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California Governor vows to fight U.S. President-elect on climate change

(Xinhua)    10:52, December 16, 2016

California Governor Jerry Brown, nicknamed "Gov. Moonbeam", has said his state was "ready to fight" President-elect Donald Trump on climate change if the new administration tries to ditch policies that combat global warming.

"If Trump turns off the satellites, California will launch its own damn satellite. We are going to collect that data," Brown said to loud applause during a heated speech at the American Geophysical Union Conference in San Francisco on Wednesday, recalling the "Governor Moonbeam" nickname he earned in the 1970s thanks to his push for a state satellite.

Brown seized on comments from a top Trump adviser, who said the incoming administration plans to eliminate NASA's earth science programs, the Los Angeles Times reported on Thursday.

The Governor promised to continue climate research even if the Trump administration tries to interfere.

"We've got the scientists, we've got the lawyers and we're ready to fight," Brown said.

Global warming has caused sea levels to increase by 3.2 millimeters per year, threatening infrastructure and ecosystems, according to a new report published in Science, which called for more research into adaptations to sea-level increases, and for reductions of greenhouse gas emissions.

However, Trump, who called climate change a "hoax," has been a long-term skeptic of climate change. During his presidential campaign, Trump vowed to withdraw the United Statesfrom the Paris Agreement, which was inked in December, 2015 and came into force last week. The agreement, signed by more than 180 countries, aimed to hold increases in the global average temperature below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, by pledging to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases.

The President-elect said Sunday that "nobody really knows" whether climate change is real and that he is "studying" whether the United States should withdraw from the global warming agreement struck in Paris a year ago.

Trump recently has selected a number of cabinet officials who question the science of global warming, including former Texas Governor Rick Perry as Energy Secretary.

And referring to Perry, Brown reminded everyone of California's advantages over Texas when it comes to renewable energy.

"We've got more sun than you've got oil," he said.

In the United States, scientific research on climate change is mainly funded by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the National Science Foundation (NSF), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the Department of Energy (DOE), Huang Xianglei, an associate professor from the Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic, and Space Sciences at the University of Michigan, told Xinhua.

The budgets of NASA, NSF, NOAA and DOE are set by Congress, while individual program officers within these agencies decide how funds are divided based on peer reviews from within the scientific community. This means that while the new president may take a personal stance against climate change, "it is too early to tell how the new administration would and could steer the direction of climate-change research," Huang said.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Zhang Tianrui, Bianji)

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