Scientific American claims that 2015 was the “Biggest Year Ever for U.S. Wildfires” – with more than 10 million acres burned.
Their claim is flagrantly false. In 1937, more than twice that many acres burned.
Earlier in the 1930s, more than 50 million acres burned. Burn acreage in their claimed record year of 2015 was about 20% of the early 1930s. But their fraud is much worse than it seems. The current numbers include Alaska, whereas the 1930’s numbers most likely didn’t.
And to top it all off, they didn’t even get their 2015 number correct. It was less than 10 million acres, which includes Alaska.
2015 was actually one of the quietest fire years on record in the southwest and Rocky Mountains, because it was very wet. Most of the burn acreage was in Alaska.
This year, 63% of ALL wildfire acres burned in the U.S. burned in Alaska, much of it over remote tundra ecosystems.
The level of fraud on display from Scientific American is quite spectacular. But it gets even worse. When CO2 was 280 PPM, burn acreage in the conterminous US was 50 times higher than 2015.
It is time for Republicans in Congress to bring this scam to an end.