In the United States, a three-day runaway bushfire in Yosemite National Park, eastern California, is now threatening its giant sequoias, the wildlife park announced on Sunday, July 10.

The fire, which reached Mariposa Grove (“Butterfly Grove”), the busiest area of ​​the park because there are hundreds of redwoods among the largest in the world, “currently it covers 644 hectares and nothing stops it”the park said, adding that 360 firefighters were mobilized. Part of the park was closed to the public on Friday.

The fire in Yosemite National Park has been out of control for three days.

The “Grizzly Giant” watered permanently

One of the teams prepares the “Grizzly Giant” – the park’s most famous and spectacular giant sequoia – for the approaching flames by watering it continuously. “From the top of its 209 feet [64 mètres]is the second largest in Yosemite “specifies the park, which transmits the measures taken to protect it on social networks.

Giant sequoias are among the most fire resistant trees and have survived for thousands of years.

But extreme drought and forest fires which now last much longer, it can damage them. This is how 10,000 of them – about 14% of the total number of redwoods in the world – died in 2020 in a major fire.

“Given the combustion conditions and the fires we are talking about, we expect to have another four, five or six very tough months”warned one of the California fire chiefs, Brian Fennessy, in June.

This area of ​​Yosemite Park was largely redeveloped and reopened in 2018.

Nearly two million acres burned in the United States this year, more than double the average for the past decade, according to data from the National Interagency Fire Center. New Mexico and Alaska are particularly hard hit, while nearly all of California is in drought conditions.

Le Monde with AFP and Reuters

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