Nearly every year, major wildfires devastate the environment and communities throughout California. These fires usually displace residents and local from their homes due to property destruction, poor air quality, extreme heat, and other concerns. Between 2014 and 2019, California saw and average of 1,223,831 acres burned by 7,874 fires. These catastrophes cost taxpayers over $590 million. In 2020, California saw 8,548 fires burning 4,204,379 acres of land.
Climate Change has wide ranging effects on the abundance and quality of freshwater throughout California. Many small rural water systems are unable to provide safe drinking water to the public and to schools. The use of nitrogen fertilizers and amount of manure pollutes groundwater, rivers, and watersheds. The extended drought has decreased the snowpack, river flows, and reservoir levels. The increased water temperatures bring lower oxygen levels, increased salinity, threatens fish species, and create a danger of algae blooms.
SEA LEVEL RISE
As the effects of Climate Change increases the global temperature, the polar ice caps will melt and increase sea levels across the globe. In California that means more saltwater into rivers and deltas decreasing the amount of water available for people who rely on them. Coastal flooding hazards become an increasing issue as saltwater infiltrates into coastal aquifers Beaches would normally migrate inland, but with infrastructure being unmovable, the sea will engulf many roads, homes, and population centers.
California is known as the Golden State in part to the Gold Rush of the 19th century, the immense fields of golden poppies that bloom in the spring, and the golden hills and landscapes during the summer months. However, California has been in a declared drought state for nearly two decades. Climate science has increasingly focused on the establishing climate fingerprints in diverse meteorological phenomena around the world from heat waves, coastal erosion from sea level rise, storms and floods, increased frequency and severity of flooding, and the level of torrential rain and severe drought.