...why California has so many wildfires? (with Jared Dahl Aldern)

Ever Wonder? / January 19, 2022

Last fall, we opened a brand-new exhibit called Fire! Science & Safety, which invites our guests to explore Casa Del Fuego, Apartment 911 as a fire danger detective, seeking out fire and burn hazards to make their families, pets, and homes safer—both inside the home, as well as outside threats like wildfires. 

It’s been pretty rainy in California lately, so wildfires have largely faded from the headlines. But throughout 2020 and 2021, we heard about one giant catastrophic megafire after another. It seemed like our state was always burning. 

Ever wonder why California has so many wildfires? 

There are many factors at play here—climate change, drought, dead trees, longer fire seasons—but we can also learn a lot about what’s happening today by looking at our past. We talked to Dr. Jared Dahl Aldern (@JaredDahlAldern), an environmental historian and a fire practitioner who has a wealth of experience researching the history of fire in California, as well as learning from and working with Indigenous people who use fire to take care of the land. He walked us through some important events in our state’s history—from the Gold Rush to the formation of the National Forest Service—that help explain why there’s so much fire today. 

Have a question you've been wondering about? Send an email or voice recording to the podcast team to tell us what you'd like to hear in future episodes. 

Subscribe to our show on Apple PodcastsSpotify, or Google Podcasts. To see a full list of episodes, visit our show’s webpage


Perry Roth-Johnson (00:06):

Hello! This is Ever Wonder? from the California Science Center. I'm Perry Roth-Johnson.

Perry Roth-Johnson (00:13):

Welcome to Season 3 of our show! We took a few weeks off, but we're back now with some new episodes about wildfires. It's been pretty rainy in California lately, so wildfires have largely faded from the headlines. But throughout 2020 and 2021, we heard about one giant catastrophic megafire after another. It seemed like our state was always burning. Ever wonder why California has so many wildfires? Now, there are many factors at play here—climate change, drought, dead trees, longer fire seasons—but we can also learn a lot about what's happening today by looking at our past. We talked to Dr. Jared Dahl Aldern, an environmental historian and a fire practitioner, who has a wealth of experience researching the history of fire in California, as well as learning from and working with Indigenous people who use fire to take care of the land. He walked us through some important events in our state's history—from the Gold Rush to the formation of the National Forest Service—that help explain why there's so much fire today.

Perry Roth-Johnson (01:22):

Dr. Jared Dahl Aldern, you are a lead investigator and research associate with the West on Fire project at the Huntington-USC Institute on California and the West. You're also a co-founder and program coordinator for the Sierra-Sequoia Burn Cooperative—Jared, welcome to the show!

Jared Dahl Aldern (01:37):

Thank you very much.

Perry Roth-Johnson (01:38):

So I've really been looking forward to talking to you, Jared. Um, we first met because you graciously appeared in a short video series on wildfire that is now in a new exhibition called Fire! Science & Safety, here at the California Science Center. When we talk about California wildfires and how best to manage those fires, there's a lot to unpack. So I'm glad to have you on the show so we can dive in a little deeper. There were so many news headlines in 2020 about giant catastrophic megafires. One that particularly, uh, resonated with me was how the smoke and ash from nearby fires turned Bay Area skies orange—I have a lot of friends and family that live up there. And wildfires in 2021 seem to be burning at roughly, you know, the same order of magnitude. But before we dive into why we're seeing all of that, let's just start with your expertise in how it can help us unpack these issues. You described yourself as an environmental historian, uh, as a kind of shorthand. Can you tell us what that means? Environmental historian?

Jared Dahl Aldern (02:34):


Jared Dahl Aldern (02:35):

Uh, an environmental historian studies, the relationship between people and the environment or people in the land over time and changes in the environment and, uh, changes in land use practices. Uh, and so it's, uh, it's really looking at the, that scope of, of history through the lens of the environment or land and water and changes in continuities in, in those interrelationships between land and water and people.

