Trump again rejected science during California wildfire briefing

Mr. Trump, who had already come under severe criticism for barely addressing it, interrupted a Western campaign swing to make a two-hour trip to an airport at McClallan Park outside Sacramento, where the Air Force struck a fog. Descended through the mist. Not far away, one of the largest fires, now largely contained, recently burned over 363,000 acres.

As the president descended from the plane at Sacramento McClellan Airport, where the smell of smoke filled the air, he did not wait for his scheduled briefing to tell reporters that the cause of the collision was poor climate management, not climate change.

“When trees fall off after a short period of time, they become very dry – really like matchsticks,” Mr. Trump said. “And they can explode. Also leaves. When you dry the leaves on the ground, it is simply fuel for the fire. “

However, in his subsequent briefing, Gov. Gavin Newsom and his top environmental adviser pushed the president to accept the role of climate change. A Democrat, Mr. Newsom, made a point of doing so politely, affirming his working relationship with the president, thanking him for federal help and agreed that forest management needed to be improved.

But Mr. Newsom noted that only 3 percent of the land in California is under state control, while 57 percent is federal forest land, meaning governed by federal law under the president’s management.

“As you suggest, the work relationship values ​​me,” Mr. Newsom said. But he said climate change was clearly a factor. “Something is happening for the world’s pipeline, and we come from a point of view, humbly, where we present the science and see that the evidence is self-evident that climate change is real, and it is increasing it. “