"We've got the scientists, we've got the lawyers, we are ready to fight!" A pugnacious speech filled the conference hall this morning at the American Geophysical Union Fall meeting in San Francisco where Governor of California Edmund Gerald "Jerry" Brown called upon the climate scientists of the world to stand up for truth and continue their research under the Trump presidency.In a rousing political pep talk, Governor Brown spoke to a large hall filled with thousands of climate scientists, some of the most recently downtrodden groups since the news of the election. President-elect Donald Trump and a large number of his cabinet members are open climate change deniers and have threatened to defund the earth sciences. Not only is the new administration openly anti-science, they recently sent a questionnaire to the Department of Energy seeking names of individuals who worked on researching climate change, leaving the wider population of climate scientists feeling threatened and confused (though an official on Trump's transition team told CNN today the questionnaire wasn't authorized).
Governor Brown decided to make an appearance at the so-called largest gathering of climate scientists in the world, and the first large meeting of climate scientists since the election. His speech which can only be described as a call to arms requested that the group in front of him continue to pursue their careers, continue to do science and to get prepared over these next four years to fight for their lives and their work. Here are some of his most impassioned comments from this morning's speech:"California has over $2.2 trillion in gross national product, we are the 5th or 6th largest economy in the world, we have a lot of firepower, we have the scientists we have the universities, we have the national labs, no doubt we will fight and we will persevere!""We (California) have the goal of reaching 50% renewable energy and we are at 28% right now. We'll set the stage, we'll set the example, and whatever Washington thinks, we will change the future."
"Years ago when John F. Kennedy was in LA, he said that California was the new frontier, and we still are! We're pioneering space, honest science, and a political climate that's committed to equality, and inclusivity. That's our commitment and we're going to keep it up!"
"We'll set the stage, we'll set the example, and whatever Washington thinks, we will change the future."
"You know this isn't about Breitbart and those other clowns, this is not about the proliferation of news bits—this is real life.""You're here to seek truth, and to disseminate the truth. In politics we have another game and it's not about truth, I don't know what it's about, we try to make it about truth but it just ends up being politics.""We will unite with Canada and other countries and states. We will pursue a path of collaboration and bold political advancement and eventually the truth will prevail.""You know some people say that they're going to turn off the satellites that are monitoring the climate and the Earth, well I remember in 1978 I proposed a Landsat for California and they called me governor 'moon beam' because of it, and you know I didn't get that moniker for nothing. If they turn off the satellites then California will just launch their own damn satellites! Private companies are already launching satellites in California. If they start messing with Lawrence Berkeley Labs and Lawrence Livermore Labs, then you can be sure I will tell them to keep their hands off! As long as the University of California manages those labs we will have honest independent science.""I have proposed to knock down oil consumption in California. This is a long term slog into the future, you are there the foot soldiers of change and scientific collaboration.""To Rick Perry: I've got some news for you, California is growing a hell of a lot more than Texas, and we have more sun than you have oil!"
"We're not yet at the point of absurdity, but when we get there we'll be ready to ride the back of sustainability and proof. Scientists of this world unite! You have nothing to lose but your grants and your tenure. It's risk-taking, but most of all truth telling, truth seeking, truth telling is profoundly more impactful than rhetoric,—rhetoric comes and goes, truth stays."
"To Rick Perry: I've got some news for you, California is growing a hell of a lot more than Texas, and we have more sun than you have oil!"
"I promise you everything I do in California will be to bring common sense to the people of America. I promise for California and any other states that want to join, and hopefully Washington will combat climate change into the future.""We're a state where foreign leaders come to California, they come to Silicon Valley, they come to drink the water like a pilgrimage. California is a pivot point so that we can leverage what we are with others and wherever you are you can contribute to that. Don't lose faith or get isolated. If anyone in Washington starts picking on researchers you can be sure you have a friend in California.""This is about working boldly and working together and understanding the power of who you are and what you can do."Get six of our favorite Motherboard stories every day by signing up for our newsletter.