Climate Deniers Fiddle while the Earth Burns

The 2015 wildfire season is off to a blazing start.

And, even though you may not be in the immediate area, that doesn't mean that you're safe from the impact of the fires.

According to the Think Progress Blog, there were 45 large, active wildfires burning in Western states as of June 30th, and fires in Alaska – yes, Alaska – have already consumed more than one million acres of land this year alone.

The lingering drought and above-average temperatures have created the perfect environment for wildfires to start, spread, and intensify. But, the flames aren't the only reason that these fires are dangerous.

Even for those who live miles away from any ongoing wildfire, smoke pollution can cause serious health concerns. Fine particles within the smoke can cause an increase in asthma attacks and allergies, and can even make conditions like heart disease worse as far as 100 miles away from a large fire.

In addition, as fires burn and destroy forests and surface vegetation, they expose the soil to more erosion, which leads to more drought and a recipe for more wildfires. And, that soil erosion causes more soil and farm runoff into local water ways, and lowers water quality for humans and animals alike.

Although wildfires are a natural occurrence, the last century of pumping carbon in to the atmosphere has made them more likely, and harder to fight.

These massive blazes threaten our homes and our communities, and they pose a serious risk to human life.

We'll never stop all wildfires from happening, but we can stop creating the conditions that make them more likely. To help make the next wildfire seasons less dangerous, we need to do much more in the fight against climate change.

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