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From Drought To Ash

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The forest fires burn through out California.

The forest fires burn through out California.

Jeff Head

Jeff Head

The forest fires burn through out California.

Natalie Burr, Ranger Review Reporter

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Starting on October 8, 2017, California has had many devastating fires that have destroyed a lot of land and even killed many people. Sadly, these fires have claimed 43 lives and more than a dozen are still missing. The fires have burned 210,244 acres and have cost at least $3 billion dollars.  It started with a severe drought and ended with ash covering the ground.

 

The fires have also affected many students a Lewis-Palmer High School.Many students have lived in California and left behind friends and family who have been victims of the fires. “Their home was burnt down and they are staying in hotels,”  said Hannah Johnson, a freshman at Lewis-Palmer High School, speaking of her family living in California. “They don’t have plans and they will stay in hotels until they eventually find a new home.”

 

Unfortunately, 8,900 buildings have been destroyed and 70% of those buildings were homes. Many people, like Hannah Johnson’s family, are in the same situation. They will live in hotels or in other family member’s homes until they eventually find a new home.

 

Currently, 43 people have died, 185 people are hospitalized and there are still dozens of people still missing, making the week of October 8, 2017 the most deadly week of fires in the history of Californian wildfires. These wildfires, all together, have made the largest loss of life in the United States since the Cloquet Fire in 1918 that killed 453 people.

 

This wildfire has been a disaster and it has affected both human and the ecosystem. The fires burned 210,244 acres including all of the wildlife. “It’s just really pretty there and it’s all going to be ruined. But I guess wildfires are a way of rebuilding the forest.” said Delaney Champion grade 9. On the positive note there might be some good that comes out of these tragic wildfires.

 

Although all 10 fires have been contained, they have another problem: toxic ash. People don’t know how much or if it will be a problem, it all depends on how hot the fire was. The ash will seep into the soil and it could flow into the aquatic ecosystems like the San Francisco Bay. This could have a harmful effect on the ecosystem.

 

These fires have been a problem for a long time due to California’s dry climate. “I’m really not surprised” said Justen Lee 9. “They have been really continual and we don’t do much about them,” said Johnson.

 

Johnson thinks we don’t do enough for our community when something tragic happens. “I feel we should do a little bit more than just throw money at it. I feel we should something to help our community.” said Johnson, 9. “We could help rebuild where it was burned down, where the fire took place,” she suggests.

 

The fires have affected a lot of people and destroyed many buildings. Although, the fires have have destroyed many acres of land, forest fires rejuvenate the forest. It may take a hundred years but the forest will grow back and new life will come.

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