Perry Roth-Johnson (03:10):

Uh, and just briefly for our listeners, uh, what is the West on Fire project? And like, why do, why do they need an environmental historian?

Jared Dahl Aldern (03:17):

Well, the West on Fire project is, is through the Huntington USC-Institute on California and the West. And, uh, it's, uh, a project that's, uh, actually rife with historians. It's it's full of historians. And, um, there has been in the past, uh, lots of study of fire history by scientists through methods, like, uh, looking for scars of wildfires in, uh, tree rings, uh, other various, you know, soil scientists, uh, look at at fire history in various ways. But this is really the, uh, one of the, the first initiatives, uh, that I've seen much less been a part of that, you know, I'm excited to be a part of it, uh, where historians take their methods of, for instance, looking through archives, uh, and also, uh, doing, uh, a little more of what I do, which is, is really, uh, focusing right now on oral history. So interviewing people and asking them about their past experiences with fire, for instance, I guess it's, um, sort of funny to, to say that, uh, history is providing a new lens, but, uh, the, the academic, um, uh, discipline of, of history has this opportunity through, you know, this initiative, uh, the West on Fire to, um, to provide some fresh perspectives on, on the history of fire.

Perry Roth-Johnson (04:54):

That that's really cool to hear, cuz I, I personally I find like where science and history intersect, that's where you get the really juicy and interesting stuff. So I hope we, we can dive into some of that before we do that though. I just want to turn to your other work at the Sierra-Sequoia Burn Collaborative. Um, you've described yourself as a fire practitioner. I think that's a little more straightforward, but just what does that mean for our listeners, fire practitioner? Sure.

Jared Dahl Aldern (05:16):

Well, uh, I practice prescribed fire and have had the great opportunity to help with indigenous cultural fire a few times. And uh, by fire practice, I, I mean, uh, in this case I'm not, I'm not a firefighter, uh, I've taken a, I've taken a few, uh, of the training courses that firefighters do take. Uh, but I, I don't have any experience as a firefighter. Um, so my practice is, uh, in working with groups like this, uh, Sierras-Sequoia Burn Cooperatives that we've organized to implement fire to intentionally put fire on the ground for good purposes. One of which, you know, we're hoping, uh, or really expecting, uh, will be lowering the risk of wildfire.

Perry Roth-Johnson (06:07):

And, and I heard you say the, the phrase prescribed burn, you know, so just to be clear, that's when we're intentionally starting a fire in a controlled way to try to get rid of some, some vegetation so that it won't burn later.

Jared Dahl Aldern (06:21):

Yes, um, that's, that's usually one of the main goals of a prescribed fire and the term, uh, prescribed fire. The most straightforward definition is that it is fire according to a written prescription. So it's carefully planned. There is a burn plan, uh, with, uh, that everyone, uh, including the burn boss, who's really in charge of the operation, uh, refers to the plan and, uh, things proceed according to the prescription that you've written for the fire. And it's very carefully prepared for in, in advance.

Perry Roth-Johnson (06:58):

And the other term, you mentioned, uh, Indigenous burning or cultural burning, how is that similar or different from prescribed burning?

Jared Dahl Aldern (07:05):

