Tree Deaths, Fires and the Drought

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The Scherpa fire raging north of Santa Barbara doubled in size overnight. It’s now 4,000 acres and growing. Pushed by strong winds, the fire is also being fueled by overgrown hillsides and canyons untouched by fire for nearly 60 years. With wildfire season upon us, forest service officials are concerned that Scherpa is just a preview of what’s to come this summer and fall.  One of their major concerns is dead trees, which feed wildfires. It’s estimated that last year nearly 30 million trees died in California because of the drought and a disease called Sudden Oak Death. What other impacts will we see?

Credits

Guest:
Yana Valachovic - University of California Cooperative Extension

Host:
Madeleine Brand

Producers:
Matt Holzman, Anna Scott, Jolie Myers, Christian Bordal, Sarah Sweeney