Wildfire Size Doesn’t Matter
To Plan Ahead for Future Disasters, We Need to Prioritize Severity, Community Impact, and Environmental Damage
The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, or Cal Fire, maintains a list of the “Top 20 Largest California Wildfires.” Lately, as ever more massive blazes erupt, it’s become the norm for the agency to have to update the list each year. All but two of the fires on the current list occurred within the past 20 years; the top five all happened within the past five. That same pattern repeats in other states across the West, as headlines year after year announce wildfire size records dashed.
At the same …