Oregon governor calls wildfires a ‘bellwether for climate change’: ‘This is a wake up call for all of us’
Oregon Gov. Kate Brown (D) said Sunday the wildfires raging across the west coast are a “wake up call” for officials to take action on climate change.
Brown said the cause of the fires is being investigated, but said the region saw the “perfect fire storm.”
“We saw incredible winds, we saw very cold hot temperatures, and of course we have a landscape that has seen 30 years of drought,” Brown said on CBS’s “Face the Nation.” “This is truly the bellwether for climate change on the west coast and this is a wakeup call for all of us that we have to do everything in our power to tackle climate change.”
Brown said that about 500,000 acres of land has burned in Oregon over the last ten years. By contrast, she said over 1 million acres has burned in the state this week alone.
Asked about claims that the fires are due to mismanagement of forests rather than climate change, Brown said “it’s both.”
“It’s both, it’s decades of mismanagement of our forests in this country and it is the failure to tackle climate change. We need to do both,” the governor said.
President Trump is scheduled to visit California on Monday. Trump last month claimed the fires are due to years of poor forest management, dismissing concerns over climate change.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti (D) said Sunday on CNN that “anybody who lives in California is insulted” by Trump’s claims, and criticized the president’s response to the fires.
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