Fires spread by the Diablo winds and fueled by dry grass and brush spread through California's Napa and Sonoma regions in early October 2017. Scientists say climate change is loading the dice for wildfires. Credit: Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images
In the evolution of life on this planet, cooperation between living processes began over very small scales and has progressively increased through the formation of larger and large-scale cooperative groups and organisms. Three thousand million years ago, cooperation extended only between molecular processes that were separated by about a millionth of a meter, the scale of early cells. Now, cooperation extends between human organisms that are separated by up to twelve million meters, the scale of the planet. The same evolutionary forces that drove the expansion of cooperative organization in the past can be expected to continue to do so in the future.