National Geographic said: "Climate change is making California's fires bigger."
The Los Angeles Times declared: "Bigger wildfires. Worsening droughts. More disease. How Climate change is battering California."
The Washington Post dedicated an entire story to debunking claims made by President Donald Trump in which he blamed "forest mismanagement" for the deadly fires. That's false, the Post declared, identifying climate change as the fire antagonist.
But a California judge vehemently disagrees — and on Friday, he issued a ruling explaining why climate change is not to blame.
What did the judge say?
U.S. District Court Judge William Alsup ruled last Thursday that California utility company Pacific Gas and Electric was "the single most recurring cause" that contributed to devastating wildfires that burned millions of acres and led to the deaths of dozens of California residents.
According to NBC News, Alsup wrote in a scathing opinion:
The Court tentatively finds that the single most recurring cause of the large 2017 and 2018 wildfires attributable to PG&E's equipment has been the susceptibility of PG&E's distribution lines to trees or limbs falling onto them during high-wind events.
The power conductors are almost always uninsulated. When the conductors are pushed together by falling trees or limbs, electrical sparks drop into the vegetation below. During the wildfire season when the vegetation is dry, these electrical sparks pose an extreme danger of igniting a wildfire.
Scott McLean, deputy chief of communication for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, told NBC the state determined PG&E was liable for 12 of 17 wildfires during the 2017 season, but has yet to rule on last year's fires, including the Camp Fire, which killed 88.
PG&E has reportedly acknowledged its equipment may have played a role in the historic fire. Meanwhile, the utility company plans to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy as liabilities related to the Camp Fire could exceed $30 billion, the Sacramento Bee reported.
How did PG&E respond?
"We are committed to complying with all rules and regulations that apply to our work, while working together with our state and community partners and across all sectors and disciplines to develop comprehensive, long-term safety solutions for the future," a company spokesman said, according to the Bee.