Breaking News: Wildfires

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Released: 1-Dec-2020 2:55 PM EST
Area burned by severe fire increased 8-fold in western US over past four decades
American Geophysical Union (AGU)

The number of wildfires and the amount of land they consume in the western U.S. has substantially increased since the 1980s, a trend often attributed to ongoing climate change.

Newswise: In fire-prone West, plants need their pollinators — and vice versa
Released: 25-Nov-2020 7:30 AM EST
In fire-prone West, plants need their pollinators — and vice versa
Washington University in St. Louis

2020 is the worst fire year on record in the United States. In the face of heartbreaking losses, effort and expense, scientists are still grappling with some of the most basic questions about how fire influences interactions between plants and animals in the natural world. A new study grounded in the northern Rockies explores the role of fire in the finely tuned dance between plants and their pollinators.

Newswise: 249589_web.jpg
Released: 23-Nov-2020 12:25 PM EST
Changes in fire activity are threatening more than 4,400 species globally
University of Melbourne

Changes in fire activity are putting at risk more than 4,400 species across the globe, says a new paper led by the University of Melbourne, involving 27 international researchers.

Newswise: Flying through wildfire smoke plumes could improve smoke forecasts
30-Oct-2020 2:55 PM EDT
Flying through wildfire smoke plumes could improve smoke forecasts
University of Washington

The biggest study yet of West Coast wildfire plumes shows how a smoke plume’s chemistry changes over time. Results suggest current models may not accurately predict the air quality downwind of a wildfire.

Released: 28-Oct-2020 1:05 PM EDT
Researchers find confusion over masks for wildfire, COVID-19 crises
Stanford School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences

To mask or not to mask - and which mask to use? With public health guidance about masks in the United States confused by political hedging, clarity around mask use is increasingly important, especially as the western U.S. battles the twin crises of wildfire smoke and COVID-19.

Released: 15-Oct-2020 11:30 AM EDT
Fuels, not fire weather, control carbon emissions in boreal forest, new study finds
Northern Arizona University

Northern Arizona University researcher Xanthe Walker is the lead author on research published this week that found that the amount of carbon stored in soils was the biggest predictor of how much carbon would combust and that soil moisture also was significant in predicting carbon release.

Released: 13-Oct-2020 12:30 PM EDT
Act now on wildfires, global climate change, human health, study says
Monash University

Immediate actions are needed to limit the greenhouse gas emissions that are driving climate change that helps fuel wildfires, a Monash University study says.

Newswise: Learning lessons from bushfires for koala survival
Released: 12-Oct-2020 8:20 AM EDT
Learning lessons from bushfires for koala survival
University of Adelaide

A University of Adelaide-led research project will study the clinical data of koalas injured in last summer’s devastating bushfires to give them the best possible chance of survival and recovery in future bushfires.

Newswise:Video Embedded argonne-develops-unprecedented-long-term-wildfire-prediction-model
VIDEO
Released: 7-Oct-2020 11:50 AM EDT
Argonne develops unprecedented long-term wildfire prediction model
Argonne National Laboratory

Wildfire indices and high-resolution climate models combine to produce a detailed historical analysis of wildfire events across the U.S. and suggest the potential for more severe and frequent fires in the latter half of the century.

Newswise: 243916_web.jpg
Released: 24-Sep-2020 12:20 PM EDT
Driven by climate, more frequent, severe wildfires in Cascade Range reshape forests
Portland State University

In recent years -- and 2020 is no exception -- parts of the Pacific Northwest that are typically too wet to burn are experiencing more frequent, severe and larger wildfires due to changes in climate.

Released: 22-Sep-2020 3:05 PM EDT
During Busy Wildfire Season (and Pandemic), S&T Focus on Sensors Burns Bright
Homeland Security's Science And Technology Directorate

DHS S&T's Smart City Internet of Things Innovation (SCITI) Labs program is bringing together government and private sector partners to identify technologies that can detect and alert emergency management, utilities, and citizens of a threatening wildfire.

Newswise: Experts Urge Those with Asthma to Take Extra Care as Wildfires Burn in Western U.S.
Released: 15-Sep-2020 1:10 PM EDT
Experts Urge Those with Asthma to Take Extra Care as Wildfires Burn in Western U.S.
American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI)

As wildfires continue to burn across western U.S. states, those with respiratory illnesses such as asthma need to be alert to the effects of smoke on their breathing.

Newswise: Study: Decreasing Wildfires Observed Over Central Africa
Released: 15-Sep-2020 12:05 PM EDT
Study: Decreasing Wildfires Observed Over Central Africa
University at Albany, State University of New York

A new observational study has revealed a decreasing burned area trend that could impact African ecosystems.

Newswise: Michigan Tech expert available: Mega wildfires release soil carbon into the atmosphere
Released: 14-Sep-2020 11:10 AM EDT
Michigan Tech expert available: Mega wildfires release soil carbon into the atmosphere
Michigan Technological University

Evan Kane, soil carbon expert, is available to speak about how increasingly severe wildfires are accelerating the climate change feedback loop.

