CIRS Blog about Rural California
The California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA) released earlier this month a unique report on the effects of climate change that the state is experiencing now. The report comes as a recent public opinion poll finds a record number of Californians want immediate state action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Many climate science reports project into the future what we may experience as greenhouse gases accumulate and heat up our planet. Such studies are critical to our understanding of climate change, but can make its impacts feel far and distant from our day-to-day.
But the most recent CalEPA report documents current climate change impacts that Californians are living with now. And the news has implications for all of us and especially for farmers and ranchers who are among the first to feel the effects of a changing climate.
Wildfires are increasing in intensity and frequency. Since 1950, annual acreage burned in wildfires statewide has been increasing. The state’s three largest fire years occurred in the last ten years.