Ongoing forest fires in California are mostly a function of poor forest management, particularly insufficient controlled burns to clear away accumulated fuelwood, explained Bjorn Lomborg, presidentof the Copenhagen Consensus Center and author of False Alarm,offering his remarks on Thursday’s edition of SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Daily with host Alex Marlow.
“It has fairly little to do with climate change, and it has almost everything to do with the fact that we haven’t managed our forest well,” said Lomborg of California wildfires. “We haven’t done prescribed burning. We haven’t ensured that these fires won’t burn out of control.”
Lomborg added, “We’ve just simply allowed fuelwood to build up to cause almost uncontrollable fires in California.”
Prescribed burnings are necessary to reduce the risk of uncontrollable forest fires, Lomborg stated. “If we did prescribed burning, we could, in a few years, reduce the fire risk dramatically and actually get people’s lives back to — pretty close — to normal.”
A “potential connection” between anthropogenic global warming and the frequency or intensity of wildfires in California has yet to emerge in the trend observations.
Scientists have found a “lack of correlation between late summer/autumn wildfires” and “summer precipitation or temperature” in coastal California. In fact, “there is no long-term trend in the number of fires over coastal California” in the last 50 years (Mass and Ovens, 2019).
Subtitle: our failure to live in harmony with nature.
I’m taking a breather today from nonstop hurricane stuff. Well, ‘breather’ may not be quite the right word.
As I’m writing this, I’m looking out into the smoke from the California fires that are blowing into Reno (not to mention much of the rest of the U.S.). Schools in Reno are supposed to be open (they have a good COVID protocol), but have been closed more than half the time for the past month owing to bad air quality from the fires.
The mantra from global warming activists that manmade global warming is causing the fires, and therefore fossil fuels must be eliminated, is rather tiresome, not to mention misses the most important factors. More importantly, even if global warming is having some fractional impact on the wildfires, reducing fossil fuels would fractionally impact the fires but only a time scale of many decades hence.
“California was a very smoky place historically,” says Malcolm North of the US Forest Survey.“Even though we’re seeing area burned that is off-the-charts, it’s still probably less than what used to be burned before Europeans arrived.”
Many reporters note that more area has burned this year in California than at any other point in “the modern period,” but that period began in 1950. For the last half of the 20th Century, the annual area burned in California was just 250,000 acres a year, whereas the best-available science suggests 4.4 and 12 million acres burned in California annually before the arrival of Europeans.
See also: California Has Always Had Fires, Environmentalism Makes Them Worse
On Friday September 4, 2020 at about 6:44 PM PDT the Creek Fire began in the Big Creek drainage area between Shaver Lake, Big Creek and Huntington Lake, Calif. NASA’s Suomi NPP satellite captured these images of the fire on Sep. 05 through Sep. 07, 2020. From the series of images the spread of the fire can be seen in the outward movement of the red hot spots, although the huge cloud on the 6th obscures all readings due to its size.
The huge, dense cloud created on Sep. 05 and seen in the Suomi NPP image was a pyrocumulonimbus cloud (pyroCb) and the resulting smoke plume that grew upward was spotted and confirmed on Sep. 06, 2020. A pyrocumulonimbus cloud is also called a cumulonimbus flammagenitus. The origins of the latter word are from the Latin meaning “flame” and “created from.” This perfectly describes a cloud that is caused by a natural source of heat such as a wildfire or volcano. Rising warm air from the fire can carry water vapor up into the atmosphere causing clouds. Any type of convective cloud can be created. In this case, the cumulonimbus, or thunderhead cloud, was created. Precipitation and lightning can also occur with these types of clouds creating a risk that the fire will expand due to increased wind from precipitation downdraft or by creating new fires due to lightning strikes. These are all things that fire managers must keep in mind while continuing to try to fight the fire.
With wildfires devastating California, it may be worth while seeing if lessons can be learned from Australia. Connections between American and Australian firefighters go back many years, with each helping the other from time to time. There were devastating bushfires in Australia last summer, and, tragically, three Americans who had come to help were killed when their water tanker plane crashed. It’s now Australia’s turn to help California, and let us all hope there is a better outcome.
Submissions to Enquiries
Australia’s federal enquiry into the bushfires is not due to report until 28 October 2020 but the NSW [New South Wales] state enquiry report was published today. There were nearly 2,000 public submissions. Before I go into the report’s recommendations, it may be worth looking at a couple of the public submissions in order to understand the extreme level of public frustration with green tape and the way that the fire hazard has been allowed to grow ever larger over the years.
by P. Homewood, August 26, 2020 in NotaLotofPeopleKnowThat
It’s Not About The Climate
Nobody denies climate change is occurring and playing a role in warmer temperatures and heatwaves. Keeley notes that, since 1960, the variation in spring and summer temperatures explain 50% of the variation in fire frequency and intensity from one year to the next.
But the half-century since 1960 is the same period in which the U.S. government promoted, mostly out of ignorance, the suppression of regular fires which most forests need to allow for new growth.
For much of the 20th Century, U.S. agencies and private landowners suppressed fires as a matter of policy. The results were disastrous: the accumulation of wood fuel resulting in fires that burn so hot they sometimes kill the forest, turning it into shrubland.
The US government started to allow forests in national parks to burn more in the 1960s, and allowed a wider set of forests on public lands to burn starting in the 1990s.
“When I hear climate change discussed it’s suggested that it’s a major reason and it’s not,” Scott Stevens of the University of California, Berkeley, told me.
Redwood forests before Europeans arrived burned every 6 to 25 years. The evidence comes from fire scars on barks and the bases of massive ancient trees, hollowed out by fire, like the one depicted in The New York Times photograph.
