President Biden on Saturday addressed the fatal weather that ravaged parts of the South and Midwest and used the tragedy to further his own beliefs on climate change.

While speaking to reporters and virtually assessing the tornado damage from Wilmington, Delaware, Biden was asked whether he “could conclude that these storms and the intensity have to do with climate change.”

President Joe Biden speaks about his administration’s global COVID-19 vaccination efforts ahead of the G-7 summit, Thursday, June 10, 2021, in St. Ives, England. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
President Joe Biden speaks about his administration’s global COVID-19 vaccination efforts ahead of the G-7 summit, Thursday, June 10, 2021, in St. Ives, England. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky) (AP)

“All I know is that the intensity of the weather across the board has some impacts as a consequence of the warming of the planet and climate change,” Biden said. “The specific impact on these specific storms, I can’t say at this point.”

“I’m going to be asking the EPA and others to take a look at that,” Biden added. “The fact is that we all know everything is more intense when the climate is warming. Everything. And obviously it has some impact here, but I can’t give you a quantitative read on that.”

A Bowling Green, Kentucky, resident surveys the damage following a tornado that struck the area on December 11, 2021.
A Bowling Green, Kentucky, resident surveys the damage following a tornado that struck the area on December 11, 2021. (GUNNAR WORD/AFP via Getty Images)

Biden’s remarks follow a series of deadly storms and tornadoes which swept across Kentucky, Illinois, Arkansas, Tennessee, and Missouri overnight and resulted in multiple injuries and the deaths of nearly 100 Americans.

Along with the storms came an extreme amount of catastrophic damage. As of Saturday morning, more than 200,000 customers remain without power in Tennessee and Kentucky.

Workers toil through the destruction at Mayfield Consumer Products Candle Factory after it was destroyed by a tornado with workers inside, in Mayfield, Kentucky, on December 11, 2021.
Workers toil through the destruction at Mayfield Consumer Products Candle Factory after it was destroyed by a tornado with workers inside, in Mayfield, Kentucky, on December 11, 2021. (Photo by JOHN AMIS/AFP via Getty Images))

Major incidents from the storms included heavy damage to an Amazon warehouse in Edwardsville, Illinois, where at least two people are confirmed dead and dozens of workers were reportedly trapped inside the building, and the destruction of a nursing home in Arkansas, where at least two people were killed and five were hurt, according to reports.

In addition, a candle factory which had an estimated 110 employees working in it was damaged by the tornado, causing several to be trapped inside.

In November, Biden claimed climate change is “an existential threat to human existence as we know it” at the United Nations’ COP26 conference and apologized for former President Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris climate accord.

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Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear said Saturday that he is “certain” more than 70 people are dead after a tornado traveled around 227 miles through the commonwealth and is wreaking havoc on even more states as it pushes eastward.

Beshear called it the most devastating tornado event in state history, and he said that the death toll could top 100.

“Everywhere along this line of this tornado where it touched down … has been severely and significantly impacted,” Beshear said.

“It is indescribable,” he said. “The level of devastation is unlike anything I have ever seen.”

Beshear earlier said about 110 people were inside a candle factory in Mayfield when the tornado struck.

At least four different tornadoes struck the state during the night.

“It hit Mayfield as hard as just about any town,” the governor said.

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear speaks to reporters at the Statehouse in Frankfort, Ky., Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020. (Associated Press)
Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear speaks to reporters at the Statehouse in Frankfort, Ky., Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020. (Associated Press)
Other nearby towns were also hit, he said.

He advised Kentucky residents to stay as safe as they can and warned them to stay off the roads as emergency crews continued their response.

He declared a state of emergency and deployed the National Guard, he said.

Police departments and other agencies were using heavy equipment to clear fallen trees and other debris, he said.

Earlier Saturday morning came reports that hundreds of customers were without electricity in Jefferson County, Kentucky, with an estimated 20,000 or more losing service statewide, the Louisville Courier-Journal reported.

The Kentucky State Police warned that “Loss of life is expected,” in a social media post around 1 a.m. Saturday.

According to the National Weather Service, the tornado producing storm system is expected to go through southeastern Alabama, Georgia, and parts of the Florida panhandle this afternoon into tonight. Portions of the mid-Atlantic are also under a “marginal” risk of severe weather this evening. 

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