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The Editors

After Yarnell, Let’s Get Ready to Fight the Next Fire

The families of the 19 elite firefighters killed June 30 in a forest fire outside Yarnell, Arizona, deserve more than just our gratitude and condolences. Their memory should prompt governments at all levels to remedy their failure to deal with the growing threat of these disasters.

Reducing the cost of future fires, in lives and property, requires understanding what got us here in the first place. Yes, climate change has led to drier conditions and more fires: More than 9 million acres burned in 2012, an area bigger than New Jersey, Connecticut and Delaware combined and almost twice the annual average since 1990.