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Hawaii Battles Drought, Fires And Mudslides With Record Low Rainfall In Many Regions

Hawaii is known for its lush landscapes, dense foliage and beaches. And now, it’s also known for its drought.

In Maui, some locals, including a former state lawmaker, asked tourists to stay away. Former legislator Kaniela Ing tweeted “Stop coming to Hawaii. They are treating us like second-class citizens, literally cutting off our water to feed over-tourism.”

And on the Big Island, the drought played a role this month in the island’s record-breaking wildfire that burned more than 40,000 acres, about 62 square miles. It’s mostly contained, but officials there say they now face the prospect of mudslides, blowing ash and floods.

Here & Now‘s Robin Young checks in with Hawaii County Deputy Fire Chief Eric Moller to talk about his island’s climate challenges.

This article was originally published on WBUR.org.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.