CalFire reports that more than 3 million acres of the golden state have been ravaged by wildfires since the beginning of the year. Many of these wildfires can be completely unpredictable — like the lightning storm that sparked multiple fires in August. And no one will forget how often Californians have woken up to orange skies across the state. It is an eerie reminder that climate change continues to be an increasing problem that demands attention.
Beyond California, states along the west coast including Washington and Oregon have been issued dense smoke advisories as wildfires diminished air quality and produced serious health risks for citizens this summer. The past few months have been incredibly hazy and dark. Many residents remain indoors as much as possible to reduce exposure to harmful particles from smoke and ash.
But it isn’t just our communities impacted by the wildfires – it’s wildlife, the iconic landscapes of California, and everything in between – including national parks. In fact, the wildfires have caused some of the state’s national parks to temporarily close due to dangerous air quality levels and Colorado parks like Rocky Mountain National Park are following suit as wildfires ramp up in the area. The aftermath is driving environmental advocates to find solutions that will defend some of the nation’s most popular national parks, including Yosemite National Park.
With the health of our national parks and their visitors at risk, advocates are mobilizing to prevent further impact from the wildfire’s devastation. One of the organizations working to identify solutions is the National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA), a leading national nonprofit whose mission is to protect and preserve our national parks, and a longtime partner of SunPower. NPCA knows that addressing increasing wildfires means addressing climate change, and its primary causes—like greenhouse gas emissions. NPCA is advocating for policy solutions on Capitol Hill that prioritize climate impacts as well as the people, communities, and structures in the front country – in addition to working with the state of California on broader air quality issues, taking into account wildfires.
And while organizations, like our partner NPCA, are working to improve air quality following the wildfires, we’re doing our part at SunPower too. SunPower® solar panels help reduce the amount of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere by producing clean energy. Our affordable solar plus storage solutions provide homeowners with reliable energy that can also reduce their carbon footprint. In this way, transitioning to clean energy can aid in protecting national parks while improving air quality for both people and our parks.
Solar power can not only help fight climate change, but it can also save money on electricity while doing so. Many homeowners have experienced drastically reduced utility bills after the decision to go solar. And with SunPower featuring the most efficient solar panels in the market1, our solar cell technology is able to produce more energy than conventional cells.
Find out how solar energy can be customized to fit your lifestyle while also helping to save our planet!
This post originally appeared on the SunPower Resource Blog