Vatican official suggests climate skeptics like President Trump are akin to flat-Earth believers

An official at the Vatican has reportedly suggested that climate change skeptics like President Donald Trump are like those who believe the Earth is flat.

Bishop Marcelo Sanchez Sorondo, who leads the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, recently said that a withdrawal from the Paris accord "would not only be a disaster but completely unscientific," according to Reuters.

He added, "Saying that we need to rely on coal and oil is like saying that the earth is not round. It is an absurdity dictated by the need to make money."

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Pope Francis talks with U.S. President Donald Trump and his wife Melania during a private audience at the Vatican, May 24, 2017. REUTERS/Alessandra Tarantino/pool TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
VATICAN CITY, VATICAN - MAY 24: US First Lady Melania Trump arrives at the Apostolic Palace for an audience with Pope Francis on May 24, 2017 in Vatican City, Vatican. The president will return to Italy on Friday, attending the Group of 7 summit in Sicily. Trump will also visit American troops stationed in at a US air base in Sicily. (Photo by Franco Origlia/Getty Images)
U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania meet Pope Francis during a private audience at the Vatican, May 24, 2017. REUTERS/Evan Vucci/Pool
U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania are greeted by Pope Francis during a private audience at the Vatican, May 24, 2017. REUTERS/Evan Vucci/Pool
U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania meet Pope Francis during a meeting at the Vatican, May 24, 2017. REUTERS/Evan Vucci/Pool
US First Lady Melania Trump shakes hands with officials as she arrives at the Vatican on May 24, 2017. US President Donald Trump met Pope Francis at the Vatican today in a keenly-anticipated first face-to-face encounter between two world leaders who have clashed repeatedly on several issues. / AFP PHOTO / Vincenzo PINTO (Photo credit should read VINCENZO PINTO/AFP/Getty Images)
Pope Francis (R) walks along with US President Donald Trump and US First Lady Melania Trump during a private audience at the Vatican on May 24, 2017. US President Donald Trump met Pope Francis at the Vatican today in a keenly-anticipated first face-to-face encounter between two world leaders who have clashed repeatedly on several issues. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Evan Vucci (Photo credit should read EVAN VUCCI/AFP/Getty Images)
Pope Francis (C) walks past US First Lady Melania Trump (R) and the daughter of US President Donald Trump Ivanka Trump (L) at the end of a private audience at the Vatican on May 24, 2017. US President Donald Trump met Pope Francis at the Vatican today in a keenly-anticipated first face-to-face encounter between two world leaders who have clashed repeatedly on several issues. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Alessandra Tarantino (Photo credit should read ALESSANDRA TARANTINO/AFP/Getty Images)
U.S. first lady Melania Trump visits the Bambino Gesu hospital in Rome, Italy, May 24, 2017. REUTERS/Remo Casilli
VATICAN CITY, VATICAN - MAY 24 : U.S. President Donald Trump (C) and his wife Melania (L) are welcomed by Monsignor Georg Gaenswein as they arrive at the Vatican for their audience with Pope Francis, on May 24, 2017. (Photo by Riccardo De Luca/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
VATICAN CITY, VATICAN - MAY 24: US First Lady Melania Trump arrives at the Apostolic Palace for an audience with Pope Francis on May 24, 2017 in Vatican City, Vatican. The president will return to Italy on Friday, attending the Group of 7 summit in Sicily. Trump will also visit American troops stationed in at a US air base in Sicily. (Photo by Franco Origlia/Getty Images)
U.S. first lady Melania Trump visits the Bambino Gesu hospital in Rome, Italy, May 24, 2017. REUTERS/Remo Casilli
A girl takes a selfie with U.S. first lady Melania Trump at the Bambino Gesu hospital in Rome, Italy, May 24, 2017. REUTERS/Remo Casilli
U.S. first lady Melania Trump visits the Bambino Gesu hospital in Rome, Italy, May 24, 2017. REUTERS/Remo Casilli
U.S. first lady Melania Trump visits the Bambino Gesu hospital in Rome, Italy, May 24, 2017. REUTERS/Remo Casilli
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The bishop's statements about the reality of climate change came just before Trump's historic decision, announcing the U.S. will be leaving the Paris climate agreement.

Sorondo's views are largely in line with those Pope Francis himself has made in the past.

The Independent notes that in an encyclical, or papal letter, the pope issued in 2015, he wrote that climate change was a "global problem which has grave implications: environmental, social, economic, political, and for the distribution of goods."

SEE ALSO: 20 images of Earth over the past 70 years show why countries signed the Paris Agreement

In it, he also said, "Reducing greenhouse gases requires honesty, courage and responsibility."

Pope Francis gave a copy of this encyclical to President Trump during their meeting at the Vatican last week.

While Trump has, in the past, called climate change a "hoax," other members of his administration like daughter Ivanka Trump and chief economist Gary Cohn are believed to be advocates.

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