Perspectives: West Coast Wildfires and Climate Change

Headline Roundup September 10th, 2020

After weeks of heatwaves with record-breaking temperatures, wildfires have popped all along the west coast of the U.S. According to the National Weather Service, the heat exacerbated by a high-pressure system and a weak sea breeze caused a "kiln-like effect." The Sierra Nevada fire over the weekend burned a record 2.2 million acres, likely amplified by dry forests and high temperatures. Some studies suggest that these conditions are a result of climate change.

Media Matters reported that only 4% of broadcast news wildfire coverage during the month of August mentioned climate change. Some voices from the left drew a direct connection between the fires and climate change. Coverage from several right-rated outlets framed the story as Democrats taking the fires as an opportunity to push their environmental agenda.

Perspectives: West Coast Wildfires and Climate Change

From the Right
309

Democrats on Thursday unveiled a new agenda for climate change amid a backdrop of raging wildfires burning on the West Coast.

The plan also includes a bicameral resolution on racial injustice and economic recovery.

At least 79 members of Congress, including Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Ma., and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, back the THRIVE agenda, which stands for “Transform, Heal, and Renew by Investing in a Vibrant Economy.”

“Our country is facing crises that are fatefully intertwined: tens of millions of people are unemployed, the COVID-19...

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From the Center
309

The planet is showing signs it’s in peril. In recent weeks, the world has seen ferocious wildfires in the U.S. West, torrential rains in Africa, weirdly warm temperatures on the surface of tropical oceans, and record heat waves from California to the Siberian Arctic.

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From the Left
309
ANALYSIS

Over the long Labor Day weekend, an explosive fire in the Sierra Nevada and record-shattering heat accelerated the climate crisis unfolding in California. The fires this season have already burned more acres than during any other year on record — and there are still several months left in the fire season.

The wildfire media coverage over the three-day weekend and into Tuesday included horrifying images, footage, and accounts from those on the ground, and awestruck reporters onsite and in studios casting around for language that properly conveys the scope...

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