Gov. Jerry Brown was right to issue a direct challenge to the incoming Trump administration on any efforts to slow scientific research on climate change.
It was a welcome message for 3,000 scientists gathered in San Francisco to hear. Many are fearful that their research will get scuttled, leading to disastrous consequences for the planet.
"Some people say they're going to turn off the satellites that are monitoring the climate," Brown said. "Well, I remember back in 1978, I proposed a Landsat satellite for California. They called me Gov. Moonbeam because of that. I didn't get that moniker for nothing. If Trump turns off the satellites, California is going to launch our own damn satellite. We're going to collect that data."
Brown went on to remind the scientists and Californians that the state, if it were a separate nation, would represent the world's sixth-largest economy.
"We've got a lot of firepower," Brown said. "We've got the scientists, we've got the universities. We've got the national labs, and we have the political clout and sophistication for the battle. And we will persevere, have no doubt about that."
Fifty-two percent of state residents call climate change a "very serious" threat to the state's future, and 27 percent say it is "somewhat serious."
In contrast, Trump has foolishly called climate change a "hoax" pushed by China to weaken our economy. The president-elect has added climate deniers to his Cabinet, including Texas Gov. Rick "Oops" Perry, who has previously proposed eliminating the agency he will be charged with leading, the Department of Energy.
Brown reminded the scientists that, as governor, he is the president of the UC Board of Regents, and that he won't look kindly at efforts to shut down research efforts. "Keep your hands off," Brown declared. "That laboratory is going to pursue good science."