Wildfires Spread Through California And Arizona As Drought Continues

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Harry Wilmerding Contributor
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Wildfires in Arizona and California continued to spread Sunday, burning over 1,500 acres of land and causing multiple evacuations, CNN reported. 

Intense heat and dry weather have prompted growing wildfires in Arizona and California, burning hundreds of thousands of acres so far this year, according to CNN. The growing heat and lack of rain have placed over 48 million people in the Western U.S under a heat advisory watch.

A wildfire rapidly burned over 1,200 acres Sunday, causing the Arizona State Forestry to call for evacuations on Sunday, local affiliate CBS 5 reported. (RELATED: Residents Forced to Evacuate As Wildfire Rips Through Over 600 Acres of State Forest)

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey called for a special legislative session last Thursday to address the growing wildfires, which have burned over 163,000 acres this year, according to a transcript of his press conference.  

The Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management warned of rising temperatures and dry weather having “the potential to produce large wildland fire incidents across Arizona,” in a statement released Saturday.

The department also acknowledged approaching thunderstorms which would cause “rapid fuel ignition and fire spread with very erratic and extreme fire behavior.” 

California saw a spike in wildfires on Sunday, as more than 400 acres were burned in the Sand Bernardino County, according to Cal Fire.

California has seen nearly twice the acreage burned this year than last year, Last year, the state experienced 6,353 fires that burned 2,025 acres, while this year, the state has witnessed 2,733 fires burning 12,540 acres.

In 2021, the U.S. has seen 833,479 acres burned in 26,633 fires compared to last year’s figure of 658,069 acres burned in 20,731 fires. 

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