Governor Gavin Newsom signed a $15 billion package that funds programs to fight drought and climate change in the state following a devastating forest fire season.

The funding forms part of the state’s $262.6 billion budget, passed earlier this year.

Man-made climate change has exacerbated drought in the southwest United States, the heaviest on record, and rainfall is at the lowest since 1895, a US government report showed Tuesday.

The largest package of funding has been $5.2 billion for water and drought projects, adding to another painful drought threatening drinking water supplies nationwide.

This month, President Joe Biden renewed his called for substantial investment in fighting climate change when he visited California and toured areas that have been hit by one of the nation’s worst fire seasons.

Climate groups and the governor say the $15 billion is a historic “down payment” to the state for its fight against climate change, but some say the governor’s measures could go further.

Governor of California

The governor of California is the head of government of the U.S. state of California. The governor is the commander-in-chief of the California National Guard and the California State Guard. (wikipedia)

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Gavin Newsom

Gavin Christopher Newsom is an American politician and businessman serving as the 40th governor of California since January 2019. A member of the Democratic Party, (wikipedia)

2018 California gubernatorial election

The 2018 California gubernatorial election was held on November 6, 2018, to elect the Governor of California. (wikipedia)

Presidency of Joe Biden

Joe Biden’s tenure as the 46th president of the United States began with his inauguration on January 20, 2021. Biden, a Democrat originally from Delaware, (wikipedia)