The total acreage burned by wildfires so far this year now exceeds the total acreage burned in any year since records started being kept in 1960. As of September 13, some 8.7 million acres have burned –an area nearly twice the size of New Jersey. This exceeds the record set just last year of 8.5 million acres.
But much of the media seems unwilling to even mention the possibility that this record has anything whatsoever to do with global warming. As Climate Progress noted in August, the New York Times neglected to mention this possibility in its major wildfire story, even though the cover story of Science magazine the previous week was on research establishing the global warming-wildfire link.
The current story by the Associated Press, reprinted in the Times and the Washington Post today, offers this as the entire explanation:
Federal officials attributed the increase to two consecutive seasons of hot and dry weather that left forest and ranges parched and easily ignited by lightning.
It has been “hot and dry.” Thanks for clearing that up major media.