Released: 4-Sep-2020 5:15 PM EDT
UCLA Fielding School of Public Health joins consortium to address environmental change and its health impacts
UCLA Fielding School of Public Health

The UCLA Fielding School of Public Health (FSPH) has joined the Planetary Health Alliance (PHA), a consortium of more than 200 universities, research institutes, and government agencies committed to understanding and addressing global environmental change and its health impacts.

Released: 4-Sep-2020 2:35 PM EDT
Wildfire Smoke May Increase Risk to COVID-19 Infection
University of Utah Health

Wildfires are becoming more common and severe due to climate change and warmer and drier conditions in the West. As wildfire season rages in the United States, people are also at increased risk for COVID-19 infection due to wildfire smoke.

Released: 2-Sep-2020 10:05 AM EDT
Fighting the health effects of climate change is the mission for new UCLA center
UCLA Fielding School of Public Health

In response to the escalating health emergency that is already inflicting substantial damage on people in Southern California and around the world, the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health has created the UCLA Center for Healthy Climate Solutions.

Released: 18-Aug-2020 12:20 PM EDT
The tropics are expanding, and climate change is the primary culprit
American Geophysical Union (AGU)

Earth's tropics are expanding poleward and that expansion is driven by human-caused changes to the ocean, according to new research.

Newswise: Low-Cost Home Air Quality Monitors Prove Useful for Wildfire Smoke
Released: 18-Aug-2020 7:00 AM EDT
Low-Cost Home Air Quality Monitors Prove Useful for Wildfire Smoke
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Published recently in the journal Sensors, a new study by Berkeley Lab air quality scientists tested four models of low-cost air quality monitors during actual wildfire pollution events and found that their readings of PM2.5 – or particulate matter under 2.5 microns, which has been linked to respiratory and cardiovascular issues – were consistently higher than the reference monitor used by the regulatory agencies; however, since each monitor had a relatively consistent response to the smoke, it is possible to use the readings to estimate true PM2.5 levels. Overall, the researchers concluded that the monitors can provide actionable information.

10-Jul-2020 9:00 AM EDT
Air Pollution From Wildfires Linked to Higher Death Rates in Patients with Kidney Failure
American Society of Nephrology (ASN)

• Exposure to higher amounts of fine particulate air pollution was associated with higher death rates among patients with kidney failure.

Newswise: Study finds less impact from wildfire smoke on climate
Released: 9-Jul-2020 4:55 PM EDT
Study finds less impact from wildfire smoke on climate
Los Alamos National Laboratory

New research revealed that tiny, sunlight-absorbing particles in wildfire smoke may have less impact on climate than widely hypothesized because reactions as the plume mixes with clean air reduce its absorbing power and climate-warming effect.

Newswise: Improving wildfire emissions model
Released: 6-Jul-2020 4:50 PM EDT
Improving wildfire emissions model
South Dakota State University

New satellite instrumentation will help researchers estimate fire emissions every half hour for the United States.

Newswise: Story Tips: Predicting fire risk, solid state stability check and images in a flash
Released: 6-Jul-2020 9:50 AM EDT
Story Tips: Predicting fire risk, solid state stability check and images in a flash
Oak Ridge National Laboratory

ORNL Story Tips: Predicting fire risk, solid state stability check and images in a flash

Newswise:Video Embedded know-the-risks-of-investing-in-forests
VIDEO
15-Jun-2020 1:20 PM EDT
Know the risks of investing in forests
University of Utah

Some governments are counting on planted forests as offsets for greenhouse gas emissions—a sort of climate investment. But as with any investment, it’s important to understand the risks. If a forest goes bust, researchers say, much of that stored carbon could go up in smoke. Forests can be best deployed in the fight against climate change with a proper understanding of the risks to that forest that climate change itself imposes.

Released: 16-Jun-2020 1:40 PM EDT
Wildfires cause bird songs to change
Oxford University Press

A new study in The Auk: Ornithological Advances, published by Oxford University Press, suggests that wildfires change the types of songs sung by birds living in nearby forests.

Newswise: UNH Researchers Find Wildfires Can Alter Arctic Watersheds for 50 Years
Released: 28-May-2020 12:30 PM EDT
UNH Researchers Find Wildfires Can Alter Arctic Watersheds for 50 Years
University of New Hampshire

Climate change has contributed to the increase in the number of wildfires in the Arctic where it can dramatically shift stream chemistry and potentially harm both ecosystems and humans. Researchers at the University of New Hampshire have found that some aftereffects, like decreased carbon and increased nitrogen, can last up to five decades and could have major implications on vital waterways.

Newswise: Study synthesizes what climate change means for Northwest wildfires
Released: 2-Apr-2020 1:50 PM EDT
Study synthesizes what climate change means for Northwest wildfires
University of Washington

Researchers synthesize how climate change will affect the risk of wildfires in Washington, Oregon, Idaho and western Montana. The study also suggests how managers and individual landowners in different ecosystems can best prepare.

Newswise: Assessing Forests From Afar
Released: 31-Mar-2020 3:10 PM EDT
Assessing Forests From Afar
University of Delaware

A new study led by the University of Delaware’s Pinki Mondal recommends that in addition to using large swaths of coarse satellite data to evaluate forests on a national scale, it is important for countries to prioritize areas such as national parks and wildlife refuges and use finer scale data in those protected areas to make sure that they are maintaining their health and are being reported on accurately.


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