California wildfires reversed years of climate change progress in 2020 alone, study says
Logan Powell, with a Cal Fire crew from the Amador-El Dorado unit, keeps an eye on hot spots as the Mosquito Fire makes its way up a hill south of Wortons Market in Foresthill on Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2022. - Hector Amezcua/The Sacramento Bee/TNS

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California’s record-setting wildfires of 2020 destroyed 4.2 million acres of forest — and erased years of progress the state made on battling climate change. A study by researchers at UCLA and the University of Chicago says the 2020 wildfires released nearly 140 million tons of carbon dioxide into the air. That was nearly as much greenhouse gas emissions as all the passenger vehicles in California generate in a typical year. Put another way: Between 2003 and 2019, through a variety of measures, California managed to reduce annual carbon emissions by 71 million tons. The 20...