Starting August 15th there were thousands of lighting strikes and by August 22nd within 1 week there had been almost a million acres of land burned in the California. The bobcat fires to this day continue to grow in the Angeles National Forest which is causing people to evacuate and threatening foothill communities. Droughts are one the main reasons behind these fires. It is no secret that the State of California has experienced droughts as far back as 1841. The years of droughts in California are 1841, 1864, 1924, 1928–1935, 1947–1950, 1959–1960, 1976–1977, 1986–1992, 2006–2010, and 2011–2020. Right now 13,273,000 people have been effected by the drought at 36% of the states population and an additional 15% are in abnormally dry areas at 5,750,000 totaling out to just about 51% of the total population.

Fires in California have changed the color of the sky.

By September 8th there were more than 2 million acres of land burned. Even if the conditions are right for a wildfire, you still need something or someone to ignite it. Sometimes the trigger is nature, like the unusual lightning strikes that set off the LNU Lightning Complex fires in August, but more often than not humans are responsible, said Nina S. Oakley, a research scientist at the Center for Western Weather and Water Extremes at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego [1]. On top of that, the water pipelines may be insufficient as they have not had any major upgrades since 1979. The water resources have to support 35 million people and 5.68 million acres of land.

California has a water system with a series of pumps that pump water North to South. The issues are state regulations with time of year you can pump which is not to effect migrating fish and also the fact that millions of gallons of water end up in the Pacific Ocean. In 2015, 9,400,000 acre feet of water was flowing in the Sacramento–San Joaquin River Delta, but only 1,900,000 acre feet was actually even picked up by the water distribution center. Acre feet of water equals about 326,000 gallons of water.

Oregon and Nevada are both both neighboring states highly effected by the drought. Oregon is also dealing with fires as well.

Sources:

1. https://www.nytimes.com/article/why-does-california-have-wildfires.html

2. https://www.drought.gov/drought/states/california

3. https://www.watereducation.org/photo-gallery/california-water-101

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