The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Frightening Interactive Wildfire Map Shows That the West Is on Fire
Climate Central, a dedicated team of scientists and journalists researching climate change, has put together an interactive map that shows in real time the active wildfires in the U.S. Each flame icon indicates an active wildfire.
Climate Central explains:
Hover over a given fire to see its name, and if you zoom in you’ll be able to see the outline of the area that’s burning—the so-called fire perimeter. If you click within the perimeter, a window pops up showing the fire’s size in acres, the amount by which the perimeter has grown or shrunk over the past 24 hours, the fraction of the fire that has been contained and other data. There’s also a link to an even more detailed report.
A few months ago, experts predicted that this season would be the worst one yet for wildfires and so far it's shaping up to be. Alaska, in particular, has seen an astounding number of fires with a record area burned this year. So far this year, fires have burned nearly 5 million acres, an area the size of Connecticut. Climate Central reports that because of climate change, Alaska is entering a new era for wildfires.
— CBS News (@CBSNews) July 28, 2015
And it's not just Alaska, but the entire West, as evidenced by the map above. Due to high temperatures, record low snowfall and an epic drought, this year is the second-highest for total acreage burned in at least the past 25 years, according to data from the National Interagency Fire Center.
The interactive map is based on data from the Geospatial Multi-Agency Coordination Group. The information is updated daily from reports by fire managers on the scene, satellite imagery and GPS data, among other sources.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Dr. Brian R. Shmaefsky
One year after the Flint Water Crisis I was invited to participate in a water rights session at a conference hosted by the US Human Rights Network in Austin, Texas in 2015. The reason I was at the conference was to promote efforts by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) to encourage scientists to shine a light on how science intersects with human rights, in the U.S. as well as in the context of international development. My plan was to sit at an information booth and share my stories about water quality projects I spearheaded in communities in Bangladesh, Colombia, and the Philippines. I did not expect to be thrown into conversations that made me reexamine how scientists use their knowledge as a public good.
The shipping industry is coming to grips with its egregious carbon footprint, as it has an outsized contribution to greenhouse gas emissions and to the dumping of chemicals into open seas. Already, the global shipping industry contributes about 2 percent of global carbon emissions, about the same as Germany, as the BBC reported.
The Jefferson Memorial in Washington, DC overlooks the Tidal Basin, a man-made body of water surrounded by cherry trees. Visitors can stroll along the water's edge, gazing up at the stately monument.
But at high tide, people are forced off parts of the path. Twice a day, the Tidal Basin floods and water spills onto the walkway.