Trump hails Finnish forest management

Frederick Owens
November 19, 2018

He said: "You've got to take care of the floors".

But days after threatening to cut federal funding to California over its alleged "gross mismanagement" of forests, Trump tweeted Friday that he was looking forward to meetingGovernor Jerry Brown and his newly elected successor Gavin Newsom. He said that they did discuss the California wildfires when they met, and that he told Trump "we take care of our forests". "I was with the President of Finland. he called it a forest nation and they spent a lot of time on raking and cleaning and doing things and they don't have any problem".

But asked if he had made that case to Trump, he said: "I certainly raised it but I didn't feel that that was where we needed to go", then added that science would be the guide for analysing the fires "and the president in no way negated that".

Finnish President Sauli Niinisto said in an interview published Sunday in the Ilta-Sanomat newspaper that he spoke briefly with Trump about forest management on November 11, when they both were in Paris for Armistice Day events. Trump told Fox News from the Oval Office on Friday - before he left for California.

Since that comment, Finland's President said he doesn't even recall having that conversation, while others have pointed out the differences between the California and Finland, the latter of which has a colder climate, and trees which are less prone to catching fire.

Meanwhile Mr Yrjo Niskanen, head of emergency preparedness at Finland's national forest centre, said the USA president may have been referring to the practice of removing branches and loose material left in the forest after logging. "It's my civic duty", News Now Finland editor David Mac Dougall chimed in.

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He didn't mention that part of Finland is actually in the Arctic Circle.

The president's comments have inspired Finns to post pictures of themselves raking on social media.

Maybe it wasn't Niinisto who gave Trump the raking idea.

Yet another Twitter user countered Trump's claims, sharing a photo of a woman not raking the forest floor in Finland, but vacuuming it.

Officials also raised the number of people on the missing persons list, hours after Trump surveyed what remained of a decimated community.

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