Maui Wildfires Caused by Nonnative Grasses Grown on Abandoned Farmland

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The fires that have been ravaging the island of Maui, Hawaii for the past few days have caused massive destruction.

80 confirmed deaths and 1000 people reported missing are only a fraction of the disastrous effect that these wildfires have had on the area.

The fire has destroyed Lahaina town, burned 2,170 acres of land, and is estimated to cost $5.52 billion to rebuild.

Unfortunately, many of these tragedies could have been prevented if proper emergency notifications had sounded when the flames encroached on Wednesday.

The Cause Behind The Fires

According to experts from University of Hawaii’s Ecosystem Extension Program and wildfire specialist Clay Trauernicht, the increase in fires can be attributed to nonnative grasses growing on what used to be farmland and sprawling plantations in Maui since 1990s.

Now that agriculture has been pulled off this land it is being filled with burnable fuels which no one appears to be doing anything about.

This is similar to what happened in California where environmentalists thought they were helping by preventing forests from being cleared but ironically it made matters worse as debris made wildfires spread faster.

Although global warming is often blamed for such disasters most people who are experienced with dealing with them know that isn’t necessarily always true although it does remain a factor that shouldn’t be ignored either way.

Emergency Notifications: What Went Wrong?

Unfortunately emergency sirens did not sound when the fires got dangerously close prompting Governor Josh Green to launch a full review into why this happened while also noting that telecommunications were down during this time as firefighters were already dealing with other fires elsewhere at the same time.

This was why there was probably no warning given beforehand either way even though officials believe it might’ve provided much-needed help in some cases at least had they known earlier what was happening behind closed doors so they could act accordingly.

Teams still haven’t gone into any buildings yet due to safety concerns but it’s expected more dead bodies might be found inside them once they do go back in there eventually once conditions permit them too so investigations can begin right away into exactly how this all began in first place without further endangering lives needlessly otherwise.


In conclusion, these devastating wildfires on Maui are the results of years-long negligence towards invasive grasses growth on former farming lands coupled with failures of emergency notifications when crisis struck ultimately leading up us where we are now.

Teams have not gone into any of the burned buildings yet, and it’s unclear how many more dead might be found inside them as the fire descended on them with no warning due to these failures.




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