Archive for July 24th, 2013

Ever More Fierce Fire Storms: America Keeps Burning Itself Away!

posted by Sarah N Worthy IATTWJ Member @ 1:06 AM
July 24, 2013

A firefighter gestures as flames from a wildfire burn at a horse ranch in Lancaster, California      While both coasts seem to have a reprieve from excessively hot weather, hurricanes, tornadoes, wildfires, etc., rest assured these are not over.  Especially the drought, hot weather and thunderstorms mean that even worst fires are to come.

As Alicia Chang and Seth Borenstein write for the Associated Press in ‘Climate Change and Wildfires:  Bigger, Fiercer Blazes Expected In West:’“There’s a dangerous but basic equation behind the killer Yarnell Hill wildfire and other blazes raging across the West this summer: More heat, more drought, more fuel and more people in the way are adding up to increasingly ferocious fires.”

In short, much of the U.S. is being burned away: “Since Jan. 1, 2000, about 145,000 square miles have burned, roughly the size of New York, New England, New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland combined, according to federal records.”

Felicity Barringer and Kenneth Chang quote fire historian, Stephen J. Pyne:  “In many landscapes you’ve enhanced the natural combustibility by building hundreds of thousands of homes in fire-prone areas . . .”

They also cite testimony from Roger B. Hammer, demographer at Oregon State University who told the House of Representatives that in the Western U.S. during the 1990s builders added 2.2 million housing units in fire-prone areas.

Yet experts point out fire fighters’ budgets has been cut.  Also Dr. Craig D. Allen from the U.S. Geological Survey Station in New Mexico points out that the fire season has lengthened by two months going even into winter, and that hotter fires are killing for more trees than they use to, even “many thousands of acres.”

Moreover, today’s fires are not behaving ‘normally.’  Global Warming means hotter weather, and Chang and Borenstein mention fire ecologist Steve Running of the University of Montana:

“Even a degree or so warmer, day in day out, evaporates water faster and that desiccates the system more.”  He also THE BLACK FOREST FIRE CONTINUES TO BURN NORTHEAST OF COLORADO SPRINGS, CO.reports firefighters complain about how fire flames “go berserk in ways they never used to see.”

Climate scientist Jonathan Overpeck of the University of Arizona told Chang and Borenstein that “unless greenhouse gas emissions are curbed, huge, fierce wildfires will become the norm.”  So once more, the problem is Global Warming!

Experts say just let fires burn out.  University of Montana fire scientist, and a fire fighter himself, Carl Seielstad says:  “Governments also need to rethink the way they deal with fires, which could mean just letting some burn rather than sending fire crews into increasingly intense and unpredictable situations.

Again, unnecessary real estate expansion has not only robbed animals of their habitats, it endangered people, devastated communities, leveled needed trees, and now led to the deaths of at least 19 brave forest fighters.

When will we stop being our own enemy.  As Proverbs 29: 1 says in wholesale Christian Bibles:  “He, that being often reproved hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy.”

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