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America faces natural disasters

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America faces natural disasters

Maggie M. '19, Writer

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Natural disasters have hit nearly every continent in 2017. Last year alone, the U.S. has lost amounts up to $306 billion  to 16 disasters including fires, hurricanes and other weather related disasters according to BBC News.

“ It’s unbelievable and cazy how many natural disasters there have been in such a small time frame. People from all around the world, states and countries were brought together to aid the ones in need,” Mia S. ‘19 said.

One of the biggest natural disasters America has faced this year has been forest fires. These fires occur across the west side of the U.S., but are most commonly found in California.  California has faced over 9,000 fires in 2017 alone, and has called the most recent fire,the  Thomas fire, as the most destructive fire that California has ever faced. The fire burned down more than 1,000 buildings, and lasted for 23 days in December. Over 2,000 firefighters and other figures were on the scene. According to  Ca.Gov , the fire burned over 281,000 acres in Santa Barbara county.

California resident, Laurel Achenbach, lives in northern San Diego. Achenbach has lived in California for over 30 years, and has experienced a variety of natural disasters in the San Diego area. A couple years ago, San Diego experienced an extreme heatwave. Residents were limited to the amount of water they could to use for showering or watering plants.

“In California it seems every time a natural disaster ends, a new one begins. We have seen disasters like earthquakes, fires and heat waves,” Achenbach said.

For more than a decade, America has avoided any major hurricanes from the south coast but as of 2017, America faced two of the biggest hurricanes, Harvey and Irma. Both hurricanes hit the south coast with winds over 130 MPH. Many homes experienced over 40 inches of rain. The U.S. is still recovering from the damages done, which were up to $200 billion in cost. Both hurricanes happened in August and September and impacted cities and states all along the coast. Months after the hurricane, America is still struggling to recover from the two disasters.

Last year alone, natural disasters have been responsible for over thousands of deaths across the world. Scientists have predicted 2018 to be one of the “worst” years for earthquakes according to Time magazine.

So larger hurricanes are coming. More wildfires will ignite. Longer heat waves will soar. And other climate disasters are likely grow bigger, more intense, more expensive and more frequent. We see them on the horizon. And we need to start preparing now.” according to Vox.

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