The campaign for president is sucking all the oxygen out of the news. Startling and disturbing revelations about the incumbent president consume vats of ink, billions of bytes and hours of air time every day.

Yet, the fact that western America is burning has gotten national news coverage worthy of a fender bender.

It raises some serious questions. How many more towns will have to burn down, how many hundreds of thousands of people more will have to evacuate and lose their towns, homes and livelihoods before climate change becomes the pressing global issue it should be?

Hundreds of fires and millions of acres are burning in California, Oregon and Washington. As of press time, at least six people had died, some trying to escape the flames. Many fires are uncontained and fire crews are growing exhausted.

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown said the fires might inflict the greatest loss of life and property in the state’s 161-year history. Her state has lost five small towns so far. Parts of Medford, population 82,000, have been evacuated.

A firestorm consumed most of the small town of Malden in eastern Washington. That state’s Gov. Jay Inslee ran unsuccessfully in the Democratic presidential primary to try to make climate change a national priority.

All national forests have been closed in California where multiple fires have blanketed the coast in more smoke than meteorologists have ever seen. It was so dark at 9 a.m. in San Francisco on Wednesday that streetlights were on. The sun created a dystopian sky of orange. Fires have burned 2.5 million acres with no end in sight.

The COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic has diverted the nation’s attention from many matters since March, but none may be more important than climate change.

Unusually high winds are driving all of the fires. Idaho and Utah got a taste of them on Monday along with a temperature swing from the sweltering 90s to nearly freezing temperatures that night.

COVID-19 is a nightmare, but climate change could be worse. Believing that climate change is a hoax dreamed up by green liberals imperils America. We must get serious, buckle up and fix the problem before climate change consumes the West and the world.

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