Now you can monitor wildfires that are currently burning with Climate Central’s new interactive wildfires map. The flame icons represent wildfires currently active in the lower 48 states and Alaska. You can hover a given fire to see its name, and if you zoom in you’ll be able to see the outline of the area that’s burning — the so-called fire perimeter. If you click within the perimeter, a window pops up showing the fire’s size in acres, the amount by which the perimeter has grown or shrunk over the past 24 hours, the fraction of the fire that has been contained and other data. There’s also a link to an even more detailed report.Keep this tool handy in coming years—we're going to need it.
Not just to keep track of the various wildfires, which are increasingly occurring in record scope, as was the case this season, which saw many states (Colorado, New Mexico) battling larger-than-ever blazes, but even as a reminder that they're out there in the first place. Though a few of the bigger ones garnered national attention—the president himself went to Colorado Springs to survey the damage—most remain outside of our cultural digest.
And when they are noted, news outlets rarely mention why they're getting bigger and badder. Just 3% of the total mainstream coverage of wildfires this year noted that climate change played a role.