BERRY CREEK (CBS13) — President Donald Trump dodged questions directly answering questions on climate change, Monday. One Berry Creek man who lived through the wildfire wants the president to know he thinks climate change is very real.
“We made the decision. We had to get out,” said Robert Lipkin.
Just after he and his wife left to escape the Bear Fire, seeking shelter in Oroville, a motion sensor camera set up overlooking his property caught the unbelievable fire in action.
“The motion sensor went off when the first flash of fire went off and for the next seven and a half minutes it was the most amazing footage I had ever seen,” said Lipkin.
Lipkin’s camera caught what starts as a flash and minutes later the entire forest lights up. You can see how quickly the fire moves, inching closer to Lipkin’s longtime home. Finally, you see the reflection of the flames, the porch ignites, and there is a final flare-up.
“That’s when the house burned down,” said Lipkin.
A devastating realization watching his home from miles away and hopeless.
“Everything we collected sailing around the world is gone,” he said.
President Trump has often criticized California’s response to wildfires. But during his visit Monday, the president refused to acknowledge the effects of a climate crisis. Instead, he continued to highlight the need for better forest management to clear dead trees.
“It’s like explosive. You drop a cigarette on it, and a half-hour later you have a forest fire,” said President Trump.
It’s something that is frustrating to Robert, who says he has seen the effects of a warming world first hand and says it’s important to address now.
“Climate change is real. There is no doubt in my mind,” he said.
In response, Gov. Gavin Newsom said he agrees to disagree with President Trump. He appreciates the federal government brokering a deal to spend more here in the state on forest management, he says that’s only part of the problem.