Hawaii Gov. Josh Green says “very real” global warming has created the conditions for deadly wildfires

Hawaii Gov. Josh Green claimed Sunday that global warming played a major role in the Maui wildfire that destroyed a historic town and has claimed at least 93 lives so far.

Speaking about the devastation in the century-old city of Lahaina during an appearance on MSNBC's The Sunday Show with Jonathan Capehart, Green described the wildfire as a “fire hurricane” with 80-mph gusting winds and “1,000-degree heat, the fire cyclones generate”. walk through buildings.”

“Everything burned down in Lahaina,” the Democrat said, calling it a “war zone” that was “completely destroyed.”

Green attributed the strong winds from Hurricane Dora, which swept far south of the island last week, and Maui's very dry drought conditions to the fast-spreading fire.

The Hawaii wildfire becomes the deadliest blaze in the US in more than a century as the death toll reaches 93 and is expected to rise further

“When the fire jumped from one spot to another — there were three or four fires at a time — it spread very quickly because of the 80-mph gusty winds,” he said. “And then the fire essentially moved through the community at a mile per minute, which is 60 miles per hour.”

Fire damage on Maui

Green said the city of Lahaina was “completely devastated” and looked like a “war zone.” (Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources via AP)

“This is what a fire hurricane will look like in the age of global warming,” Green warned.

Green said global warming is “very real to us and everywhere” and urged people to do whatever it takes to stop and reverse its effects.

The Lahaina fire has become the deadliest wildfire in the United States in more than a century. Officers face the challenge of identifying the remains recovered so far, as the bodies have been reduced to ashes and are falling apart in their hands.


Green was also responding to criticism of the island's siren system for failing to warn residents of the approaching fire in time for them to flee.

Governor of Hawaii Josh Green

Green said officers are investigating whether enough has been done to activate the siren system in time to warn residents of the fire. (Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images)

Thousands of residents fled the city. Videos show some jumping into the Pacific Ocean to escape the inferno.

The governor said officials would check whether enough had been done to activate the sirens in time, noting that there was a mass destruction of telecommunications equipment during the wildfire.


“Otherwise, as always, we ourselves would have been communicating on our cell phones within seconds,” Green said, adding, “We're going to make sure we get all the responses people deserve.”

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