Fire safety has suddenly become far more politically fraught and expensive. Here, firefighters respond to 2017 Ponderosa Fire. Photo courtesy of Cal Fire. (Photo: CalFire, via CALmatters)
Don’t be fooled by the precipitation, the snowpack, the wildflowers. When winter ends, it’s unlikely that California’s iconic landscape will sustain the moisture to withstand the 100-degree summer and fall. California has yet to recover from the 5-year drought that began in 2012. For four years, record wildfires have ravaged the state, including the Tubbs Fire in Napa and Sonoma in 2017 and the Camp Fire last year that wiped out the town of Paradise in Butte County.
Localized flooding on the American River near Folsom Dam. (Photo: David Greitzer
Most Californians are – finally – out of the drought, but the record-setting rains have not washed away emergency conditions for all residents. Gov. Jerry Brown’s April 7 executive order lifted the drought state of emergency for 54 of California’s 58 counties.