Fires in California

California’s landscape needs to burn.

Building more infrastructure means more suppression, meaning hotter and more destructive fires. It’s estimated 4.4 million acres per year burned before 1800, and 2020’s 4.5 million acres was seen as some sort of apocalypse. The orange skies were supposedly the first sign of some future climate-dystopia, it seems events like that historically would have been the norm for a California summer.

I don’t see a good solution here other than better management with controlled burns, as was done by Indigenous Californians. Building less infrastructure in high-risk areas (which is pretty much everywhere) might also be good to consider, as would thinking about how to live and build in such a way where a fire sweeping though every so often would not be the end of the world. It implies the need for a new architecture and culture built around fires.