Trump dismisses climate concerns as he visits fire-ravaged West

15 Septembre, 2020, 17:50 | Auteur: Therese Cote
  • Fire-damaged forest is seen in the aftermath of the Riverside fire that ravaged Clackamas County in Estacada Oregon the United States

Trump sparred with officials during his visit to California Monday over the cause of the wildfires and the best course moving forward to prevent them. At least 35 people have died in California, Oregon and Washington, The Associated Press reported. All of the state's forests are classified as being in "extreme fire danger".

"If we have four more years of Trump's climate denial, how many suburbs will be burned in wildfires, how many suburban neighborhoods will have been flooded out, how many suburbs will have been blown away in superstorms?", Biden said during a campaign speech in his home state of DE on Monday.

The last National Climate Assessment, produced by the federal government, linked "human-caused climate change" with wildfire increases. Nearly the same number of "megafires" - defined as having scorched 100,000 acres or more - were burning last week as have occurred during the entire last century, said Jim Gersbach, spokesman for the Oregon Department of Forestry.

Firefighter Steve McAdoo, who has run from one blaze to another in OR for six days, said his neighbors in rural areas outside Portland should clear trees near their homes because a week like they just survived could happen again.

"The science is clear, and deadly signs like these are unmistakable - climate change poses an imminent, existential threat to our way of life. And Russia? Is Russia going to change its ways?" he said after landing in McLellan Park, California.

Trump has referred to climate change as a "hoax", and in 2017 pulled the United States out of the Paris accords laying out an worldwide approach to global warming.

Throughout his first term in office, Trump has rolled back a slate of Obama-era environmental regulations, including ones that placed emissions-standards on American-made cars and the Obama administration's Clean Power Plan, which would have limited carbon emissions from coal and gas-fired power plants, and withdrew the United States from the landmark Paris Climate Agreement.

San Francisco

"If you give a climate arsonist four more years in the White House, why would anyone be surprised if we have more of America ablaze ... when more of America is under water?", he said.
"How many suburban neighborhoods will have been flooded out?"

In Oregon and Washington, some 8,651 personnel are fighting wildfires, the U.S. Forest Service's Pacific Northwest regional office says. Following this, Trump said: "Well, I don't think science knows, actually". "Something has happened to the plumbing of the world. and we submit the science is self evident that climate change is real".

Trump, who has authorized federal disaster aid for both California and OR, questioned that science.

"It was an opportunity to remind the president that 57% of the forested land in the state of California is under federal jurisdiction, just 3% under the state's jurisdiction", said Newsom about his meeting with President Trump earlier in the day. Around the devastated southwestern OR towns of Phoenix and Talent, some people set up food stations in parking lots.

Reinforcing local law enforcement resources strained by the disaster, OR is deploying as many as 1,000 National Guard troops to fire-stricken communities.

Two men were arrested in OR, one on Friday and another on Monday, on arson charges stemming from a handful of relatively small fires. Police across OR have cautioned against "fake" posts blaming wildfires on left-wing anti-fascists OR right-wing Proud Boy activists.

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