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Spitzer: Ignore climate change at your peril

October 31st, 2012
07:14 PM ET

By Samuel Burke, CNN

The devastating superstorm Sandy has cleared the east coast of the United States, but the crisis she left behind is spreading fast.

Former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer told CNN's Christiane Amanpour on Wednesday that the aftermath is much worse than officials could have expected. But Spitzer said that investments in infrastructure that should have been made years ago were never made – like protections for the subway, hospitals, and energy systems.

"At so many levels, our politics are failing us; global warming was not mentioned in the presidential debates," Spitzer said.

Andrew Cuomo, the current governor of New York, told the press on Tuesday that he hopes Sandy will be used not just as an opportunity to rebuild, but to "build it back smarter;" and added, "Anyone who says there's not a dramatic change in weather patterns I think is denying reality."

Spitzer said that unfortunately storms like Sandy become the wake-up calls to the public.

"When you speak of things in hypotheticals, people discount the reality. After this storm, perhaps public opinion will be galvanized. We can only hope so because we cannot survive a succession of these storms."

Soldiers carry patients out of Sandy-hit NYC hospital

CNN’s Ken Olshansky produced this piece for television.

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