Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Wildfires, Heat Waves, Sea Level Rise to Be Increasingly Destructive to California, State Climate Change Report Warns

Climate
Wildfires, Heat Waves, Sea Level Rise to Be Increasingly Destructive to California, State Climate Change Report Warns
The Shasta Dam is one of California's two largest, with a storage capacity of 4.55 million acre feet. The fourth Climate Change Assessment considers climate change impacts to the state's water infrastructure. Apaliwal / CC BY 3.0

Climate change will create a devastating new normal in California of intense heatwaves and destructive fires if nothing is done to curb emissions, a new state report finds.

California's fourth-annual Climate Change Assessment finds that large fires like this summer's record-breaking Mendocino Complex and Carr fires will increase 50 percent by 2100 and burn 77 percent more land under a business-as-usual emissions scenario.


The report also finds 31 to 67 percent of beaches could erode by 2100, deaths from heat waves in cities could double or triple by 2050, and water supply from snowpack could decline by two-thirds by 2050.

As reported by the Los Angeles Times:

"This year has been kind of a harbinger of potential problems to come," said Daniel Cayan, a climate researcher at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and one of the scientists coordinating the report. "The number of extremes that we've seen is consistent with what model projections are pointing to, and they're giving us an example of what we need to prepare for."
State leaders vowed to act on the research, even as the Trump administration moves to unravel climate change regulations and allow more pollution from cars, trucks and coal-fired power plants.

"In California, facts and science still matter," Gov. Jerry Brown said in a statement. "These findings are profoundly serious and will continue to guide us as we confront the apocalyptic threat of irreversible climate change."

For a deeper dive:

LA Times, SF Chronicle, The Guardian, InsideClimate News, Fortune

For more climate change and clean energy news, you can follow Climate Nexus on Twitter and Facebook, and sign up for daily Hot News.

An Edith's Checkerspot butterfly in Los Padres National Forest in Southern California. Patricia Marroquin / Moment / Getty Images

Butterflies across the U.S. West are disappearing, and now researchers say the climate crisis is largely to blame.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

A wildfire burns in the Hollywood hills on July 19, 2016 in Hollywood, California. AaronP / Bauer-Griffin / GC Images

California faces another "critically dry year" according to state officials, and a destructive wildfire season looms on its horizon. But in a state that welcomes innovation, water efficacy approaches and drought management could replenish California, increasingly threatened by the climate's new extremes.

Read More Show Less

Trending

Wisdom is seen with her chick in Feb. 2021 at the Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge. Jon Brack / Friends of Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge / Flickr / CC 2.0

Wisdom the mōlī, or Laysan albatross, is the oldest wild bird known to science at the age of at least 70. She is also, as of February 1, a new mother.

Read More Show Less
Wind turbines in Norway. piola66 / E+ / Getty Images

By Hui Hu

Winter is supposed to be the best season for wind power – the winds are stronger, and since air density increases as the temperature drops, more force is pushing on the blades. But winter also comes with a problem: freezing weather.

Read More Show Less
Jaffa Port in Israel. theDOCK innovated the Israeli maritime space and kickstarted a boom in new technologies. Pixabay

While traditional investment in the ocean technology sector has been tentative, growth in Israeli maritime innovations has been exponential in the last few years, and environmental concern has come to the forefront.

Read More Show Less