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California governor declares fire emergency

by Rachel Lynn Aldrich
Posted 10/28/19, 12:19 pm

Authorities have ordered nearly 200,000 people in Northern California to evacuate their homes due to wildfires. A huge fire in Sonoma County north of San Francisco has burned since Wednesday, covering 85 square miles, destroying 94 buildings, and threatening 80,000 other structures. California Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a statewide emergency on Sunday.

Who is being affected? About 90 percent of the evacuations are in Sonoma County. Pacific Gas and Electric notified more than 1.2 million customers that it may cut off their power for what could be the third time in a week and the fourth time this month to prevent more fires. In Southern California, a blaze broke out on the west side of Los Angeles early Monday, threatening thousands of homes.

Dig deeper: Read Julie Borg’s report in Beginnings after last year’s Camp Fire about the relationship between climate change and wildfires.

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Rachel Lynn Aldrich

Rachel is an assistant editor for WORLD Digital. Follow Rachel on Twitter @Rachel_Lynn_A.

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  •  Xion's picture
    Posted: Mon, 10/28/2019 11:34 pm

    Nearly all wild fires in California are caused by humans.  Some are arson.  Some are accidental.  Some are caused by power line failure.  Some are due to political policy.  None can be linked to climate.  Incidents of wild fire are actually lower now.  

  •  West Coast Gramma's picture
    West Coast Gramma
    Posted: Tue, 10/29/2019 12:52 am

    Xion, You are mistaken. While a "spark" may be traced to humans, the ravaging, uncontrollable, rapidly spreading fires we see in the last few years are due to weather. Extraordinarily low humidity, below normal rainfall for years on end, high temperatures stretching from summer through the end of October, and ferocious winds: these are conditions that spread fires rapidly. None of the above are caused by humans.