The U.S. Forest Service has reported this month that over 102 million trees have died in California as a result of the record-breaking drought in that state. That drought is part of the larger, human-caused shift in climate that scientists have predicted for years: The drying out of the Southwestern United States, making the region less hospitable to life of all kinds, including human life.
The loss of so many trees is causing a dramatic degradation in California’s ecology, but is also having a global impact. Each one of those dead trees was absorbing carbon dioxide from the air when it was alive. Now, that much more greenhouse gas is staying in the atmosphere, making global warming even worse.
As the incoming President, how will Donald Trump respond to this crisis?
He won’t. Trump has made it clear that he doesn’t believe in climate change, he says. He thinks it’s a hoax made up by the Chinese government.
To be fair, it isn’t quite true to say that Donald Trump has no plan to deal with climate change. He does have a plan. He wants to defund the scientific agencies that measure and report data about climate change.
The Trump Climate Plan is to put America’s head in the sand, and hope that if we stop paying attention to it, climate change will just go away all on its own.
In the Age of Trump, ignorance is power – at least in the political sphere. Outside of politics, even Donald Trump’s ego cannot undo the fundamental physical facts measured by climatologists.