California after the Warming

Sunrise this morning was a sullen red meatball in a mezzotint sky darkened by the smoke from multiple fires — over 30,000 acres– burning in the chapparal southeast and northeast of silicon Valley. Yesterday’s daytime sky was a sullen photochemical orange worthy of Los Angeles in the early ’60s, but this is the equal of the worst I have seen in Shanghai, or Delhi on a hot August day, or Malaysia during the fires a few years back.

It is always hard to tie specific events to larger trends, but it would be surprising if we do not one day recognize that the western fires of the last few years were not linked to global climate change. And if that surmise is correct, we had all better get used to orange skies, sullen sunrises, and a land constantly on fire.