California is on fire again, with massive wildfires devouring hundreds of thousands of acres in separate regions at both ends of the state. The largest, the Camp Fire, has burned over 100,000 acres in Butte County since it initially started on November 8, killing 26 people and destroying over 6,700 buildings. The Woolsey and Hill Fires in Los Angeles and Ventura counties have consumed nearly 75,000 acres between the two conflagrations, leaving two known dead so far. President Donald J.
Scores of wildfires are burning across the Western Canadian wilderness, with more than 2 million hectares of woodland currently burning. 1,400 soldiers have been called into Saskatchewan alone, to relieve the 600 exhausted firefighters that have been battling the province-wide blazes. While fatalities are rare in instances such as this, one firefighter in British Columbia has been killed.
The resulting community evacuations are on a historic scale: the Red Cross in Saskatchewan hasn’t seen an evacuation of this scale in their history, of which has involved over 10,000 people in 50 communities. The refugees have been scattered across Saskatchewan and Alberta, now housed in community and recreation centers across the two provinces.
A few weeks ago, Unknown Country reported that NASA were investing millions of dollars into a new laser-based instrument, located on the International Space Station, which is intended to provide a unique 3-D view of Earth’s forests. The focus of its mission is to provide definitive information about the role of forests in the carbon cycle, and as such, in global warming.
The laser, known as the Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) lidar, the instrument will be the first to systematically probe the depths of the forests from space, and assess how they affect our weather systems and other ecosystems.
While the media concentrates on John Mark Karr and his claims about a pitiful, decade-old murder, the real story is totally ignored, which is that forest fires are sweeping the world right now at an unprecedented rate. To see what?s happening, click on the image. What is worse, as they grow in number and strength worldwide, they are unleashing mercury that has polluted the wetlands in the north since at least the dawn of the Industrial Revolution.
These fires in the north of the US are releasing mercury at levels up to 15 times greater than forest fires elsewhere. As we?ve reported in the past, global warming has dried out the forests, making them vulnerable to fire.