ABOARD THE PAPAL PLANE — Pope Francis has sharply criticized climate change skeptics, saying history will judge those who failed to take the necessary decisions to curb heat-trapping emissions blamed for the warming of the Earth.

Pope Francis talks to journalists Monday during a flight to Rome at the end of his five-day visit to Colombia. His visit got off to a rocky start when he banged his head on his popemobile when it stopped short amid swarms of well-wishers in Cartagena. The pontiff, who only had a hip-high bar to hold onto, lost his balance and suffered a bruised left eye and a cut on his eyebrow. Associated Press/Andrew Medichini

Francis was asked about climate change and the spate of hurricanes that have pummeled the U.S., Mexico and the Caribbean recently as his charter plane left Colombia and flew over some of the devastated areas.

He said: “Those who deny this must go to the scientists and ask them. They speak very clearly” – referring to experts who blame global warming on man-made activities.

Francis said scientists have clearly charted what needed to be done to reverse course on global warming and said individuals and politicians had a “moral responsibility” to do their part.