Nine people are presumed dead in the crash of a helicopter fighting wildfire in Northern California.
"California has entered another drought. But depending on whom you ask, the last one may have never really ended."
"California regulators are stepping up their oversight of Pacific Gas & Electric after finding that the nation’s largest utility has neglected the maintenance of an electrical grid that has ignited a series of deadly wildfires in Northern California and forced periodic blackouts affecting millions of people."
"The sludgy geyser of gas, water and mud startled residents of Marina del Rey. ... The geyser most likely spewed from a naturally occurring underground gas pocket, state officials concluded. But for Angelenos, it was a dramatic reminder of the legacy of fossil fuel extraction on the city’s Westside — a legacy felt to this day."
"After the worst fire season in California history and as drought conditions raise fears of what’s to come, Gov. Gavin Newsom and legislative leaders unveiled a $536-million proposal Thursday to boost efforts at firefighting and a variety of prevention measures, including vegetation management and the construction of fire-resistant structures across the state."
"California’s shrinking Salton Sea is getting a closer look scientifically with the state, local air districts, and community groups examining air, water, and even dust from the parched shoreline where water was once plentiful."
"A long-running plan to build a community of 19,000 homes on vast Tejon Ranch north of Los Angeles has been halted by a judge who cited high wildfire risk."
"Purple sea urchins have exploded in recent years off California, covering the ocean floor in what divers describe as a "purple carpet." And they devour kelp: the once-lush forests of seaweed that hugged the coastline are disappearing."
"California’s hopes for a wet “March miracle” did not materialize and a dousing of April showers may as well be a mirage at this point. The state appears in the midst of another drought only a few years after a punishing 5-year dry spell dried up rural wells, killed endangered salmon, idled farm fields and helped fuel the most deadly and destructive wildfires in modern state history."