Endangered Species Act Help Cause California Fires

Ralph Hostetter shows how the fuel behind the California wildfires came from environmental regulation to protect critters such as frogs and rats:

The Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA) has had unintended consequences that have proved a nightmare for many Americans who have had their properties seized, faced exorbitant fines, and in some cases given jail time, all in the name of protecting rodents and reptiles, principally.

We need only look to the wildfires raging in California at the present time as an example.

No doubt some of the homes still going up in flames are lost as a result of protection for an endangered species.

ESA regulations prevented homeowners from clearing highly flammable brush from around their homes in San Bernadino and San Diego counties. The very brush that brought the flames that destroyed their homes was the protected habitat of an endangered species, the kangaroo rat. . . . .

UPDATE: I don't think that there was anything "new" here, but I thought that this newspaper editorial put things together very well:

Remember when Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid shamelessly told reporters the Southern California wildfires were the result of man-made global warming? Not to be outscreeched, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi exploited the tragedy by forming a select committee with the stated goal of establishing a link between "changing climate and the frequency and intensity of wildfires." Nothing like reaching a conclusion, then gathering "the facts" to support it.

But the Nobel-winning U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says the 1 F increase in the average Southern California temperature since 1900 was accompanied by an increase in precipitation. The U.S. Forest Service and National Climatic Data Center, not exactly global-warming skeptics, say changes in the frequency and intensity of the wildfires defy explanation. Tom Wordell of the National Interagency Fire Center in Idaho said it most succinctly: "That's a fire-prone environment regardless of whether we are in a climate-change scenario."

It turns out the wildfires had an anthropic element: Police say one was touched off by a kid playing with matches and several others were sparked by arsonists. Nice try on that global-warming twaddle, though.

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