JUST IN: Trump Threatens To Block Funds For California Wildfires

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Donald Trump has a problem with California, because it went for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election. Unfortunately, he holds a grudge. The first time he addressed the terrible California wildfires, he got the situation really wrong.

POTUS said the cause of the wildfires was the way the state managed its environment policies. The president’s tweets reflected his disdain for the Golden state. Instead of using its water to fight the fires, Trump said it was, according to The New York Times:

‘Foolishly being diverted into the Pacific Ocean…California wildfires are being magnified & made so much worse by the bad environmental laws which aren’t allowing massive amount of readily available water to be properly utilized.’

The man sitting in the Oval Office noted, according to The Washington Post:

‘I said “you must have a tremendous drought going on.” They said “no, we have so much water we don’t know what to do with it. But they don’t let the water come down to us. It naturally flows to us. They won’t let it. They send it out into the Pacific Ocean. Millions and millions and millions of gallons. We have the greatest farmland anywhere in the world, but they won’t give us water.”‘

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The commander-in-chief also commented on the debate in forest management around moving trees and brush to control the forest fires. His comments followed the White House’s declaration that the wildfires had truly been a “major disaster.” It was only then that he released federal funding for the recovery efforts.

Assistant deputy director of Cal Fire, which is California’s agency in charge of firefighting, Daniel Berlant responded, the New York Times reported:

‘We have plenty of water to fight these wildfires, but let’s be clear: It’s our changing climate that is leading to more severe and destructive fires.’

He questioned whether the president was talking about a separate issue. Each year, California farmers and environmentalists have a disagreement over the distribution of water. Naturally, the farmers need water for irrigating their crops. On the other hand, environmentalists claim that the fish in the rivers would die if they diverted water for irrigation.

When Trump was in Fresno for a 2016 campaign rally, Trump said California’s water problem was “so insane.”

‘You have a water problem that is so insane, it is so ridiculous, where they’re taking the water and shoving it out to sea. They have farms up here, and they don’t get water.’

When Governor Jerry Brown was asked what Trump was talking about when he referred to diverting water into the ocean, his spokesperson, Evan Westrup, responded:

‘Your guess is as good as mine.’

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The president did not refer to climate change as a factor in the wildfires. He believes that climate change is just a hoax and refuses to take in information on the issue or change his mind. Even his cabinet doubts whether humans have a part in the subject.

Senior staff scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Michael Wehner, said quantifying the exact impact climate change has on forest fires is not possible. However, he did note that longer, drier summers do expand the wildfire season:

‘To dismiss the role of climate change on these fires is simply incorrect.’

Management professor at the University of California, Merced, LeRoy Westerling studies wildfires. He said the president was wrong to blame California:

‘(California is) spending millions and millions of dollars on this while the federal government is sitting on its hands. And all that money is being raised because we’re putting a price on carbon.’

Featured image is a screenshot via YouTube.