Massachusetts Attorney General Was Against Forest Fires Before She Was For Them

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Maura Healey, the attorney general of Massachusetts, set the Internet ablaze Tuesday with her non-criticism of the continuing riots – “Yes, America is burning, but that’s how forests grow.”

Yet Healey has not always had a positive view of forest fires.

In October 2015, she submitted negative comments to a federal agency on a proposed natural gas pipeline in Massachusetts, calling on the Obama-era Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to “scrutinize” the pipeline plans for adverse effects, including “increased occurrences of wildfires.”

Here’s the passage:

In October 2019, Healey sued ExxonMobil for purportedly misleading investors and customers about the effect that emissions from the company’s oil products have on climate change. Healey’s complaint approvingly paraphrases a United Nations agency’s report listing threats from climate change, including “that the world faces extreme risks … of wildfires …”

The term appears here:

“Wildfires” is often used interchangeably with “forest fires.” But Healey was more precise in November 2018 when announcing her leadership of a coalition of 15 states (plus the District of Columbia) in opposing a Trump administration rollback of federal environmental regulations.

The coalition argues in its comments that the EPA has ample authority under the federal Clean Air Act to enforce these requirements and that failing to do so would contribute to global climate change, which is already causing forest fires, heat waves, sea-level rise, and other impacts that are imposing significant harm on states.

Perhaps it all depends on whose tree is being seared.