Sumpter Township residents asked to avoid outside burning amid high wildfire risk
SUMPTER TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Authorities are urging residents of Sumpter Township to avoid “outside burning of any kind” as the region is considered at high risk for wildfires Thursday. According to the Sumpter Township Police Department, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has identified the township area as being at very high risk of wildfires due to dry ground conditions. Residents are being asked to avoid any outdoor burning activities to prevent a wildland fire. Authorities say they have responded to several wildland and/or field fires in the surrounding area over the past week, and five within Sumpter Township over the last two days. Sumpter Township police say that residents whose “negligent activity leads to wildland fire and subsequent property destruction can be held liable, both criminally and civilly.”To learn more about fire safety, visit the DNR’s website right here.
Study: Wildfires produced up to half of pollution in US West
Researchers say smoke from wildfires accounted for up to half of all small particle air pollution in parts of the western U.S. in recent years (AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File)BILLINGS, Mont. – Wildfire smoke accounted for up to half of all health-damaging small particle air pollution in the western U.S. in recent years as warming temperatures fueled more destructive blazes, according to a study released Monday. Nationwide, wildfires were the source of up to 25% of small particle pollution in some years, the researchers said. But it’s difficult to separate how much of the increase in smoke pollution is driven by climate change versus the forest fuel buildup, she added. The new study matches up with previous research documenting the increasing proportion of pollution that comes from wildfire smoke, said Dan Jaffe, a wildfire pollution expert at the University of Washington.
Record-breaking California wildfires surpass 4 million acres
“And that number will grow.”So far, in this year’s historic fire season, more than 8,200 California wildfires have killed 31 people and scorched “well over 4 million acres in California” or 6,250 square miles, Cal Fire said Sunday in a statement. The astonishing figure is more than double the 2018 record of 1.67 million burned acres (2,609 square miles) in California. Numerous studies have linked bigger wildfires in America to climate change from the burning of coal, oil and gas. Virtually all the damage has occurred since mid-August, when five of the six largest fires in state history erupted. Flannigan, the fire scientist, estimates the area of land burned from wildfires in California has increased fivefold since the 1970s.
California wildfire likely to grow from wind, low humidity
The blaze, known as the Bobcat Fire, is expected to grow through Sunday and Monday as critical fire weather conditions continued due to gusty wind and low humidity. The Bobcat Fire started Sept. 6 and has already doubled in size over the last week — becoming one of Los Angeles County's largest wildfires in history, according to the Los Angeles Times. Though the Bobcat Fire neared the high desert community of Valyermo, a Benedictine monastery there appeared to have escaped major damage, according to the Los Angeles Times. More than 7,900 wildfires have burned more than 5,468 square miles (14,164 square kilometers) in California this year, including many since a mid-August barrage of dry lightning ignited parched vegetation. Meanwhile, officials were investigating the death of a firefighter on the lines of another Southern California wildfire that erupted earlier this month from a smoke-generating pyrotechnic device used by a couple to reveal their baby’s gender.
Battle on to save Brazil's tropical wetlands from flames
An recently burned area at the Encontro das Aguas park at the Pantanal wetlands near Pocone, Mato Grosso state, Brazil, Saturday, Sept. 12, 2020. Wildfire has infiltrated the park as the number of fires at the world's biggest tropical wetlands has more than doubled in the first half of 2020, according to data released by a state institute. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)BRASILIA – A vast swath of a vital wetlands is burning in Brazil, sweeping across several national parks and obscuring the sun behind dense smoke. From January through August, the number of fires more than tripled, topping 10,000. On Friday, Brazil's navy used a helicopter to rescue a burned jaguar cub and take it to a veterinary hospital.