Tuesday, October 23, 2007

California Burning

All across Southern California, firefighters are battling fatigue and immense wildfires that are devouring everything in their path. Hundreds of thousands of people have been forced to evacuate their homes, and more than 1,000 homes have gone up in smoke. Thousands more are being asked to leave their homes, which are threatened by fires.

One of the more surreal and tragic moments came when a local reporter was describing one such fire - his own home going up in flames.

The California National Guard has been activated to fight the fires, and the federal government has declared a state of emergency and may send assistance as well.

Fire crews from all over the West are heading to California to assist in fighting the fires and spelling those who have been fighting the fires nonstop since they erupted.

The fires are going to get a whole lot worse as the temperatures continue to rise and the winds whip the flames into a frenzied mass that devours everything in its path.

See here for far more.

My thoughts and prayers go out to all those affected.

This is a great tool for tracking the fires that are ravaging all over Southern California. Hot Air plays compare and contrast between the situation in California and the situation in Louisiana following Hurricane Katrina. I think that's a bit of an unfair comparison, although the main thrust is the kind of leadership and direction of state and local officials in California and the lack thereof in Louisiana.

It didn't take long for folks to start linking the wildfires in California (an annual occurrence) with global warming. The most prominent global warming purveyor? Sen. Harry Reid, Democrat, Nevada. Hypocrite. Waffler.
“One reason why we have the fires in California is global warming,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) told reporters Tuesday, stressing the need to pass the Democrats’ comprehensive energy package.

Moments later, when asked by a reporter if he really believed global warming caused the fires, he appeared to back away from his comments, saying there are many factors that contributed to the disaster.
Reid opposes the construction of the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository in his state, which would enable nuclear power plants to safely store nuclear waste in a safe location and enable new power plants to come on line that would not generate the greenhouse gases that Reid refers to.

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