Oregon Bootleg Wildfire Adds onto Climate Change Concerns

Since July 6, wildfires have been burning continuously in 13 states with 83 large fires. At least 1,293,636 acres were burnt and more than 19,300 wildland firefighters and support personnel have been assigned to incidents. Most recently, the Bootleg Wildfire in Oregon is becoming a concern as it has destroyed 388,350 acreages overnight between Monday and Tuesday.

According to National Interagency Fire Center, “Seven fuels and fire behavior advisories have been issued for south/central Idaho, Northern California, Northern Rockies, and south/central Oregon. Many of these advisories describe extraordinarily dry fuels, resulting in elevated fire potential and fire activity.” It is currently only 30 percent contained.

The Governor of Oregon has attributed the increased number of uncontrollable yearly wildfires to climate change, citing the heatwave just a couple of weeks ago, the ice storms in February, and the loss of power in fall.

The fires are adding to additional heat in the atmosphere and create a type of clouds that create their own mini thunderstorm environment with strong winds and lightning for more chances of wildfires. With continued dry storms in the west, this can only lead to more hazardous conditions for people living in that region, as well as a higher risk for even more wildfires in the region.

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