‘Living with fire’ may lead to less destructive wildfires, say Indigenous land stewards

As wildfires rage across California, leveling structures and taking lives, Indigenous leaders say the lessons of the state’s first inhabitants might have mitigated this disaster and could still help avoid others. Although unpredictable weather and dry conditions have fueled the fires, Indigenous Californians wonder what might have been had state and federal land managers adopted some of the millennial-long stewardship practices of the state’s Indian tribes, who have learned to live alongside wildfire instead of trying to erase it from the landscape.