“There was severe heat before the lightning that dried-out [wood] fuel,” noted Stevens. “But in Big Basin [redwood park], where fire burned every seven to ten years, there is a high-density of fuel build-up, especially in the forests.”
by C. Rotter, August 20, 2020 in TheDailyCaller/WUWT
Wildfires are scorching California amid a massive heatwave, which is prompting citizens to consume more energy in hopes of staying cool. The increase in consumption resulted in rolling blackouts, as energy regulators managed an over-taxed energy grid.
The wildfires and blackouts are also coming amid a severe economic downturn caused in part by government-imposed lockdowns designed to slow the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
At the same time, a recent fuel tax increase is forcing Californians to pay more at the gas pump. California now has the highest gas prices in the country, data show.
A majority of the world population lives on low lying lands near the sea, some of which are predicted to submerge by the end of the 21st century due to rising sea levels.
The most relevant quantity for assessing the impacts of sea-level change on these communities is the relative sea-level rise – the elevation change between the Earth’s surface height and sea surface height. For an observer standing on the coastland, relative sea-level rise is the net change in the sea level, which also includes the rise and fall of the land beneath observer’s feet.
Now, using precise measurements from state-of-the-art satellite-based interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) that can detect the land surface rise and fall with millimeter accuracy, an Arizona State University research team has, for the first time, tracked the entire California coast’s vertical land motion.
They’ve identified local hotspots of the sinking coast, in the cities of San Diego, Los Angeles, Santa Cruz and San Francisco, with a combined population of 4 to 8 million people exposed to rapid land subsidence, who will be at a higher flooding risk during the decades ahead of projected sea-level rise.
“We have ushered in a new era of coastal mapping at greater than 1,000 fold higher detail and resolution than ever before,” said Manoochehr Shirzaei, who is the principal investigator of the NASA-funded project. “The unprecedented detail and submillimeter accuracy resolved in our vertical land motion dataset can transform the understanding of natural and anthropogenic changes in relative sea-level and associated hazards.”
The results were published in this week’s issue of Science Advances (DOI link here).
Dans un silence remarquable, on vient d’apprendre que les incendies qui ont ravagé la Californie en 2018 ont été causés par des défauts de maintenance dans le réseau électrique et ne devaient rien au réchauffement climatique, rapporte Benoît Rittaud, mathématicien et président de l’Association des climato-réalistes. Tribune.
Calomniez, calomniez, il en restera toujours quelque chose, dit-on. Dans notre monde où l’écologisme est un réflexe pavlovien, ce slogan s’est fait encore plus simple : dès que se produit un drame, toute explication fondée sur le « dérèglement climatique » est présumée correcte. Cette vérité immédiate a alors de bonnes chances de devenir vérité tout court, car qui ira perdre son temps à rétablir les faits après coup, tandis qu’entre-temps tant d’autres drames auront à leur tour « démontré une fois de plus la réalité de la crise ».
Articles, like the one from Politico above (Figure 1)¹, have been popping up left and right claiming that climate change is causing the wildfires.
Endless amounts of disinformation are being spread around on Twitter and Facebook from well-known media outlets, public figures, government officials, and even a handful of well-known scientists.
There’s no doubt that the dozen or more wildfires that have broken out in the state, including the Getty and Kincade fires, are serious.
Firefighters are doing their best to try and contain these fires before any more serious damage occurs. But, playing the blame game on climate change does nothing for public safety whatsoever.
What’s really to blame for these fires?
The Kincade Fire, in particular, was caused by a broken jumper wire of the Pacific Gas & Electric company(PG&E), though “mother nature,” as you will find out below, has enhanced the fire and others that have since broken out across the state.
October through March is the prime time of the year for wildfires to break out in the Western United States (Raphael, 2003).²
This is largely because atmospheric and surface conditions tend to be very favorable in the region for fire weather; that is a.) dry soil and vegetation, b.) low relative humidity, c.) warm temperatures, and d.) strong winds.³
The “Keep it In the Ground,” anti-oil and gas industry movement is going after the industry with more legislation disguised to address health and local control issues, despite that California already has the most environmentally regulated oil and gas production in the world, regulated by more than 25 agencies.
“Keep It in the Ground” is a global protest movement opposing fossil fuel development.
California was the fourth-largest producer of crude oil among the 50 states in 2017, after Texas, North Dakota, and Alaska, and, as of January 2018, third in oil refining capacity after Texas and Louisiana.
AB 345 by Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi (D-Torrance), would increase setback distance between oil production facilities and private and public property to 2,500 feet for every well, existing or planned in the state.
According to the Western States Petroleum Association and the California Independent Petroleum Association, this bill, if passed, would effectively end oil production in many parts of the state and threaten the future of production IN ALL PARTS OF THE STATE, for example:
87% of all wells in the City of Los Angeles would be shut in
66% of the well in Los Angeles County would be shut in
Over 8,000 homes and businesses have been reduced to ashes and rubble by the latest California conflagrations. Well over 60 people have perished, over 50,000 are homeless, hundreds remain missing. “This is the new abnormal,” Governor Jerry Brown insists. “Dryness, warmth, drought, all those things are going to intensify,” because of climate change. Even if we do more on forest management, that won’t stop climate change. “And those who deny that are definitely contributing to the tragedies.”
Those assertions have no basis in fact. The hard, incontrovertible reality is that California has always been a largely arid state, afflicted by prolonged droughts, interspersed with periods of intense rainfall, and buffeted almost every autumn by strong winds that can whip forest fires into infernos. The problem isn’t climate change. It’s ideological, even criminally incompetent forest management practices demanded by politicians, regulators, judges and environmentalists in recent decades. My article presents the real story.
La géologie, une science plus que passionnante … et diverse