in 2007, the largest fire ever recorded in the Arctic swept across the Alaskan Northern Slope region, releasing an estimated 2.1 teragrams (2.3 million tons) of carbon into the atmosphere. Researchers estimate that the release of carbon was equivalent to a year’s worth of carbon storage for the entire Arctic tundra biome. Climate warming in the Arctic may lead to a greater frequency of such large fires, putting permafrost at risk of thawing and releasing more CO2.
Following up on my Saturday coverage of the Arizona wildfires, which at that time were approaching New Mexico, had burned down 30 homes, and had caused 10,000 to evacuate, here’s more on the fires….
Wildfires sparked in part by exceptionally severe drought in Arizona (and plenty of other U.S. states) as well as extreme heat are out of control, have already taken out 31 homes, 24 outbuildings, and a truck. 30,000 people have also been forced to evacuate so far.
Researchers Overpeck and Udall cite a litany of troubling trends to support their prediction: “soaring temperatures, declining late-season snow pack, northward-shifted winter storm tracks, increasing precipitation intensity (note: not total rainfall), the worst drought since measurements began, steep declines in Colorado River reservoir storage, widespread vegetation mortality, and sharp increases in the frequency of large wildfires.”
[social_buttons] We’ve all heard the legend of Johnny Appleseed, the legendary apple tree planter of the United States. He walked across the country with his walking stick, and a bucket … [Read full article]