But humans can counteract global warming impacts by creating more fire-resilient societies.
With wildfires continuing to rage across southern California, a fire researcher says lowering fire risk means reconsidering where and how we build our communities.
Many countries around the world are vulnerable to wildfires, but a fire engineer warns that most are not spending enough on research into how fires spread and ways to reduce risks.
The media and policymakers often say a 'perfect storm' of environmental factors cause wildfires but that ignores the role of irresponsible urban planning and development in raising fire risks.
There are physical, cultural and legal reasons why fire prevention measures didn't avert the tragedy at the Grenfell Tower – and other buildings are still at risk.
There are three key principles: prevent risk, evacuate users and minimise damage – in that order.
Massive damage and suffering was caused when a London tower block became an inferno.
They used to be boring. Now they're little arsonists.