World Bank President David Malpass said Friday he wouldn’t resign after being criticized for comments he made about the science behind climate change, Politico reported.

“When asked, ‘Are you a climate denier?’ I should’ve said no,” Malpass told Global Insider on Friday, after answering earlier this week that he didn’t know and wasn’t a scientist at a New York Times event.

“It was a poorly chosen line. I regret that because we as an organization are using the science every day. … We have a lot of input from our global scientific community,” he emphasized.

Malpass further said that none of the 187 member states of the World Bank have asked that he resign, despite calls from climate activists who found his answer insufficient.

Instead, the World Bank president enthusiastically supported the possibility of receiving special climate science training to make him better prepared for questions and decisions.

In an interview with CNN on Thursday, Malpass made similar comments affirming that he believes in man-made climate change caused by fossil fuels.

“It’s clear that greenhouse gas emissions are coming from man-made sources, including fossil fuels, methane, agricultural uses, and industrial uses. And so, we’re working hard to change that,” Malpass proclaimed.

John Podesta, a top climate adviser to President Joe Biden, told Reuters that Malpass should watch his mouth about climate change, adding that he should “represent the people that the World Bank serves.”

“I would say, particularly, that it is time for a leader of an organization that is responsive to billions of poor people around the world not to mince words about the fact that the science is real,” Podesta said.

The White House later got in on the action, with press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre condemning the original blunder but stopping short of calling for his resignation.

“We disagree with the comments made by President Malpass. We expect the World Bank to be a global leader of climate ambition and mobilization as well of significantly more climate finance for developing countries,” Jean-Pierre said.


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