Abstract: Without action, the California forests will continue burning until there is nothing left for people to save. The threat of fires on the forests will continue to get worse as years go on. The wildland urban interface, the political and legal lens, and the environmental lens will all be explored in this article. These each contribute a cause to the California wildfires and have a potential solution. The best solution to the issues of wildfires in California is ecological forest restoration. The effect of ecological forest restoration is a positive implication on the forests of California. This solution will reduce the amount of fuel loads, combat effects of drought and climate, and it will restore ecosystem health.
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Summary: Natural disasters are a part of the world, and will continue to be unless people start to do something about it. All natural disasters harm people who live near them, and working together to overcome these disasters will help to bring a solution to the table. Harm can go from mentally to physically. Jacob Stern, a staff writer at The Atlantic, says that after a wildfire firefighters are 40% more likely to commit suicide and firefighters are heavily affected by PSTD (1). Physically, these wildfires are destroying the land where they reach. Alejandra Borunda, a former climate scientist writes in an article that a gigafire burned more than a million acres, all at a high severity (1). Disasters like floods and wildfires have been occurring for all of people's lives. Wildfires in California are being dealt with everyday on the west coast of the United States. With the damage that these fires cause, there has to be a solution put into place. Ecological Forest Restoration is being used to try and reduce the amount of fuel loads, combat the effects of drought and climate, and restore the ecosystem. This solution works to reduce wildfires and what is causing it, and then make the environment healthier.
In this article, the lens and stakeholders that will be explored is the political-legal lens, the environmental lens, and the WUI, the wildland urban interface. In this article, the research question will therefore be: What is the most effective way to address wildfires in California?. It was proven that using ecological forest restoration will reduce fuel loads, combat effects of drought and climate, and restore ecosystem health.
The WUI has a lot that can be done to it to reduce the amount of wildfires that are occuring. The houses are stacked so close together that if a fire sparks, it will travel quickly. In the political aspect, governments and organizations can work to protect the land from anything that could start a fire. Assembly Bills in the past have failed, however they tried to protect the land. Environmentally, the climate is a big factor when discussing the wildfires. The increase in climate contributes to the severity and frequency of these wildfires.
Ecological first restoration is the best and most effective way to address wildfires in California and all the damage that they are doing. Reducing fuel loads, combating effects of drought and climate, and restoring ecosystem health is why ecological forest restoration is the most promising solution to the wildfires in California.
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The Journal of Scholarship at WHS is a peer reviewed journal publishing academic works by emerging scholars at Weymouth Middle and High School.