From the Rim fire currently engulfing California to the Black Forest fire that burned more than 500 homes in Colorado, wildfires are becoming more destructive. In this video, Matthew Hurteau — assistant professor of forest resources at Penn State University — explains how warming temperatures, prolonged drought, and a century’s worth of fire suppression policy are “priming the system to make it more flammable.”

After you watch the video, be sure to check out Climate Desk’s detailed explainer on the link between climate change and destructive fires.

This story was produced as part of the Climate Desk collaboration.