Gavin Newsom, Michael Bloomberg Announce California’s Own Satellite for Climate Change

Gavin Newsom (Eric Risberg / Associated Press)
Eric Risberg / Associated Press

California Governor Gavin Newsom and billionaire Michael Bloomberg announced Wednesday that they will launch California’s own satellite dedicated to monitoring climate change and the impact of the state’s policies.

The initiative, announced at the Bloomberg Global Business Forum in New York, is the fulfillment of a 2018 pledge by former Governor Jerry Brown, who made climate change the focus of his administration. Brown promised to launch “our own damn satellite” as part of an effort to resist the Trump administration’s policies on climate change.

Bloomberg, a media pioneer who is the former mayor of New York, a gun control activist, Democratic Party donor, and the “United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Climate Action,” announced that his philanthropy would fund an initiative called Satellites for Climate Action, working with a San Francisco-based earth imaging company called Planet, and in coordination with various departments in the state government of California itself.

In a press release, the mission was described as follows:

The initiative will focus on three areas: 1) apply Planet’s existing Earth observation data to climate solutions by analyzing coal-fired plant operations, 2) explore a new generation of satellite technologies with enhanced capabilities to detect greenhouse gases such as methane and CO2, and 3) develop new geospatial analytics that can directly enable conservation efforts for forests, coral reefs, and other critical natural resources.

Newsom said: “Working with Planet and Bloomberg Philanthropies, we will continue advancing the cause of climate leadership by leveraging satellite data and analyses to enforce our bold climate policies.”

He did not mention the economic cost of those policies, with higher fuel prices and growing income inequality.

California has the highest poverty rate in the country, with nearly one in five residents classified as poor. The state is also struggling with an exploding homeless population that poses an imminent public health threat.

Last month, Newsom broke a campaign promise to appoint a homeless “czar” to oversee the state’s approach to the problem.

In related news, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will cite California on Thursday for water quality violations related to the state’s failure to deal with the homeless population and dumping into drainage systems.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He earned an A.B. in Social Studies and Environmental Science and Public Policy from Harvard College, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. He is also the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

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