The question "Is climate change to blame?" echos in everyday conversations following many extreme weather-related events. This summer has been no exception. But as Katharine Jacobs notes in this month's profile, the question is really not whether climate change "caused" a particular extreme event, but rather, “to what degree did the intensity or frequency of this specific event change because the climate has changed? How likely is it that a particular event could have occurred in the absence of climate change?" When it comes to wildfires, attribution is exceedingly difficult due to the fact that each wildfire is influenced by a wide array of factors that may or may not be influenced by climate change. In terms of a specific wildfire, the common refrain, "It's complicated!" may have to be a sufficient answer to the question for now.

Education Spotlights

Intermediate Wildland Fire Behavior, Source: MetEd

Intermediate Wildland Fire Behavior

This course is required of those planning to work as one of the Single Resource Bosses or a Fire Effects Monitor on wildfires and prescribed fires. It is also one of MetEd's most popular modules.

Undergraduate, Graduate/professional