Mendocino Complex Fire now 4th largest wildfire in California history

Flames from Carr Fire in Shasta County on Monday

As of Monday, the Mendocino Complex Fire shows little sign of slowing down.

Authorities say three men tending to a marijuana garden were arrested over the weekend after they refused to leave a fire evacuation zone in Northern California, hindering firefighters' efforts against a massive blaze.

"There's some challenges that firefighters are facing near the fire and in the area of the fire".

The wildfires are "extremely fast, extremely aggressive, extremely risky", said Scott McLean, a deputy chief with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. "You got steep terrain that makes it hard for firefighters". But Nguyen said these have not happened in the affected areas.

The Mendocino Complex Fire has destroyed 75 homes and forced thousands to flee. Meanwhile, the Ranch Fire burning north of Hopland continued to grow in the north and southeastern directions. The number one spot belongs to last year's Thomas Fire, which burned 281,893 acres.

Firefighters are unlikely to see some respite.

"We're going back into the high 90s". "Everything is still dry".

In his first tweet about this summer's California wildfires, President Trump blamed environmental laws for making the blazes worse by preventing firefighters from using a "massive amount of readily available water".

The deadly Carr Fire in California, already described by officials as the state's sixth most destructive wildfire, grew almost 10,000 acres overnight Saturday as authorities said a seventh death was tied to the blaze.

The Carr Fire has now burned through 164,413 acres and has caused seven deaths, including a power utility worker who died over the weekend and two firefighters.

The White House did not immediately respond when asked about Gleick's comments.

President Trump nevertheless criticised Democrat Governor Brown, repeating his attacks on California's environmental laws. "Must also tree clear to stop fire spreading!"

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On Saturday, California Gov. The state's fire agency, CalFire, said it has not had problems accessing water.

Denham and his Central Valley colleagues are especially exercised about a plan announced last month by the California State Water Resources Control Board to step up water flows into the San Joaquin River, which eventually empties into the Pacific.

With blazes continuing to ravage the state, we set out on a fact check.

"The big fires have scores of water-dropping helicopters getting water from nearby lakes and reservoirs", he said. "That's the ultimate driver behind what's happening in California".

"This is gobbledygook bullshit", tweeted Peter Gleick, co-founder of the Pacific Institute and a member of the the U.S. National Academy of Sciences. Water diversion also contributes to increased salinity of delta ecosystems.

The president's comment comes after he said Sunday that too much water from the northern part of the state is being wasted by flowing into the Pacific Ocean.

Keith Gilless is a UC Berkeley professor of forest economics and chairman of the California Board of Forestry and Fire Protection. The rivers and lakes from which fire crews get water to drop on fires are full.

Their demands have nothing to do with the availability of water for firefighting. In the coming days, and perhaps longer, this line will be extended east through the Mendocino National Forest, potentially through the Snow Mountain Wilderness, to keep the fire from continuing to move north through the National Forest.

Local officials and experts have criticised and dismissed his tweets.

Experts say Trump is giving voice to Republican opposition to the state's progressive environmental policies by taking issue with state measures created to protect fish in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta by allowing water to flow through the delta and the San Francisco Bay, then out to the ocean.

Trump seemed to be referring to proposals by some California Republicans to expand the Shasta Dam, located near the heart of the Carr Fire. That likely references either future federal funding assistance or his approval to move water stored in federal facilities to help fight the California fires.

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