How Wildfires Are Affecting our Climate and Community.
“Up to 90% of forest fires in the US are caused by humans.” -worldatlas.com
The impact forest fires have on air quality is something that affects us all. You may have noticed the recent dramatic change in the air quality as Oregon’s wildfire season gets an early start. In the western U.S., the results of longer fire seasons (the release of CO2 and CO) have been connected to climate change which in turn creates a feedback loop of longer and stronger fire seasons.
JPL and NASA are actually studying wildfires and it’s effects on Earth’s landscape and climate. By looking at the severity of fires, and the physical aftermath of fires like the charred remains, new growth, and post-fire land erosion, researchers can get a lot of information about the impacts of fire on the land. This data is then useful for fire prevention strategies for groups like the US Forest Service and wildland firefighting teams.
Here is a great article from JPL that includes a very informative video about the data collection of wildfires in the American West.
National Geographic has a ton of great resources for students to learn more about wildfires and their effects on the planet.
USGS offers great online resources for information on the science around wildfires.
Fire Weather and Avalanche Center has a helpful map to view current and recent sites of wildfires.
Oregon Department of Forestry wildfire information.
If you are looking for some outdoor spaces to enjoy in our community, visit our Regional Asset Map.