Two stories appeared in the Medford Mail Tribune bearing a July 29 dateline on the wildfires in Southern Oregon, yet nary a mention of global warming and its climate change consequences in either despite the fat that date of Spring snowmelt and growing season temperature are the major predictors of wildfire risk. An educable moment was lost as our media failed us again.
You think fires are bad now … by Damian Mann, Medford Mail Tribune, July 29th
If you think we’ve had a horrible run of fire years recently, turn back the clock to the 1930s and it would have rivaled the early 2000s.
“The 1930s had the highest number of fires,” said Bill Kuhn, ecologist with the U.S. Forest Service. “We’ve had the second-highest number this past decade.”
The size of fires has been steadily increasing over the past few decades, Kuhn said. In the 1930s, there were more reports of fires, though many weren’t large and the reporting wasn’t as accurate, he said.
Wildfires and fiery rhetoric during Wyden visit by Kaylee Tornay, July 29 2018
U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden used his Sunday visit to Medford to thank firefighters for their efforts battling current blazes, asking what Congress can do to help, and expressing concerns about the remainder of fire season.
Southern Oregon regional managers from the U.S. Forest Service, Oregon Department of Forestry and Bureau of Land Management briefed Wyden on firefighting efforts during a meeting in the Medford Interagency Office Sunday.