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Canadian Fires Already Causing Problems in US
Canadian Fires Already
Causing Problems in US

Canadian Fires Already Causing Problems in US

Four states had air-quality alerts on Monday

(Newser) - Air-quality alerts from wildfires in Canada were in effect over four US states Monday afternoon, reports NBC News . Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota were affected, with conditions ranging from "moderate" to "unhealthy" under the air quality index established by the Environmental Protection Agency.

Canada Braces for 'Explosive Wildfire Season'

Country has just had its warmest winter on record

(Newser) - Last year was Canada's worst wildfire season on record by a long way—and authorities are warning that this year could be even worse. Government officials say an unusually warm winter, drought conditions, and dry, hot weather to come could cause an "explosive" wildfire season, the BBC reports....

One Nation Claims Dozens of World's Most-Polluted Cities

India isn't breathing easy, per new air-quality report, which notes only 10 nations get WHO's thumbs-up

(Newser) - If your city's air pollution has you reaching for the N95, you're not alone. Per a new report from Swiss tech company IQAir, out of 134 nations and regions surveyed, only 10 of them meet an international air-quality standard set forth by the World Health Organization, reports CNN...

The New Luxury Perk in Fancy Homes: Clean Air
The Rich Breathe Better
Air Than Most—Literally

The Rich Breathe Better Air Than Most—Literally

Souped up filtration is becoming the norm for those who can afford it, reports 'New Republic'

(Newser) - It's a general truth that air pollution from factories and highways affects the poor more than the rich because of where people are able to live. But wildfire smoke? You might think, as one journalist put it, that it's more "egalitarian" because it affects everyone. Not so...

In Texas' Biggest Wildfire, Utility Issues a Mea Culpa

Xcel Energy says its facilities 'appear to have been involved' in starting the Smokehouse Creek Fire

(Newser) - The utility provider Xcel Energy said Thursday that its facilities appeared to have played a role in igniting a massive wildfire in the Texas Panhandle that grew to the largest blaze in state history. Texas officials have said they're still investigating the cause of the fire that has burned...

The Force of the Texas Wildfire, in 5 Stats

Blaze, now the largest in Texas history, remains 3% contained

(Newser) - It took just four days for a spark to become the largest wildfire ever seen in Texas. The Smokehouse Creek Fire that erupted Monday had spread to roughly 1.1 million acres on Thursday, topping the 2006 East Amarillo Complex Fire, which burned 907,245 acres, per the Houston Chronicle...

Wildfire Emergency Declared in 60 Texas Counties
Texas Fire 'Looks
Like Armageddon'

Texas Fire 'Looks Like Armageddon'

Wildfire that started Monday is already 5th-largest in state history

(Newser) - With multiple fires raging in the Texas Panhandle, Gov. Greg Abbott has declared a state of emergency in 60 counties. Multiple communities have been evacuated and mandatory evacuation orders are in place in Moore and Potter counties, reports the Amarillo Globe-News . In Hemphill County, the sheriff's office issued a...

Utility to Pay $80M Over 2017 California Wildfire

Under the terms, Southern California Edison does not accept blame

(Newser) - Southern California Edison has agreed to pay $80 million in connection with a huge 2017 wildfire that destroyed more than 1,000 homes and other structures. Federal prosecutors said Monday that the deal, in which the utility does not admit fault or wrongdoing, will settle claims on behalf of the...

Fatal Gender Reveal Stunt Leads to Jail Time

California's Refugio Jimenez Jr. cops to involuntary manslaughter after firefighter died in El Dorado Fire

(Newser) - A man whose family's gender reveal photo shoot sparked a Southern California wildfire that killed a firefighter in 2020 has pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter. The El Dorado Fire erupted on Sept. 5, 2020, when Refugio Jimenez Jr., Angelina Jimenez, and their young children staged a photo shoot for...

After Years of Research, Expert Advice: Burn California's Forests

Burning, thinning, or a combination of both found to make trees more resilient to wildfire, drought

(Newser) - The findings of a 20-year study on the health of California forests will come as no surprise to Native Americans, whose ancestors traditionally managed land through controlled fires . The study out of the University of California-Berkeley confirms that prescribed burning, the use of controlled fire to clear debris; restoration thinning,...

