Once again on Sunday, the United States President Donald Trump threatened to withhold federal help from California after its Democratic governor criticized his environmental policies.
Fires have damaged nearly 100,000 acres (40,000 hectares) in the sprawling western state over the past two weeks. On Sunday, firefighters were fighting the Maria Fire at the same place, about 60 miles (100 kilometers) northwest of Los Angeles.
Last year, President Trump blamed Governor Gavin Newsom after fires killed 86 people in northern California saying he had done “a terrible job of forest management.”
He said on Twitter, “Every year, as the fire’s (sic) rage & California burns, it is the same thing and then he comes to the Federal Government for $$$ help. No more. Get your act together Governor.”
Responding to the tweet, Newsom brushed off Trump’s criticism in 12 words, “You don’t believe in climate change. You are excused from this conversation.”
During a recent interview with the New York Times, Newsom had offered a fuller critique highlighting Trump’s roll-back of environmental protections. “We’re waging war against the most destructive fires in our state’s history,” he said.
“Trump is conducting a full-on assault against the antidote,” he added.
The president has already questioned openly on several occasions the scientific consensus that human activity causes changes in the climate and particularly the drought that has contributed to the California fires.
On September 18, his administration decided to scrap California’s authority to set its own standards for automobile pollution. The Republican government was criticized by Newsom for the uncertainty in dealing with disasters.
Newsom told sources, “Last night they approved seven additional emergency grants in record time.”
“But what’s so insidious, and what’s so remarkable is that he’s doing everything right to respond to these disasters and everything wrong to address what’s happening to cause them,” he added.
Firefighters were continuously fighting against the Maria Fire that they claimed is now 50 percent contained and the Kincade Fire north of San Francisco, now 76 percent contained.
Other fires have been controlled which had threatened iconic institutions and multi-million-dollar homes in the Los Angeles area. Moreover, the residents who had evacuated are beginning to return home.