A concerning new study reveals wildfire season is lengthening across the globe.
The study suggests the annual global wildfire seasons has lengthened by as much as 20 percent over the past 35 years as climate change causes temperatures to rise, Nature Communications reported.
"Fire weather seasons have lengthened across 29.6 million square kilometres (11.4 million square miles) of the Earth's vegetated surface," stated the paper, which was published in the journal Nature Communications. Fighting wildfires cost the United States about $1.7 billion per year over the past decade.
The research shows these factors lead to an overall increase in season length of 18.7 percent.
"We have shown that combined surface weather changes over the last three-and-a-half decades have promoted global wildfire weather season lengthening," said a team of scientists in the United States and Australia.
The team made their findings by looking at climate data and three indices of fire danger to map out wildfire patterns as far back as 1979. Weather, including "temperature, humidity, rainfall and wind speed," are the primary drivers of wildfires and are extremely susceptible to climate change. Wildfires have benefits such as forest clearing and improved grazing, but are also a threat to human life and property as well as nature.
Over the course of the study, the global land area was deemed to be "unusually" hot, and increased by an average of 6.3 percent each decade.
"Fire weather season length and long fire weather season affected area significantly increased across all vegetated continents except Australia," the researchers said. "If these trends continue, increased wildfire potential may have pronounced global socio-economic, ecological and climate system impacts."