California's Long Drought Has Killed 100 Million Trees

The extensive drought in California has caused 100 million trees to die, according to the U.S. Forest Service's latest survey. The 62 million trees that died just this year have brought the total to 102 million tree causalities in a 6 year span. The over 5 year drought is to blame, during a drought the chance of tree death is increased to 100%. This problem is not going away, millions of more trees are predicted to die in the coming months and years. This drought has affected 7.7 acres of forests, risking the survival of the regions ecology.

The build up of dead trees is the perfect fuel for large and unpredicted forest fires. "These dead and dying trees continue to elevate the risk of wildfire, implicate our efforts to respond safely and effectively to fires when they do occur, and pose a host of threats to life and property across California," stated U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, Tom Vilsack. This leads to California having longer and hotter seasons of wildfires. USFS scientists are saying that the are expect the amount tree deaths due to wildfires to continue to increase in 2017.

The constant need to fight wildfires and take other safety measures has really made a dent in the USFS budget. California has put $43 million towards the drought and wildfire restoration, that's using up 56% of the USFS budget for fire management in 2016 alone. Officials are predicting for the percentage to rise to an absurd 67% in 2025. The large loss of budget is making the proper removal of dead trees very difficult to accomplish.

In 2015 Brown (California Gov.) wrote a letter to Vilsack stating "California is facing the worst epidemic of tree mortality in its modern history. A crisis of this magnitude demands action on all fronts."

Summing up the great tragedy to the California ecosystem. A problem that needs help on all fronts. To save the wildlife, trees and the well being of citizens.

Made with Adobe Slate

Make your words and images move.

Get Slate

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.