Due to a trend in increased temperatures, I can now reference my childhood as one lived in “a cooler world.” Then, the topic of climate change was not as popular as it is now. Knowing that it is a factor that has to be fought against time, I am forced to wonder what could I have done in my earlier years to keep my world at cooler temperatures. Learning of the increasing temperatures of earth in the past decade due to climate change, I have learned how unknowing or knowingly humans have contributed to the increase in temperature. During my childhood, I was not aware that the earth would increase in degrees so rapidly that seasons would overlap into each other and the effects would be seen and felt globally. Seeing the live news reports of the 2018 wild fire in California was a grim reminder of the effects of climate change. Understanding how it began, I say it was a cycle waiting to occur with the state’s increasing temperatures and with climate change contributing to its increase.
According to National Geographic 15 of the 20 largest fires in California have occurred since 2000. The devastating wild fire of 2018 dramatically burned 1,893,913 acres of land, becoming the largest amount of burned acreage in the state’s history. Climate change contributed to this damaging wild fire with its increased temperatures and seasonal changes. Seasonal changes have become unusual in the states of California. A precipitation filled season has been shortened while a drier season has been elongated. If a fire is a sparked during a windy season, that fire will travel far and wide at a rapid pace making it challenging for California’s residents to contain in the fire a timely manner. The duration of California’s dry season has increased creating a longer period of time where plants dry out. Over 2 decades, extra warm weather drove water out of trees, plants and soil; leaving the lands in California vulnerable and prepped for fire.
The shocking factor was not just of the number of acres, but rather the lives that were dramatically changed due to this disaster. Being the largest fire in its state’s history it was also the deadliest fire which resulted in leaving approximately two hundred individuals’ missing and killing approximately eighty-eight residents. More than ten thousand structures, mostly residential, were destroyed leaving residents seeking shelter. A natural disaster of this size leaves residents seeking to rebuild and restart a life that drastically changed. The magnitude of one wild fire depicts why and how climate change has been a hot topic in recent years. This is evidence of what will continue to occur if we do not take climate change seriously. In the world we in live now, with the facts of climate change, we still individuals who believe climate change is a hoax ad or a myth. If you were to ask those affected by the California wild fire, they would beg to differ.
In a cooler world, where the weather would be 3 degrees lower than the current temperature, a fire of that magnitude might not have occurred. In a cooler world, seasons would take its usual course as we would normally complain about long and dreary winters. In a cooler world, we would have innovative technology towards lessening the effects of climate change. Unfortunately, we would take for granted the earth’s ecosystem and its normal cycle, if we were in a cooler world.
NIhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Interagency_Fire_CenterFC. November 9, 2018. Retrieved November 9, 2018.