On Nov. 13, AP published a story saying California wildfires are intensified by global warming. The story is full of contradictions and unsubstantiated quotes from “fire” experts. In recent times, the population in California living in or on the verge of wildlands rose to about 1.4 million, hence the growing loss of life and cost of fire damage.

California is in a seven-year drought, but the amount of fuel in wildlands has paradoxically increased enormously. We’re talking native vegetation that has survived many droughts and fires. Clearing fire breaks around your property is frowned upon. An AP expert says they don’t work anyway. What a crock. Droughts open trees to killing insect infestations. Harvesting dead trees, wildland management, and access road building for firefighting are suppressed. Grazing used to remove grass and brush on CA public lands and National Forest. No more.

I lived 30 years in Southern California and experienced many Santa Ana winds. By their nature, they are strong enough to push you around, hot, dry and have nothing to do with global warming. They funnel from high desert through valleys on their way offshore.

This naturally heats and gives them extremely low humidity. Every year, along with North California Diablo winds, Santa Ana’s drive wildfires. Very often, arsonists start the fires and they burn in difficult access areas. The winds occur mostly in the fall.

Electric sparks from power lines interacting with blowing trees appear to be responsible for the devastation of Paradise.

Peter Jessup

Belton