Standing In Scorched CA, Trump Lauds Finland's 'Raking And Cleaning' Policy

Standing In Scorched CA, Trump Lauds Finland's 'Raking And Cleaning' Policy

Standing In Scorched CA, Trump Lauds Finland's 'Raking And Cleaning' Policy

"We've never seen anything like this in California", Trump said. "That's essentially what's enabled these recent fires to be so destructive, at times of the year when you wouldn't really expect them". "There is no reason for these massive, deadly and costly forest fires in California except that forest management is so poor", Trump tweeted, threatening to cut off federal funding for forest management.

US President Donald Trump travelled to California this weekend to inspect for himself the devastating effects of the fires that have ripped through several parts of the state.

In Northern California, Trump continued to show skepticism about the impact of climate change on wildfires.

This patch of California, a former Gold Rush region in the Sierra Nevada foothills, is to some extent Trump country.

When asked whether climate change was a factor, Trump said, "I think you have a lot of factors", before turning back to the subject of forest management, "Right now, that seems to be a very big problem".

Another fire, the Hill Fire which broke out in Ventura County on the afternoon of November 8 and burned more than 4,500 acres and destroyed four structures, is 100 percent contained.

Trump pledged that improved forest management practices will diminish future risks.

Ron Waterbury, who lost his home in Paradise, watched news about Trump's visit on a TV set outside a Red Cross shelter in Chico.

Trump has always been skeptical of man's role in global warming despite mounting scientific evidence that the burning of fossil fuels is heating the planet and leading to more extreme weather.

The president, who left Washington early Saturday and didn't expect to return to the White House until well past midnight, planned to get a firsthand look at the devastation from the wildfire that has destroyed the town of Paradise and heavily damaged the outlying community of Magalia.

Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea pleaded with fire evacuees to check the roster of people reported as unreachable by family and friends and to call in if they are safe.

More than 1,000 people are now on a list of those unaccounted for following a deadly Northern California wildfire - but authorities have stressed it does not mean all of them are missing.

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Seventy-one people have died in the fire and more than 1,000 are reported missing, although authorities stress that many will likely turn up unharmed.

"There have been some back and forth between California leaders and the president".

A full cover of haze and the smell of smoke greeted the president upon his arrival at Beale Air Force Base near Sacramento, where he was met by Governor Jerry Brown and Governor-elect Gavin Newsom, both Democrats.

Two federal agencies, the Forest Service and the Interior Department, manage 57 per cent of California's forests, private, commercial (timber) and Native American interests control an additional 40 per cent and just three per cent are managed by state or local agencies.

According to a pool report Saturday, Trump said "no", when asked if the extensive fire damage in the state had changed his mind about global warming.

"I would tell him that this fire has nothing to do with forest mismanagement".

The presidential motorcade has driven past some scorched fields as well as destroyed homes and burned out cars.

In the community of Chico, just west of Paradise, volunteers had erected a tented encampment for others forced from their homes.

Pope Francis has prayed for victims of California's wildfires and freezing weather on the U.S. East Coast. Unlike, Paradise, which was home to many retirees on modest incomes, Malibu is the classic home of the California dream - for those who can afford it.

At least 300 people who fled the Camp Fire were sheltering on Friday in the flood-prone parking lot of a Walmart in Chico, about 24 km west of where the blaze consumed the mountain town of Paradise on November 8.

California's tragedy touched the heart of Pope Francis in Rome, where on Sunday he sent out "a special those affected by the fires that are ravaging California".

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