The average temperatures in the Golden State have increased by three degrees since 1980, illustrated most recently with the hottest August in recorded state history, according to Newsom.
“The fundamental facts cannot be denied,” Newsom said. “The trendlines are not going in the right direction.”
Newsom said Wednesday that he “directly confronted the president” on climate change — though a video of the press briefing from earlier this week shows a more gentle exchange between leaders.
“I think there’s a way of approaching people and good people can disagree,” Newsom said. “And I maintain we are making progress and to the extent we are being heard, I believe we are.”
However, he said that he does not expect Trump to “radically change course.”
“I will continue to be stubborn as I imagine he will be as well, it’s not a belief system, it’s data,” he said. “Science. You have to acknowledge facts.”
Just one month ago, lightning strikes during an extreme heat wave sparked rash of fires across the state.
Wildfires ran rampant specifically in areas that have impacted by recent drought, leaving 136 million dead, dry trees “that act as kindling,” Newsom said.
Already, multiple blazes have destroyed more than 4.7 million acres across the West Coast, as dry grass and high winds have created tinderbox conditions.
American Farm Bureau Federation asks for additional resources
The American Farm Bureau Federation, which describes itself as “an independent, non-governmental, voluntary organization governed by and representing farm and ranch families,” and 13 state farm bureaus sent a letter to Congress asking for additional resources to prevent and recover from the catastrophic wildfires on the West Coast.
The letter, addressed to Senate leadership, also advocates for the Emergency Wildfire and Public Safety Act, which is being considered in the Senate today.
The Act would speed up forest management and post-fire reforestation, and have dangerous wood removed from forests.
“Farm Bureau members hold public lands grazing permits, own property adjacent federally managed lands and engage in both public and private land forestry,” they wrote in the letter. “In addition to direct crop and livestock losses, agricultural commodities are also being impacted via smoke-taint and ash.”
School starts for Oregon kids after wildfire delays
Students will be going to class online because of the coronavirus pandemic.
“Our educators have done an incredible job in the midst of really tough changes in the system, new technology and are really showing up for our kids,” Salem-Keizer Public Schools Superintendent Christy Perry said. “And what we keep reminding them, what our kids need most, is just to see them, so that’s our week.”
She added: “The wildfires have made everything a little rockier for us, too.”
The school district has about 41,000 students. Perry told KPTV that students’ lives were mostly affected by the smoke. Some staff members were forced to evacuate, she said.
“I told my advisory kids this a few times today, like it will all be fine,” teacher Macy Bowser said. “It’s all going to work its way out.”
California wildfires kill 25 people
The Butte County Sheriff’s Office has identified 10 of 15 victims, who range in ages from 16 to 79.
The August Complex Fire, the largest in state history, continues to burn in Northern California. It has consumed 817,952 acres and is 30% contained.
But smoke conditions and visibility are improving in Northern California, according to the Bay Area office of the National Weather Service.
“There’s still smoke in parts of northern and interior #California but parts of the #SanFrancisco area are FINALLY seeing blue skies – and it is not being taken for granted,” the office tweeted.
Mobile morgue set up in Oregon
A mobile facility for the medical examiner has been established in Linn County as officials prepare for the possibility of more fatalities.
“My house is still there, my whole block is there, because we went up there and fought it,” Richardson told KATU. “I’ve been there, I watched the town burn down, I was there for 14 hours trying to put it out with other people.”
Richardson was able to save his home but most of the town was burned, the affiliate said.
A federal disaster declaration has been approved for the state to help fund the state’s recovery and Oregon’s Congressional delegation is urging Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar to declare the wildfires in Oregon a public health emergency.
CNN’s Vanessa Yurkevich, Maeve Reston, Ray Sanchez, Dave Hennen, Joe Sutton, Andy Rose, Stella Chan and Gisela Crespo contributed to this report.