Well, it's interesting. I've had the opportunity to work with, uh, and, uh, I guess visit or observe the work of, um, some cultural fire practitioners in and, uh, in particular for several years. Uh, now my, my friend, Ron Goode who's Chairman of the North Fork Mono Tribe, and I have, uh, I've had the opportunity to work with him on, on several occasions. And, uh, he and I once, uh, wrote a definition of cultural fire. Um, and at the time we said that cultural fire is a form of prescribed fire and it is in the, in the sense that there is a prescription or a plan for a cultural fire, uh, that, uh, people are following. But, uh, I would, I would today, I think I would almost make more of a distinction between the two and say that, uh, cultural fire is, uh, is, is, is a cultural expression. There are certain objectives maybe, uh, to cultural fire that might include lowering the risk of, uh, a wildfire, but the purposes or objectives of a, of a cultural fire, uh, can be much broader including, uh, providing, uh, food and habitat for animals, you know, even, uh, increasing water resources, uh, increasing surface water, uh, by burning, burning the slopes in and burning around a spring in, in the right way, uh, can include, uh, burning plants so that they resprout, um, in a certain form. That's good, for instance, for, uh, basket makers, uh, you want the, you might burn a, a bramble of, of tangled bushes to, uh, and then wait for them to resprout. Uh, sometimes within days they'll start to resprout, uh, with nice straight green shoots that are, uh, incredibly useful for, um, art forms like basketry.

Perry Roth-Johnson (09:18):

Yeah, for useful for culture basically, right?

Jared Dahl Aldern (09:19):

Yeah. I mean, those are examples in, uh, I hesitate almost to, to stop there because cultural fire is a part of culture and culture is so broad, you know? Yeah. Uh, people put fire on the land for spiritual reasons, you know, it's, um, cultural fire, to me, maybe it's a form of prescribed fire in the, in the sense that you're following a plan, but, um, in a lot of ways that term prescribed fire, doesn't really encompass cultural fire in all of, all of what it's about.

Perry Roth-Johnson (09:49):

So let's, let's zoom ahead to what we're seeing now, and then maybe wind the clock back, uh, to understand how we got here. So now, uh, it's almost like cliche to say, but, um, you see it written so often in newspaper articles. Now we're having more intense, more frequent and often much bigger wildfires in California. Uh, I saw a lot of headlines this year dominated by names like the Dixie fire and the Caldor fire. And we often hear about how climate change is a driving factor of California wildfires. We're always in a drought. It seems like there's lots of dead trees or built up fuel that all lead to longer fire seasons. And that's certainly true, but are there other factors we might have overlooked in the history of fire in California?

Jared Dahl Aldern (10:33):

Yes. I think that we can connect it to what we were just talking about with, with cultural fire, uh, because, uh, when, when people are, are living on the land, uh, and practicing their culture, I I've heard it said that at, at one time out on the land in, in California, the smell of smoke was as common as the sound of bird song. Really, there was a daily regimen of people burning for various purposes. And so, um, when, when people are on the land living and carrying out their their lives, um, and you have, uh, constant work, either preparing for a burn or igniting the burn and burning, or, uh, you know, what firefighters and cultural burners would call mopping up after a burn, uh, raking coals and making sure that everything is, is out. Then you have a condition where you all are always keeping that, that risk of a wildfire, uh, fairly low, what it led to the conditions really initially is the, is the disruption of that, that daily relationship with people living all over California. Um, whereas Indigenous people were displaced, uh, removed and, um, you know, quite honestly killed as, as genocide proceeded, uh, in what's now the state of California, uh, that daily regimen and daily relationship of, of people to land water and fire was more and more disrupted. And so it's, um, you could trace that history up to, uh, the really dangerous or hazardous conditions that we have today because, um, people are not out there every day, right? Tending, tending the land, uh, certainly, you know, under windy conditions, especially and windy conditions or conditions that we're seeing more frequently because of climate change. We're always going to have large fires, but if conditions can come back to what they have been in the past, uh, those fires won't be doing so much damage because they won't be burning through areas that are dense with fuel that hadn't been burned for 150 years.

Perry Roth-Johnson (12:56):

Uh, so just to be clear, uh, we're talking about like around the year 1850, what what's significant about that time?

Jared Dahl Aldern (13:03):

Uh, well, if we go back to 1850, so I guess that's a little more like 170 years ago, the big or extreme changes that came along with the, a gold rush and, uh, the rush of Anglo settlers into, uh, what was, you know, up until then Mexican, California, uh, and before that Spanish, California, and before that Indigenous homelands, you know, um, so you're going way back. You can, right? So you can go through all those changes. Um, but, uh, one of the, one of the most extremes, the extreme changes would be around 150 to 170 years ago, uh, with the big rush of, of Anglo settlers into, uh, what's now California became California during that, that period in <affirmative> and the, and the displacement, um, of Indigenous people from the land.

