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A Quiet 2023 U.S. Wildfire Season?


With most of this year now past, what are the numbers regarding U.S. acreage consumed by wildfire? (Rod Bain and USDA meteorologist Brad Rippey)

Thanksgiving week precipitation put a damper on mid-Atlantic wildfires that consumed over 16,000 acres in Virginia and North Carolina.

USDA meteorologist Brad Rippe says even with that significant November wildfire activity, "We are coming to the end of at least on paper one of the most quiet wildfire seasons that we have seen in a generation."

The National Interagency Fire Center notes that with November's end, "We have seen less than 2.6 million acres of vegetation burned in the United States so far in 2023."

If those numbers hold, 2023 would be the smallest annual wildfire acreage consumption since 1998, a year that 1.3 million acres burned across the country.

Contrasting the quiet activity in the Western and Central US, our nation's deadliest wildfire in a century, the Lahaina fire in Hawaii, took place this year.