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California governor lashes out at fossil fuel industry for climate crisis

Xinhua | Updated: 2023-09-21 09:48

UNITED NATIONS -- Gavin Newsom, governor of the US state of California, on Wednesday lashed out at the fossil fuel industry for the climate crisis.

"This climate crisis is a fossil fuel crisis. ... It's not complicated. It's the burning of oil. It's the burning of gas. It's the burning of coal. And We need to call that out," Newsom told the Climate Ambition Summit, held during the high-level week of the UN General Assembly.

"For decades and decades, the oil industry has been playing each and every one of us in this room for fools," he told top world leaders who gathered for the summit convened by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

"They've been buying our politicians. They've been denying and delaying science and fundamental information that they were privy to, that they didn't share, or they manipulated. Their deceit and denial going back decades has created the conditions that persist here today," he said.

Despite California's long history of leadership in climate action, the state is a victim of climate change, said Newsom.

California is burning up, choking up, heating up, with wildfires and floods and droughts. Places, lifestyles, and traditions are being destroyed right in front of our eyes despite California's leadership and climate ambition, he said.

"I say all of that ... with a spirit -- not of a closed fist, but of an open hand -- in an appreciation that we are all in this together, and mindful that all of us have unique circumstances, all of us have unique traditions, all of us have unique challenges," he said.

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