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Indybay Feature
Mon Sep 14 2020 (Updated 09/22/20)
"These Are Climate Fires"
Climate Change Takes Center Stage as the West Coast Burns and Burns
In Northern California, more than 10,000 lightning strikes triggered hundreds of fires in August. Tens of thousands have been forced to evacuate. Smoke from the fires pushed air quality throughout the state to dangerously unhealthy levels. While fire is normal in California, the sort of out-of-control wildfires that spread rapidly and burn ferociously every few weeks are neither natural nor inevitable.

Wetter weather earlier in the year results in greater brush growth which then dries out when hotter-than-usual weather later in the year turns it into fuel. Climate scientists predicted that “a much greater number of extremely wet and extremely dry weather seasons” will “have a major effect on the lives of Californians.”

President Trump has said little about the wildfires raging in California, Oregon and Washington for weeks, other than to suggest poor forest management was primarily to blame. “These are climate fires,” says Timothy Ingalsbee, an Oregon-based wildland fire ecologist and former wildland firefighter who now directs Firefighters United for Safety, Ethics, and Ecology. “Though some scientists hesitate to attribute a single event to climate change, these are exactly the conditions predicted by climatologists.”

photo Karuk Tribe Declares State of Emergency due to Deadly Slater Fire | photo “These Are Climate Fires”: Oregon Firefighter Ecologist Says Devastating Blazes Are a Wake-Up Call | The True Facts About the Oregon Fires, With a Video Proving It | photo California: The Center of the White-West is Burning | Fighting Fire With Fire: What Tribal People Know About Forest Ecosystems | photo Arrest at Extinction Rebellion Protest

See Also: The Day the Sky Turned Orange

Related Feature: Clean Air and Fire Safety Concerns at Mendocino Wood Pellet Plant | Fires & Blackouts: Californians Call for Public Takeover of PG&E (2019) | Fire Season of 2018 Brings Historic Devastation | PG&E's Role in Deadly Wildfires Questioned (2017)
09/27/21 Dozens of Pro-Choice Protests Hit Northern California, Along with Nationwide Actions Front Page | Womyn | Central Valley | San Francisco | South Bay | East Bay | Peninsula | North Bay / Marin | California | Government & Elections | Santa Cruz Indymedia09/20/21 Climate Protest Signs and Street Theater Shut Down San Francisco's Montgomery Street Front Page | Environment & Forest Defense | San Francisco08/17/21 Activists Set Up Tents and Demonstrate for Alternatives to Being on the Streets Front Page | Health, Housing & Public Services | Central Valley | Government & Elections08/17/21 15,910 Square Miles of Critical Habitat Added to Existing Salish Sea Protections Front Page | Environment & Forest Defense | San Francisco | Peninsula | North Bay / Marin | North Coast | California | U.S. | Animal Liberation | Santa Cruz Indymedia08/17/21 Yemeni Community Holds Memorial for Children Killed in US-Saudi Bombing in 2018 Front Page | Anti-War | San Francisco | U.S. | International07/28/21 Construction of Tar Sands Oil Pipeline Violates Treaty Rights of Minnesota Tribes Front Page | Environment & Forest Defense | Racial Justice | San Francisco | California | U.S. | Santa Cruz Indymedia07/27/21 Report Finds CA Oil Emits More Carbon Dioxide Than Global Supply Refined in State Front Page | Environment & Forest Defense | California07/27/21 Dead Whales Washing Up on Bay Area Beaches Is a Wake-up Call Environment & Forest Defense | San Francisco | California | Animal Liberation07/27/21 Photographs of 'Beckwourth' Pack Captured on Trail Camera Front Page | Environment & Forest Defense | Central Valley | California | Animal Liberation07/27/21 People's March and Rally Returns in Absence of Pride Parade in San Francisco This Year Front Page | LGBTI / Queer | San Francisco07/27/21 Street Theater, Song and Dance in Protest at Caltrans' Headquarters in Oakland Front Page | Police State & Prisons | Health, Housing & Public Services | East Bay | California
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