Extreme Wildfires Expected to Increase 30% by 2050

Indonesia’s peatlands, California’s forests, and, now, vast swathes of Argentine wetland have all been ravaged by extreme wildfires, heralding a fiery future and the dire need to prevent it.

With climate change triggering droughts and farmers clearing forests, the number of extreme wildfires is expected to increase 30% within the next 28 years. And they are now scorching environments that were not prone to burning in the past, such as the Arctic’s tundra and the Amazon rainforest.

“We’ve seen a great increase in recent fires in northern Syria, northern Siberia, the eastern side of Australia, and India,” said Australian government bushfire scientist Andrew Sullivan, an editor on the report, released Wednesday, by the UN Environment Programme and GRID-Arendal environmental communications group.

California Wildfire at 20% Containment, Evacuation Orders Lifted

A wildfire near Bishop, California, is only 20% contained, however evacuation orders have been lifted.

The Airport Fire, which started on Wednesday, has burned 4,136 acres. At one point it had threatened 150 structures, according to CalFire.

“Forward rate of progress has been stopped north of Hwy 168 and firefighters continue to construct containment lines and mop-up on the north end of the fire,” a CalFire incident report states.

Researcher Seeks Answers to Question: How Does A Town Rebuild After a Wildfire?

Three months after the most destructive fire in California’s history, the residents of Paradise were sifting through the rubble of their houses, moving out of shelters and into less temporary but not permanent housing, considering the future of their home.

Catrin Edgeley took her notebook and recorder to the destroyed town. She wanted to understand the ecology of the human response to the Camp Fire. For how often this happens, there are still so many unknowns.

Wildfire on California Coast Now 45% Contained

Shifting winds and increased humidity helped firefighters make progress against a blaze burning in rugged mountains near California’s Big Sur coast, authorities said.

The Colorado Fire was 45% contained on Tuesday, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, or Cal Fire.

It erupted Friday evening as strong, dry, offshore winds raked California with damaging gusts. Since then, winds have calmed and changed direction.

“The onshore winds have increased humidity along the coast,” a Cal Fire statement said. “Firefighters will continue strengthening control lines and mopping-up hot spots.”

Hundreds Evacuated as Crews Battle California Wildfire

Hundreds of residents remained evacuated Sunday as crews battled a wildfire in rugged mountains along the California coast that forced the closure of the main roadway near Big Sur.

One structure, a yurt, was destroyed by the blaze that broke out Friday in a steep canyon and quickly spread toward the sea, fanned by gusts up to 50 mph.

The flames made a big run after winds whipped up again late Saturday, but since then conditions have calmed and crews made some progress against the blaze, said Cecile Juliette, a spokeswoman for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

California Budget Aims to Tackle Climate Change, Wildfires, Crime

California Gov. Gavin Newsom proposed a $286.4 billion budget that sets off months of budget talks with his fellow Democrats, who control the state Legislature, before the new fiscal year begins July 1.

Newsom focused much of his budget proposal on some of the state’s biggest issues _ climate change, homelessness, education, abortion, high-speed rail, the pandemic, crime.

PG&E Blamed for Dixie Fire in Northern California

Pacific Gas & Electric power lines sparked last summer’s Dixie Fire in Northern California that swept through five counties and burned more than 1,300 homes and other buildings, state fire officials said Tuesday.

The blaze was caused by a tree hitting electrical distribution lines west of a dam in the Sierra Nevada, where the blaze began on July 13, according to investigators with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

Father, Son Charged With Starting Massive California Wildfire Plead Not Guilty

A father and son charged with starting a massive California wildfire that destroyed many homes and forced tens of thousands of people to flee Lake Tahoe communities earlier this year pleaded not guilty in court.

The El Dorado County prosecutor’s office charged David Scott Smith, 66, and Travis Shane Smith, 32, with reckless arson. The office also charged the son with illegal conversion or manufacture of a machine gun and both men of illegal possession of a firearm silencer.

Former Governor Focuses on Saving California Forests from Wildfires

As smoke lingered in the air amid another destructive California wildfire season, former Gov. Jerry Brown invited a group to his ranch for an urgent conversation: What more could be done to save California’s forests from wildfires?

The reality of what has become annual fire devastation for the state has become more a part of Brown’s life since he built his retirement home on a stretch of land where his great-grandfather settled in the 1850s, about 60 miles northwest of Sacramento.

Report: Wildfires Have California in ‘Heightened State of Alert’

California, which has seen its eight largest recorded wildfires since 2017, is in a “heightened state of alert,” according to a new report that calls for urgent policy actions.

The report was released on Wednesday and also discussed in a Zoom conference by a panel of experts the same day.

The panel coincidentally occurred the same day that California Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara ordered insurance companies to preserve 209,881 residential property insurance policies held by wildfire survivors included in an earlier emergency declaration, bringing the total statewide to 618,700 policyholders across 31 counties who were granted temporary protection from non-renewals or cancellations by insurers.

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