As COVID-19 Cases Continue to Rise, West Coast Burns

There were confirmed new cases of 36,500 Covid-19 cases on September 10, 2020, bringing the total confirmed case to 6,471,218 in the US. Of course, only about 2,764,361 cases are active currently. But many living on the Pacific west coast are dealing with another problem making breathing difficult.

There are currently more than 13 states being impacted by wildfires, not just California. From Alaska, Washington, Oregon, and California to Texas, almost half of the US is currently battling wildfires.

In many of these states, citizens are struggling between choosing to open the window to breathe in smoke, or to stay stuffed up inside their homes due to Covid-19 pandemic and the risk of going elsewhere.

For example, the Governor of Oregon has declared a state of emergency for the wildfires, as well as extending the state of emergency for COVID-19 for another 60 days until November 3, 2020.

The current state of affairs have forced evacuations for many, as well as putting much strain on the states’ fire-fighting resources. The heat wave has eased a bit for California, and the shift in wind has finally allowed the Utilities to turn the electricity back on.

Nonetheless, the effects of the wind storms continue to have lasting effect in the region. More than half a million acres of forests and grassland have burned in California on Wednesday alone.

A blaze in Butte County has killed at least 3 people.

Air quality throughout San Francisco Bay area have reached unhealthy levels, with thick smoke blanketing much of the Pacific west and Northwest. What is very concerning is that the wildfires have not reached their worst of the season, as wildfires become most dangerous when the dry winds pick up in the fall months.

Unfortunately for the West Coast, there is a ridge of high pressure that has pinned the smoke in place, which means that it will be a while before California, Oregon, and Washington gets any relief from the heavy smoke and soot.

As the climate of the American West continues to show extremes unseen in previous eras, many are worried for their safety, as well as feeling the pressures of anxiety, stress, and fear.

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