wildfires

Increase in Lightning Strikes Expected to Ignite More Wildfires

Increase in Lightning Strikes Expected to Ignite More Wildfires

As the planet’s temperature warms, the frequency of lightning strikes is expected to grow with it, Environmental Journal reported. Currently, lightning strikes the earth’s surface nearly eight million times a day. This number is expected to dramatically increase as global temperatures rise, according to a study published by Science. The U.S., for example, could experience […]

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    2020 Sets New U.S. Wildfire Record

    2020 Sets New U.S. Wildfire Record

    Wildfires burned more acres this year in the U.S. than ever before in modern records, E&E reports based on data published by the National Interagency Fire Center. Extreme heat, fueled by climate change caused by extracting and burning fossil fuels, dries vegetation and turns vast swaths of forest into a tinderbox. “In 2020 we saw […]

    The Top 10 Extreme Weather and Climate Events of 2020

    The Top 10 Extreme Weather and Climate Events of 2020

    By Jeff Masters, PhD and Dana Nuccitelli Calendar year 2020 was an extreme and abnormal year, in so many ways. The global coronavirus pandemic altered people’s lives around the world, as did extreme weather and climate events. Let’s review the year’s top 10 such events. 1. Hottest Year on Record? The official rankings will not […]

    Wildfires May Worsen Asthma in the Western United States

    Wildfires May Worsen Asthma in the Western United States

    By Alison Gold Wildfire activity has increasingly threatened life in the western United States over the past several decades. Many of this year’s record-setting wildfires raged over hundreds of thousands of acres. However, one of their most dangerous and understudied effects is too small to perceive with the naked eye: the tiny particles that can […]

    Federal Wildfire Responses Subject to Racism, Economic Disparities, Study Finds

    Federal Wildfire Responses Subject to Racism, Economic Disparities, Study Finds

    The federal government is more likely to take action aimed at reducing the severity of future wildfires in white and wealthy communities, according to new findings reported by the New York Times. Poor households and people of color are disproportionately hurt by wildfires because they are often more physically exposed and are less likely to […]

    Bipartisan Climate Bill Highlights Forest Restoration, Conservation

    Bipartisan Climate Bill Highlights Forest Restoration, Conservation

    In an era of extreme political polarization, opportunities for bipartisan efforts on climate change may seem impossible, but a recent introduction of rare climate legislation, authored by Republican and Democratic senators, could pioneer future agreements. Last Wednesday, U.S. Senators Mike Braun (R-Ind.) and Chris Coons (D-Del.), co-chairs of the Bipartisan Senate Climate Solutions Caucus, introduced […]

    Plastic Pipes Are Polluting Drinking Water Systems After Wildfires

    Plastic Pipes Are Polluting Drinking Water Systems After Wildfires

    By Andrew J. Whelton, Amisha Shah and Kristofer P. Isaacson When wildfires swept through the hills near Santa Cruz, California, in 2020, they released toxic chemicals into the water supplies of at least two communities. One sample found benzene, a carcinogen, at 40 times the state’s drinking water standard. Our testing has now confirmed a […]

    The Arctic Is Drastically Changing Due to Climate Change: Watch New Video From NOAA

    The Arctic Is Drastically Changing Due to Climate Change: Watch New Video From NOAA

    Global warming is rapidly changing the Arctic into a region that is, “warmer, less frozen, and biologically changed in ways that are scarcely imaginable even a generation ago,” according to NOAA’s annual Arctic report card, released Tuesday. That description, from Rick Thoman, a University of Alaska scientist and one of the editors of the assessment, […]

    143 Million Mammals Lost in Australia Wildfires, New Report Finds

    143 Million Mammals Lost in Australia Wildfires, New Report Finds

    A new report about Australia’s wildlife loss following the 2019-2020 wildfires reveals a staggering number. The sobering findings, calculated by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF)-Australia, determined that 143 million native mammals were likely killed, including more than 61,000 koalas. Ten scientists and researchers worked on the labor-intensive report, factoring in limitations for concluding total numbers. […]