Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Burning California - 123 Years of Wildfire

Earlier this month the Huffington Post used data from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection to map out more than a century of California wildfires. Capital Public Radio has now used the same data to create their own interactive map.

Both the Huffington Post map and Capital Public Radio's A History of California Wildfires map visualize the perimeters of all the wildfires in the state from 1878 to 2018. The Capital Public Radio map however includes a timeline which allows you to view the scope of all the state's wildfires for every individual year. This timeline allows you to see that in recent years the scale of wildfires in California appears to have significantly grown.

In the last 123 years the equivalent of 33.8% of California has burned in wildfires. The Huffington Post's This Is What More Than A Century Of Wildfires In California Looks Like includes an interactive map which visualizes the scale of damage caused to California by wildfires over the years.

The Huffington Post map shows how 40% of the total acreage burnt in the last 123 years has actually occurred in just the last 20 years. While the Huffington Post map doesn't include a timeline it does use the story map format to explore in a little more detail the size of the land that has been involved in California's wildfires. It also highlights the locations of California's three largest fires. All of three of these largest fires have taken place in just the first few years of this century.

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