Town Decimated by Fire Has New Obstacle to Rebuild

Homeowners in California town of Paradise find home insurance premiums have skyrocketed

(Newser) - The soaring cost of home insurance has consumed the California town of Paradise, residents and officials say, just after the five-year anniversary of the Nov. 8, 2018, Camp Fire, the deadliest wildfire in California history. Residents have received annual premiums that are near or exceed $10,000—leaving many to...

California's Famous Forests Are in Jeopardy

Management practices, more intense fires, a warming climate among the factors

(Newser) - On a steep mountainside where walls of flames torched the forest on their way toward Lake Tahoe in 2021, blackened trees stand in silhouette against a gray sky. "If you can find a live tree, point to it," Hugh Safford, an environmental science and policy researcher at the...

Unshared Wildfire Plan in Hawaii Only Raises Questions

Regulators weren't shown document until last week

(Newser) - Hawaiian Electric's chief executive reassured a congressional committee last week that the utility has a major wildfire mitigation plan in place, one that was completed in January after four years of development. Shelee Kimura's testimony, and the document, have raised a series of questions from regulators, including, "...

Lahaina to Hawaii Governor: We're Not Ready to Reopen

Residents deliver petition asking to delay new tourism, but it's a tricky economic situation

(Newser) - Residents from fire-stricken Lahaina on Tuesday delivered a petition asking Hawaii Gov. Josh Green to delay plans to reopen a portion of West Maui to tourism starting this weekend, saying the grieving community is not ready to welcome back visitors. The petition signed by 3,517 people from West Maui...

Woman Who Ran Through Burning Maui Field Dies

Laurie Allen, who escaped Lahaina's wildfire 7 weeks ago, succumbed to her injuries Friday

(Newser) - A woman who escaped Hawaii's Lahaina wildfire by running through a flaming field has died after spending more than seven weeks in a hospital burn unit. Laurie Allen died Friday at Straub Medical Center in Honolulu, according to a GoFundMe page set up for her and her husband, Perry...

Symbol of Hope Emerges in Lahaina
Symbol of Hope
Emerges in Lahaina

Symbol of Hope Emerges in Lahaina

Hawaiian town's scorched banyan tree sprouts new leaves after intensive treatment

(Newser) - Among a sea of brown, black, and gray, a hint of green in the scorched Maui town of Lahaina is cause for celebration. Locals have spotted new growth on the 150-year-old banyan tree that serves as a landmark at the center of the town largely destroyed in the Aug. 8...

After DNA Tests, Maui Death Toll Drops to 97

People died huddled together, coroner says

(Newser) - Authorities in Hawaii have adjusted the number of deaths from the deadly Maui wildfire down to at least 97 people. Officials previously said they believed at least 115 people had died in the fire, but further testing showed they had multiple DNA samples from some of the victims. The number...

Canada's Wildfire Season Has Obliterated Previous Records

An area the size of Wisconsin has burned, and more than 1K fires are still active

(Newser) - This year has been by far the worst on record for wildfires in Canada, with an area the size of Wisconsin burned, and the fire season isn't over yet. The fires have burned some 41 million acres, more than double the record of 17.5 million acres set in...

Oprah, the Rock: 'This Is What You Can Do' to Help Maui

Stars announce fund to help displaced residents

(Newser) - Oprah Winfrey and Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson have committed $10 million to make direct payments to people on Maui who are unable to return to their homes because of the wildfires, through a new fund they announced this week. The People's Fund of Maui will give $1,200...

NWS Issues 'Red Flag Warning' for All of Hawaii

Weather agency says wind gusts, low humidity have upped risk of rapid-spreading fires on islands

(Newser) - The National Weather Service on Wednesday warned that gusty winds and low humidity have increased the risk that fires could spread rapidly in the western parts of each Hawaiian island, three weeks after a deadly blaze tore through a coastal Maui town during a similar alert. But the agency said...

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