Another fire broke out and I spent the better part of the evening watching its progress on TV. The initial prognosis was not that good. The experts were expecting winds gusting to 50 miles an hour. And I was all the more alarmed because Brother Dan’s house was in an evacuation warning zone. Thankfully, this morning the fire appears under control although the temperature is again anticipated to be high and those high winds called "sun downers" may appear again in the evening. This morning Brother Dan sent an email reading in part:
Fire in the hills above SB. Nick called,Karen (muminlaw2),Pat called, we had quite day. The fire started around 130pm and keep on through the night, still going on this morning. From the house across the street we saw fire balls hailing down, a good mile away from any residence. So far no one has been hurt. Our old hike ground, LA Jesusita, was where the fire took place. Foothill was shut down today with fire trucks going up and back.
They are calling the fire the Jesusita Fire since it broke out near the trail Dan mentions where he occasionally takes his exercise.
That’s four significant fires now since the summer of 2007. First, the Zaca Fire, one of the longest burning in CA history, that rained down ash on the city for two months. Then at the beginning of last summer, the Gap Fire, that hovered in the hills above where Carol and I lived and kept knocking out the power for over a week. Then the horrible Tea Fire destroying many homes in the Monticeto Hills. And now this, the Jesusita Fire, small by comparison to the others, but still at moments within a half a mile of heavily housed areas.
Experts say fires have increased globally in frequency and ferocity over the last thirty years. They think global warming may be at the heart of it; and as it turns out, fires contribute to global warming, a factor, according to a Professor at UCSB, that has not been figured into models predicting the impact of global warming.