Perry Roth-Johnson (14:00):

You sort of painted a picture earlier of like what the landscape might have looked like that smoke was as common as hearing birds, uh, bird song. What other characteristics can you describe about the landscape when it was just Indigenous people, you know, being stewards of the land? Uh...

Jared Dahl Aldern (14:17):

I've had a long time interest in the, in the history of grizzly bears in California. Oh, so they're now, they're now extricated. There are no grizzly bears in California. The only bears, the only grizzly bear, you know, is, is on the California flag. Uh, or there are grizzly bears in zoos, but the only live bear out on the land are, are black bears in, in California at this point. But at one time there was a large and vibrant population of grizzly bears. Uh, so prior to 1850, for instance. Yeah. And, uh, if you, uh, so I've, I've looked at and thought about, uh, not only the history of grizzly bears, but their, their biological requirements. And so if you look at, uh, Grizzlies today, for instance, in other areas, Montana, or even brown bears, Alaskan brown bears up, up in Alaska that you'll, you'll see that the requirements, what bears really like are a lot of open grasslands and, uh, a lot of open shrub lands, not densely packed shrubs, but shrubs that they can walk through and maybe grab some Manzanita berries or acorns off the, off the scrub oak, oak trees that they can walk under and, and get acorns. And, uh, basically a, a, a fairly open park life landscape is great for grizzly bears. As long as you also have denser vegetation, like a forest or old growth chaparral nearby that they can use for, uh, hiding or for thermal cover to, to stay warm, uh, at, at cold times, you know, you wanna be under the trees, the bears wanting to be under the trees. And when, uh, I think about that sort of landscape that a bear required, that bears grizzlies must have required, back in the early 19th century and before, uh, that's the type of landscape that would be created and maintained or tended by, uh, Indigenous cultural burners, you know, it makes, mm, perfect sense. Grizzly bears, you know, according to scientists, uh, really started to rise in, in population, uh, around, uh, 10,000 years ago in what's now California. And, uh, you can, you can, I think, uh, there's a good case for correlating <affirmative>, you know, an animal population like that with the human practices that were, uh, essentially taking care of the animal population, creating this landscape of, you know, plentiful surface water, open shrub lands, and open forest, uh, lots of grasslands and, uh, oak woodlands, um, with, uh, plenty of dense old growth forest in, in old growth chaparral down south interspersed.

Perry Roth-Johnson (17:25):

Yeah. So it's like the environment wasn't just by accident or by coincidence necessarily good for grizzly bears. There was this sort of symbiotic or relationship between the indigenous people out on the land, maintaining it, being good stewards of it, and that allowed the grizzlies to thrive.

Jared Dahl Aldern (17:42):

Right? Yeah. Yeah. And, and certainly natural fire is a big part of that. You know, lightning strikes keeping, keeping the, the landscape, um, open and clear by burning, you know, uh, causing fires that, that burn at the, at the right time of year to burn some of the underbrush from under the trees and, and that sort of thing. Uh, but they're, you know, Indigenous, as people being careful observers are going to be, uh, looking at when natural fire is, is sufficient. And when natural fire might have to be subsidized by, uh, you know, people setting, setting fires also. So...

Perry Roth-Johnson (18:29):

We have fire is like a natural thing that happens in California, either by lightning strikes or by Indigenous burns. Uh, around the gold rush around 1850, you have a lot of these Anglo settlers, uh, coming in, um, for economic reasons. Uh, walk me through what happens maybe through the next 50 years until like the early 1900s, what, what what's happening, um, around the history of fire then?

