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Morning Brief: Fire Danger, A New Village, And A Sustainable Thanksgiving

Dark and ominous clouds appear behind palm trees and a hillside. A red sun can be barely seen through the clouds.
The sun is seen behind smoke from the Bobcat fire rising above in the Angeles National Forest above Duarte, California on Sept. 7, 2020.
AFP via Getty Images)
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Good morning, L.A. It’s Nov. 22.

Gusty winds and dry air that started yesterday and are expected to keep going through tonight are creating an increased risk for fires throughout California. 

Authorities expressed concern that the Arlanza Fire, which began Sunday when an off-road vehicle caught fire in Riverside County, could be affected by the gusts; as of yesterday afternoon, it was threatening several homes in the area.

My colleague Sharon McNary reports that winds could get as high as 45 or 50 miles per hour from the coasts in Ventura and L.A. Counties all the way into Riverside, San Bernardino and Orange Counties.

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In SoCal, nearly 3,900 Southern California Edison customers have had their power shut off as a preventive measure, and as many as 14,500 have been notified that they may be next.

In addition to the increased risk for fires, today’s gusts are kicking up unhealthy amounts of dust. Experts are advising people who are sensitive to high quantities of particulate matter to avoid going outdoors, and to keep windows and doors closed until the air has cleared.

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As we’ve reported, wildfires are getting worse in California, due to the climate crisis as well as wildfire suppression, poor forest management, outdated infrastructure, and building homes deeper in fire danger zones. All but three of California’s 20 largest wildfires have occurred since the year 2000, and five of the top seven occurred in 2020 alone.

Keep reading for more on what’s happening in L.A., and stay safe out there.

What Else You Need To Know Today

Before You Go ... Eat Your Leftovers, And Other Thanksgiving Sustainability Suggestions

An overhead shot of a dinner table featuring 10 white plates with food on them. Four plates have salad and the rest have sweet potatoes and other foods. Hands enter the frame with utensils as people eat.
No one wants their holiday meal to devolve into a bitter argument, so we’re here to help you navigate this potentially tricky conversation.
(Stefan Vladimirov/Unsplash)

The climate crisis isn’t going to be solved in one day, let alone one national holiday. But as with so many societal issues, small steps add up, especially if they’re done collectively. You don’t have to compost or go vegan (unless you want to!) in order to be conscientious this turkey day. From buying local to eating outside, here are some suggestions for having a sustainable Thanksgiving.

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