Published: Tue, August 07, 2018
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

The Latest On Major Fires Burning In Northern California

The Latest On Major Fires Burning In Northern California

The disaster declaration that Trump approved for California on Sunday makes available federal funding to state, local and tribal governments "on a cost-sharing basis for emergency work and the fix or replacement of facilities damaged by the wildfires and high winds in Shasta County".

"California wildfires are being magnified & made so much worse by the bad environmental laws which aren't allowing massive amount of readily available water to be properly utilized". Jerry Brown's administration is sending water from "the North" into the Pacific Ocean.

The fires have spread rapidly in recent days to burn 283,800 acres of land - an area nearly the size of Los Angeles.

The Mendocino Complex Fire, made up of two separate conflagrations that merged, has burned 283,800 acres (114,800 hectares) and was still growing, California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said.

Plumes of smoke towered over flame-engulfed mountains in northern California on Monday as firefighters grappled with what may be, by some measures, the second-largest wildfire in state history.

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The Carr Fire has now been raging for over three weeks, and is the sixth most destructive fire in California's history, destroying over 1,600 buildings.

CBN News' Heather Sells is in California covering the wildfires.

The Ranch and River fires, which span Lake and Mendocino counties, are burning about 14 miles apart and have destroyed 75 homes. News agencies have reported seven deaths so far in blazes across California. Add to this aircraft from across California, not just prop tankers, but DC-10s, C-130s and of course the famous Tanker 944 the 747 supertanker, and one begins to see the enormous financial cost of fighting the fire, not to mention the huge loss of property, and cost of rebuilding.

"California does NOT divert water to the ocean", he told CNN in an email.

About two-thirds of the worldwide reinforcements in Redding were sent to the Mendocino Complex Fires, U.S. Forest Service spokeswoman Kerry Greene said, and the remaining third stayed nearby to fight the Carr Fire.

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Hotter weather attributed to climate change is drying out vegetation, creating more intense fires that spread quickly from rural areas to city subdivisions, climate and fire experts say.

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has long argued for better forest management policies. Trump's references to diverting water to the oceans was "completely backwards", he said.

"Can be used for fires, farming and everything else", the president said.

Denham and his Central Valley colleagues are especially exercised about a plan announced last month by the California State Water Resources Control Board to step up water flows into the San Joaquin River, which eventually empties into the Pacific. "Fast Federal govt. approvals." - tweet Monday.

Trump appears to have conflated the state's real water controversy between farmers and environmentalists with the unrelated issue of firefighting.

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