Jared Dahl Aldern (18:56):

Sure. Well, you have, uh, you know, violent displacement of Indigenous people in, uh, therefore the fire regimen or, or fire regime, the frequency and intensity of fires is, are starting to change because of that, because people aren't engaged in those daily practices, uh, any longer. And, uh, but you also have some of the Anglo settlers, you have the miners coming in. Uh, but you also have, uh, for instance, um, stock herders, uh, and, uh, here in the Sierra Nevada, uh, I'm actually here on the, the Central Valley floor. And uh, there, you know, the stock herders pretty quickly realize that it gets really hot in the Central Valley, yeah. In the summer. So they start to herd their sheep up into the Sierra in the summer to find a cool and moist Meadows. Uh, and, um, this is, uh, you know, one of the beginnings of the integration of Indigenous people into, uh, the wage labor economy. Uh, the stock herders started to hire, um, the, the Indigenous folks who were there, very familiar with the landscape as guides. So they would be taking them out on these trails, which, you know, essentially are gonna lead from one meadow to another, because those were the really productive, wonderful places that people had been living since time immemorial. And stock herders, the, the people who are herding sheep, uh, actually in many cases, increased the fire frequency. Um, so really, uh, for instance, you would take, uh, sheep to a meadow and they would, uh, uh, graze it, um, maybe overgraze it, uh, but then, uh, to increase your, uh, chances of having, uh, great growth of forage for the next summer, what you would do as a stocker would be to light that meadow, as you bring the sheep back down the slope to the valve, uh, you know, as you're, um, getting, getting close to winter, there used to be saying that, uh, fire follows sheep as night follows the day, uh, because really every time there's every time there there's sheep in an area, then you're almost guaranteed that when the sheep leave, the herders are going to be lighting that fire behind them to try to stimulate grass growth the next year. So they would do that every year, essentially. And, um, annual burning, usually all you're gonna maximize with annual burning is grass. And, uh, so you're gonna convert that meadow to a grassy meadow, and you might be losing some of your, uh, more herbaceous plants that are valuable as medicines or for other purposes for indigenous people. So that, that was a factor that actually increased fire frequency in the, in the late 1800s. Uh, and then you had the United States federal government, uh, first the army, and then eventually the, the, what became the Forest Service and the National Park Service coming in and saying, uh, these fires are too frequent and they're damaging. They're gonna be interested in timber resources, you know, they're damaging, damaging the, the forest. Uh, and so that's where you start get, uh, a crackdown or a policy of fire suppression, which, uh, really culminated, uh, you know, to speed ahead to 1910 or 1911 with, uh, a policy saying, uh, you know, our, our job as the Forest Service is to suppress all fires. And in fact, uh, suppress them by 10:00 a.m., uh, the day after they start.

Perry Roth-Johnson (22:55):

Yeah. That's that, uh, infamous now I missed 10:00 a.m. policy that, that, that I've been reading about. Right? Like if we see a fire, we'll have it out by 10:00 a.m. the next day is that, that kind of how it went?

Jared Dahl Aldern (23:06):

Right. Right. And, uh, they were seating with what they called scientific forestry at the time. And forestry is focused on maximizing the production of lumber out of your, out of your forest, you know? Um, so they were, they saw fire as a destructive force that was starting to burn up the trees that they were interested in taking to market and, you know, using to build San Francisco.

Perry Roth-Johnson (23:36):

Right. Yeah. Because around this time there was a lot of logging industry in California.

Jared Dahl Aldern (23:42):

Right. And the, the timber industry, the logging really did start, you know, back in the 1870s and 1880s. So you had a, a combination of some people starting fires, other business people wanting to maximize the yield of, of trees that they can take to a mill. And you had the Forest Service then coming in and, uh, instituting a policy of total fire suppression because they saw fire as destructive to the timber resource. So then, yes, we get to the point where you have this buildup of fuel because they are pretty good at putting out fires for, for a while. You know?

