EDITOR: Every year new records are broken relative to climate change and this year is no exception. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration just stated that this summer is the hottest on record. A few short weeks ago hurricane Ida not only devastated Louisiana but caused record flooding in the northeast. There were at least 60 deaths across eight states from this single storm. All-time heat records were set during June in the Pacific Northwest where Portland, Oregon averaged 112 degrees over three days!
The West has also been experiencing the largest and most intense drought in the past 100 years. These conditions contributed to a near doubling of the acres burned during the first two-thirds of 2021 (4 million acres) compared to the same timeframe last year. In our area, the Boundary Waters Canoe Area closed for the first time in 45 years, and several areas at Isle Royale National Park were also closed in response to fires.