Forestry Professor: Wildfires Have Nothing to Do with Global Warming

I know, I know; he’s not a climate scientist. But he does know a thing or two about forests and wildfires. David B. South is a forestry professor who teaches at Auburn University. I’m sure he also secretly works with the Koch brothers who secretly write and sign his paychecks.

According to him, the scientific truth about wildfires isn’t nearly as exciting as how the politicians and the media make it out to be. Remember what California Governor Jerry Brown lamented recently regarding the wildfires that blazed his state? Breitbart reported:

On Thursday, Governor Jerry Brown asserted that it is settled that climate change is a factor in the wildfires now devastating parts of San Diego County. Brown’s comments come at the same time that the Escondido Polilce Department reported that two suspects, an adult and a juvenile, have been arrested in connection with intentionally starting the fire.

According to a story in the U-T San Diego, the governor opined, “Despite what you may hear in Washington, climate change is a factor… This is not about theory. It’s not about politics. This is about fires on the ground, people’s homes.”

But according to Professor South, the inconvenient truth is that wildfires have nothing to do with tea party-induced global warming. Here’s the Daily Caller:

“Policy makers who halt active forest management and kill ‘green’ harvesting jobs in favor of a ‘hands-off’ approach contribute to the buildup of fuels in the forest,” South told the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee on Tuesday.

“This eventually increases the risk of catastrophic wildfires,” South said. “To attribute this human-caused increase in fire risk to carbon dioxide emissions is simply unscientific.”

Government wildfire data shows that the scale of U.S. wildfires has decreased dramatically since 1930, when wildfires burned more than four times the amount of acreage burned in 2012. In 1930, wildfires consumed more than 50 million acres of land, but in 2012 wildfires only burnt up 9.2 million acres.

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), carbon dioxide concentrations were much lower in the 1940s (only 310 parts per million by volume), meaning global temperatures were cooler while wildfires were much more prevalent than today.

“These data suggest that extremely large megafires were 4-times more common before 1940,” South said, adding that “we cannot reasonably say that anthropogenic global warming causes extremely large wildfires.”

“However, in today’s world of climate alarmism, where accuracy doesn’t matter, I am not at all surprised to see many journalists spreading the idea that carbon emissions cause large wildfires,” South said.

As you can see, there’s nothing particularly spectacular about what he’s saying. And that’s why the politicians and media will ignore him.