Perry Roth-Johnson (24:26):

So, not to put too fine a point on it, but, uh, what effect did this policy of fire suppression have on the landscape over time? So we're fast forwarding from, you know, 1910, 1911. I don't know, a few decades forward from that.

Jared Dahl Aldern (24:40):

Well, I think we have to factor in not only the fire suppression, the timber cutting practices that were going on, even back in the 1880s, uh, the approach was to go in and clear cut an area, um, here in what's now this Sierra National Forest and other areas of the, of the Sierra, uh, there was a method called railroad logging where you would build tracks into an area and clear cut that, that area that was close enough to where you could skid or, or drag the logs to the train, which would then take the logs. Um, you know, the cut trees back to the mill on the railroad. So, um, railroad logging was associated with clear cutting. Um, so there were vast areas that were cut and, um, what happened was they were taking out all of the big trees and, uh, you did have some regrowth, but what grew back was, uh, a dense thicket, uh, or what foresters might call today, a dog hair thicket as thick as dog hair, uh, of trees—oh, wow. um—that come up in between where all those big trees had sort of been standing in a stately way and shading out their competitors. Now you've got the whole ground opened up to sunlight coming down and the seed stock is in the soil and you get this dog hair thicket of trees growing back. So you get very, very thick forest growth. And, uh, that, that is, that is fuel buildup. So instead of these open forests that you can see through, you have, uh, very thin kindling essentially.

Perry Roth-Johnson (26:39):

So on the one hand you have this removal of Indigenous people from the land who knew how to take care of the land to preserve these kind of open forests that aren't tightly packed, like dog hair, like you said. And then on the other hand, you have these, these economic pressures to produce as much timber as possible for the logging industry. And both those things combined have led to build up a fuel, sounds like over, you know, the past century or so. Right? Did I get that right?

Jared Dahl Aldern (27:10):

I think so. That's a good summary.

Perry Roth-Johnson (27:13):

Uh, has the U.S. Forest Service's view of fire suppression changed over time? I mean, that was in 1910, you know, 1920s. What, what would, what would they say today?

Jared Dahl Aldern (27:24):

Right. Well, the overarching attitude or the policy of fire suppression lasted for a, for a good long time with the Forest Service and other public agencies, uh, you know, just think of, of Smokey the Bear, the idea that, um, "only you can prevent forest fire" as, and, uh, forest fires were always viewed as, as a bad thing. Uh, you know, if you, if you think of the movie Bambi, so, you know, all through the 1930s, 1940s, the general culture was we have to prevent forest fires and a fire is always bad. I think, uh, probably you could trace it to around the 1970s, um, that, uh, some, uh, I mean there were voices in the wilderness if you wanna call it that, uh, of, of people who were saying, you know, no, we should be, we should be burning. Uh, but there were few and far between, and, um, uh, the, generally the agency, the Forest Service, uh, started to come around, I would say in the 1970s. Um, and then, uh, you, you look at the, um, the 1980s and the great fires in, in Yellowstone, and really got a lot of, lot of people's attention and, uh, more and more focus has come onto prescribed fire as really the best approach.

Perry Roth-Johnson (28:57):

So I feel like, you know, we've talked sufficiently about, uh, the perception of fire's bad side. Um, but since fire can be good, let's shift gears a little bit, think about what we can do better in the future, in your view, what are we, you know, as a community, we, as a state in partnership with tribal communities doing to deal with this, or what should we be doing to reduce catastrophic wildfires?

