malibu fires

Wed, 2007-10-24 10:43Emily Murgatroyd
Emily Murgatroyd's picture

The Planet Heats Up and The Fires Rage On

The catastrophic fires in California are not a new phenomenon in that state, but what sets this particular burn apart from those in the past is the intensity and the vast area of land that the fires have covered. While arson and downed power lines are blamed as the perpetrators, their willing accomplices are associated with climate change.

According to Ronald Neilson, a professor at Oregon State University and bioclimatologist with the USDA Forest Service, the fires are in line with what climate change models have been predicting for a long time - both in short term forecasts and long term patterns. Studies from five years ago that Neilson was involved with, predicted that the American west would become both warmer and wetter, creating a landscape ripe for catastrophe.

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