Tahoe survived another night as fire crews worked to keep the Caldor Fire away from South Lake Tahoe as the fire continued burning east toward the Nevada Border. The fire has now burned nearly 208,000 acres and was just 23% contained as of Wednesday evening and is the 15th largest wildfire in state history. Seventeen of the state’s 20 largest fires have burned in the last 21 years as climate change caused by the extraction and combustion of fossil fuels has supercharged fires.
“This is getting to be, you know, ridiculously stupid,” South Lake Tahoe resident Mark Rickter told NPR at a Red Cross shelter on the northern side of the lake. “Wind-driven fires – this is what, you know, burned Paradise,” he added. “This is what’s happening with the Dixie Fire. Now we have the Tamarack Fire and the Caldor Fire. So yeah, I’ve been scared.” (Sacramento Bee $, CNN, NPR, KCRA Sacramento, Tahoe Daily Tribune, AP; Climate Signals background: 2021 Western wildfire season)