Jared Dahl Aldern (29:20):

Well, that, that sure is a, a big question. And it's it, it is a quandary because the, uh, the conditions, uh, particularly with, with climate change on top of these, uh, dense trees and shrubs, uh, out on the land or, or dry grasslands, um, make it really difficult to, uh, take those first few steps, uh, or, um, those first nibbles with fire at bringing those, those healthy fire regimens back. You know, just in the, in the past couple of years, I think there's been more attention turning to that question of what, what can we do differently? And just in the past few months, the state of California has the governor signed some legislation that is aimed really at, uh, empowering private burners and cultural fire practitioners to carry on their, their practices. We're at, we're at an interesting, I think turning point in, in history in terms of agencies like the state agency, Cal Fire, and the federal agency, the Forest Service and, and other federal agencies that are involved in fire management and, um, private parties like ranchers and, uh, then Indigenous people. Uh, and in terms of who's, who's going to do what and when and where, um, but that's, that's, that's the whole task on a complex landscape in a complex society. Uh, there are some, some signs that, that people are willing to do the really hard work of coordinating and collaborating.

Perry Roth-Johnson (31:15):

You know, so Jared, if someone listening to this, uh, you know, here's what you're working on, uh, wants to help or get involved somehow in this work, uh, is there anything you recommend that they do?

Jared Dahl Aldern (31:25):

Well, uh, as far as getting involved with prescribed fire, there are prescribed fire associations, uh, up and down the state or, or mostly in Northern California. Uh, but, uh, you know, I suggest, uh, maybe, uh, searching around on the internet for, uh, for a PBA in your area. Uh, but really if you're interested in, in supporting the idea and the, and the practice of reestablishing Indigenous cultural fire, uh, I would say the, the way to support cultural fire is to support Indigenous culture and to support tribal economies and communities, uh, you know, uh, patronized tribal businesses, uh, whether it's a gas station or a restaurant, or even a casino, um, and, uh, attend tribal events, uh, which you might also be able to find, uh, be the internet and, you know, tribes, Facebook pages and that sort of thing. See if there are efforts where you can help financially or, uh, by volunteering. And, um, really the idea is, uh, also to, uh, I would think, uh, do what you can in your area, in, in your region where you live to make sure that tribes have access to, and some sort of jurisdiction over land, uh, over their, uh, ancestral homelands, so that, uh, uh, tribes could mean advocating with, uh, the Forest Service in a national forest, for instance, to, uh, make sure that that tribes have a say in, in some control over fire management policy. And if you give, if you give tribes this support and the resources, uh, and, um, the capacity to, um, affect policy and how, how fire, uh, management proceeds, it's a lot of good things could...

Perry Roth-Johnson (33:32):

...happen. Jared, where can people find you online and follow your work?

Jared Dahl Aldern (33:36):

My website is, uh, my full name, jareddahlaldern.net and, uh, I really do need to redesign that website. I promise it will happen soon, uh, but that's a, that's a good place to, uh, to find me and to send me, uh, an email through the website. And, uh, also, uh, if you look up the west on fire USC or the Huntington-USC Institute on California and the West, uh, I'm on there along with all the other wonderful folks who are, who are involved in, uh, that initiative. And, uh, there's, there's a lot of exciting things going on. So I would, I would love to hear from people who, who might have an interest in it.

Perry Roth-Johnson (34:19):

Did I see you are on Twitter too?

Jared Dahl Aldern (34:21):

I am, yes. And again, it's my full name, @JaredDahlAldern.

Perry Roth-Johnson (34:25):

Well, it's been really enlightening talking to you. Thank you, uh, Jared, for helping us unpack the history of fire in California. And thank you so much for joining us on the show.

Jared Dahl Aldern (34:34):

Sure. Thank you so much, Perry.

Perry Roth-Johnson (34:36):

That's our show and thanks for listening. Until next time, keep wondering. Ever Wonder? from the California Science Center is produced by me, Perry Roth-Johnson, along with Devin Waller and Jennifer Aguirre. Liz Roth-Johnson is our editor. Theme music provided by Michael Nickolas and Pond5. We'll drop new episodes every other Wednesday. If you're a fan of the show, be sure to subscribe and leave us a rating or review on Apple Podcasts. It really helps other people discover our show. Have a question you've been wondering about? Send an email or voice recording to [email protected], to tell us what you'd like to hear in future episodes.