NBC News examines the state of forest management in California, taking a deeper look at the complex web of policies and ownership that has contributed to the cataclysmic forest fires of late.
California's devastating fires are prompting calls for more aggressive forest management. One way to do that is through prescribed burns, meaning fires set on purpose. But there are challenges to doing more of them, as Capital Public Radio's Ezra David Romero reports.
Scientists say as temperatures continue to warm, drying out brush, grasses and trees into explosively flammable fuel by late summer and autumn, catastrophic fires and the unhealthy smoke they spew hundreds of miles away will almost certainly become more frequent in California and across the West in the coming years.
Much of California’s forestland is overgrown, partly because of federal regulations implemented in 1910, which mandated stamping out wildfires as soon as possible. These policies were revised around the 1970s to allow some fires to naturally burn their course, but much of the West has struggled to do so.
Berkeley Forests Co-Director William Stewart speaks to Capital Public Radio about what concerns geologists as winter storms move through the areas hit by wildfire this year.
California will see widespread rain and heavy Sierra Nevada snowfall through midweek, potentially bringing travel problems and raising the risk of damaging runoff from wildfire burn scars, forecasters said Tuesday.
NPR's David Green and Montana Public Radio's Eric Whitney take a closer look at one of the many dangers as residents try to return to a place devastated by a wildfire - huge trees, weakened by the fire, that can come crashing down without any warning. Featuring Scott Stephens, Co-Director, Berkeley Forests.