Report: Fewer trees died off in California in 2018

Federal forestry officials say the die-off of trees in California forests slowed in 2018 thanks in part to the state receiving more rain.

But the U.S. Forest Service warned that dead trees continue to pose a hazard to people and infrastructure, especially in the central and southern Sierra Nevada regions where they can serve as fuel for wildfires.

A survey found 18 million trees died in 2018, compared to 27 million the previous year. More than 147 million trees have died in California since 2010, the start of a five-year drought.

Officials declared an end to the drought in 2017 after a wet winter that drenched the state in rain and snow. But California has seen some of its worst wildfires in recorded history since then.

Dawn Kamber