President Joe Biden said this Hurricane Jan – and other extreme events such as forest fires and droughts – put an end to the debate “about whether or not climate change and we have to do something about it.”

The president stated this after a trip to Floridaon the gulf coast on wednesday with first lady dr Jill Biden where they visited some of the most affected communities.

Biden was warmly welcomed by the Republican governor Ron DeSantis and his wife, Casey, in Fort Myers Beach, a city on the Gulf Coast that was largely destroyed by the Category 5 storm.

Mr. Biden and Mr. DeSantis spoke at length in a rare display of bipartisanship for two men who have publicly attacked each other on hot-button policy issues including immigration and vaccine mandates.

After meeting with local residents who lost homes and businesses, the Florida governor spoke first, thanking President Biden for his support.

The president followed and began by saying that he had “been in a lot of disaster areas in the last six months.”

He cited massive wildfires in the West and Southwest that burned more than “the entire state of New Jersey” to the ground.

“Reservoirs in the west are almost at zero,” he said. “We’re in a situation where the Colorado River is more like a creek.”

Looking at it, Governor DeSantis added, “There’s a lot going on, and I think the one thing that’s finally ended is the debate about whether there’s climate change and we have to do something about it.”

Mr. DeSantis has repeatedly voted against legislation to cut greenhouse gas emissions, even as he has announced hundreds of millions of dollars to help his state deal with the effects of increasingly powerful hurricanes and rising sea levels.

In January 2013, Congressman-elect DeSantis opposed a $9.7 billion flood insurance package to help victims of Hurricane Sandy in New York and New Jersey. He said he sympathizes with the victims, but it is not “fiscal responsibility” to send them federal funds.

The climate crisis that doesn’t necessarily mean there will be more hurricanes in the future, but the planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions, mostly caused by burning fossil fuels, are supercharged storms, making them more common to intensify quickly and hold more water.

Hurricane Ian, one of the strongest in Florida’s history, slammed into the state last Wednesday with 155 mph winds, heavy rain and a powerful storm surge that swept through populated areas. The hurricane then swept across the state, dumping several feet of rain on cities hundreds of miles inland.

At least 100 people died in Florida. More than half of the deaths occurred in Lee County, where several areas were devastated by the strikes. More than 3,000 people were rescued after search teams knocked down 70,000 doors.

According to the first estimates, the damage from Hurricane Ian is between 28 and 47 billion dollars. Thousands are now homeless – a large number without insurance. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is preparing for potentially thousands of people to become long-term displaced.

​​​​​​​​While more than 2.5 million customers were without power after Florida’s peak outages, more than 297,00 people remain without power in the state.

On Wednesday, Mr. Biden spoke directly to the people of Florida. He said he had come to tell them in person that “we are not leaving until this is done.”

“It’s going to take years for the state of Florida to get things right … to fully recover and recover,” he added.

During the trip, the president and first lady surveyed storm-damaged areas from a helicopter en route to the Fisherman’s Wharf area of ​​Fort Myers Beach.

They went on to speak with small business owners and local residents, as well as first responders and local officials who worked around the clock to deal with the hurricane’s aftermath.

President Biden issued a major disaster declaration for Florida in the wake of Hurricane Jan, which provided individual assistance and debris removal for 17 counties and the Seminole Native Tribe of Florida, as well as covering the costs of search and rescue, shelter, food, and more. emergency measures to save lives within 30 days.

Ahead of his visit, he gave Florida additional federal funding for another 30 days of relief.

Meteorologists warn that more hurricanes are undergoing a process called “rapid intensification,” where they gain strength for short periods of time and can catch regions by surprise when they make landfall.

National Hurricane Center determines “rapid intensification” as an increase in wind strength of at least 30 knots, or about 34 miles per hour, in 24 hours.

An analysis released last week by researchers at Stony Brook University and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory also found that climate change is human-caused increased the rate of Jan’s extreme rains by more than 10 percent This is reported by the non-profit organization Climate Signals.