Governor Proposes $536 Million To Fight 2021 California Wildfire Season

Governor Proposes $536 Million To Fight 2021 California Wildfire Season

As California’s wildfire season approaches, Governor Gavin Newsom is proposing $536 million in emergency and other funding to combat and prevent fires this year. The plan invests in additional firefighters, fuel breaks around vulnerable communities, and wildfire response capacity.  

Why This Matters: California’s 2020 fire season burned a record-breaking 4.2 million acres and experts say that severe drought may make this season even more destructive.

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Due To Extended Drought, This Year’s Fire Season Could Be Worse Than Last

Due To Extended Drought, This Year’s Fire Season Could Be Worse Than Last

Last year’s wildfire season was exceptionally bad — more than 4.2 million acres burned in California alone in 2020. Experts suspect that this year could also bring severe wildfires, given that 40% of the West is being classified as being in “extreme” to “exceptional” drought. 

Why this Matters:  The West has had seasons of drought throughout its history, but with climate change and a boom in population growth, an increase in water demand could make the West even drier as we confront the reality of climate change.

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As First Residents Return to Paradise, Study Shows Cali Forest Fires Have Increased 800%

As First Residents Return to Paradise, Study Shows Cali Forest Fires Have Increased 800%

A study just published in the Journal Earth’s Future found that as a result of California’s increasingly long and dry summers caused by climate change, the state overall has experienced in the last 50 years a 500% increase in the amount of land burned in fires.  While non-forest areas have not experienced a huge increase in fires in those areas, forested areas have seen an 800% increase in areas that have burned. 

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