The weather, currently.
A passing cold front continues to trigger scattered thunderstorms overnight and into the very early morning hours of Tuesday. Some areas will get the first significant rainfall in a while. Conditions will be calmer by breakfast time with just isolated rain showers and possible storms, all winding down by late morning. We will see variable skies for the remainder of the early afternoon. That means peeks of sun and then clouds, with a high of 26°C that feels like 30°C. The UV index will be 7 or high and you will notice a NW breeze starting to pick up behind the front 20-30km+/h.
Tuesday night: scattered clouds with a low of 16°C.
What you need to know, currently.
Firefighters are still attempting to save our nation’s beloved sequoia trees, as the Washburn wildfire in Yosemite National Park rages on.
The national park has served as a haven for the largest grove of giant sequoias since its opening in 1890, but from last Friday to this Monday, the fire — which was first reported on July 7th — swelled from 250 to over 2,000 acres.
At one point, this beloved tree species was thought to be fire resistant. But due to climate change, that is no longer the case.
Mark Cochrane, a wildfire and climate change expert and environmental science professor at the University of Maryland, says that the wildfires, themselves, are not unusual per se — the sequoias have scars and burn marks indicating fire damage from past centuries.
He says, what is unusual, however, is that due to modern forest management, wildfires have been steered away from the park. Forest management practices combined with climate change, mean that we will see more severe fires and the potential for the once fire-resistant trees to become additional fuel for the flames.
“When we’re under these very severe conditions like we have right now, it becomes an extreme fire that even those very large trees can be vulnerable to, since the flames rise so far up,” Cochrane told Currently.
In the last two years alone, climate change-fueled fires have destroyed one fifth of the remaining sequoias on the western part of the Sierra Nevada mountain range. Those dead trees become fuel for the fire, perpetuating a deadly cycle.
Read the full story on our website: Wildfire Threatens Yosemite’s Iconic Sequoia Trees.