#wildfires
Could A New Gel Prevent California’s Deadly Wildfires?

Could A New Gel Prevent California’s Deadly Wildfires?

Working to prevent wildfires in California has come with its own set of challenges. This year, California’s largest utility, PG&E, announced that it will cut off power on high-wind days to prevent sparks from turning into fires, which is a good safety precaution but has also proved cumbersome for residents and businesses. However, a newly-developed spray-on sticky gel might soon provide long-term protection against wildfires–something that other flame retardants haven’t been able to do effectively.Why This Matters: In California, about 70% of wildfires break out near known ignition hazards, such as roads which means that scientists and officials have a decent idea of the zones that can be blanket sprayed with flame retardants.

 

Continue Reading 423 words
Southern States Face Drought and Risks of Wildfires

Southern States Face Drought and Risks of Wildfires

Although the hottest story in the media right now is impeachment it’s important not to forget that a worsening drought is affecting Southern states from Texas to Georgia. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has extended a drought disaster declaration to numerous counties in the state due to significantly low rainfall and prolonged dry conditions that continue […]

Continue Reading 530 words
Toxic Chemicals Churned Up By Natural Disasters a Long-Term Threat to Human Health

Toxic Chemicals Churned Up By Natural Disasters a Long-Term Threat to Human Health

Climate change often compounds natural disasters such as fueling wildfires and increasing the risk for catastrophic flooding. While this results in billions of dollars of damage new evidence has revealed that these disasters are also stirring up toxic chemicals and making Americans sick. As the New York Times reported, “By knocking chemicals loose from soil, […]

Continue Reading 506 words

Want the planet in your inbox?

Stay in the know, empower yourself to be a #FriendOfThePlanet, sign up to receive ODP in your inbox each morning!

Not Beating the Heat: Fires Across Arctic, Global Extremes in June

Not Beating the Heat: Fires Across Arctic, Global Extremes in June

The U.S. heatwave over the weekend (and it was hot — New York and Boston both set high temp records on Saturday) overshadowed some disturbing new photos that emerged late last week of vast fires in Siberia due to dried out swaths of peatland (aka bogs or swamps) that are usually frozen and soggy at […]

Continue Reading 559 words
Flames Engulf Alberta as Wildfire Season Returns

Flames Engulf Alberta as Wildfire Season Returns

Wildfire season has returned to North America with deadly force as 28 fires continue to rage across in Alberta, Canada and have burned more than 700,000 acres of land while forcing over 11,000 people to evacuate. The fires have been burning since the end of May and despite military aid and fire fighting efforts, dry […]

Continue Reading 357 words

The Week Ahead: May 6-10

Happy Monday #FriendsofthePlanet!  We hope you had a great Cinco de Mayo and that you’ve recovered from Game of Thrones or the NBA or NHL Playoff excitement.  How about that quadruple overtime game in Portland on Friday night not to mention the controversial finish in the Kentucky Derby!  It is going to be another busy […]

Continue Reading 418 words
Forests are becoming slow to recover after wildfires

Forests are becoming slow to recover after wildfires

Wildfires across the Western United States have been made more intense and more frequent due to climate change and now a team of researchers from the University of Montana, the University of Colorado and the U.S. Forest Service have found evidence suggesting that low-elevation forests have been facing difficult recoveries after forest fires also as […]

Continue Reading 412 words
18 million trees died in California raising concern for upcoming fire season

18 million trees died in California raising concern for upcoming fire season

The U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service released data this week from its latest federal tree mortality count which found that an estimated 18 million trees have died in California wildlands and private property in the past year, many of them victims of recent droughts and bark beetle infestations.

Continue Reading 277 words
PG&E files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy

PG&E files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy

It’s been a long road for Pacific Gas and Electric, after facing possible murder charges for its role in California’s recent wildfires as well as lawsuits from survivors, the utility has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. As PV Magazine explained, the filing is a financial move that allows PG&E to reorganize its debts, and does not involve […]

Continue Reading 342 words
Increasingly frequent wildfires threaten California’s shrublands

Increasingly frequent wildfires threaten California’s shrublands

California’s chaparral ecosystem is the state’s iconic shrub-dominant vegetation that covers broad areas of foothills stretching across the state but particularly southern California. Chaparral wilderness occupies more than 8.5 million acres and the drought-resistant and woody shrubs and as the California Chaparral Institute explained, provides essential protection against erosion, allows underground water supplies to recharge, moderates local climates, provides important habitat for an interesting assortment of animals. Yet because of the increasing frequency of major wildfires in California, these shrublands are coming further under threat.

Continue Reading 340 words
Gov shutdown freezes vital research and training programs

Gov shutdown freezes vital research and training programs

As of the morning, the federal government shutdown has entered into its 24th day, making it the longest shutdown in US history. While 800,000 federal workers are caught in the crosshairs of the shutdown (and most of them missed a paycheck last Friday), countless amounts of scientists and other workers have had their research work frozen as well.

Continue Reading 408 words