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5 of California’s 6 Largest Fires on Record Are Burning Now: The Astonishing 2020 Wildfire Season in Context

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/10/06/5-californias-6-largest-fires-record-are-burning-now-astonishing-2020-wildfire

we will need coordinated forest management efforts in addition to emissions reductions to minimize the scale of future fires

I appreciate Dahl’s attempt to convey to the rest of the world the scale of how bad off we are out here in California (we natives kinda already know, ourselves – where there’s smoke!) It frustrates me to hear “forest management” dragged out by a climate scientist, because the Climate Catastrophe leaves all previous notions of forest management, conceived for a past-tense planet, in the rear-view mirror.

It’s not just California (or North America’s left coast, for that matter). Point me to the continental forest ecosystem, anywhere on Earth, which is not currently undergoing a rapid rebirth through fire into a non- forest ecosystem. The planet has turned the page and these forests aren’t coming back. Nowhere on Earth can the forests be reasonably expected to come back, after burning down. I doubt if this transition can be managed at all. It’s the result of going far beyond the point of no return with CO2 emissions. The attitude that planet Earth needs management is how we got into such a mess.

But if, on an emergency basis, some form of conscious intervention, or management, were called for, you might as well call it ecosystem transition management. The global forest, as such, is waving bye-bye.

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Kristy Dahl has given us a way to understand the magnitude of these fires as a central point for consideration. This is where we are now. Excellent article.

What to do, forest management yes, and people management as well.

I just can’t address the role these areas translate to in the health and well being of the many species that live there and the people that experience this holistically.

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Historically, the height of fire season should only be commencing around now, when already more than four million acres in California have burned.