A group of United States Senators–including Mark Udall and Michael Bennet–have asked the Forest Service to spend more time and money on several fires that hit the region this summer. The group wants the Service to try and curb the impact that any fire could have on the area in the future.
“Wildfire is a part of life for many Coloradans — and increasingly so. Roughly 40 percent of Coloradans live in the most wildfire-prone areas of our state, those areas between cities and forested lands,” Udall said. “Because so many communities live in these wildfire-prone areas, it is critical that we study past wildfires to prepare for future blazes. This study will help our state and federal firefighting and forest management agencies work together and adopt a strong, balanced approach to help protect our communities and keep Coloradans safe.”
Both Udall and Bennet are proponents of the stewardship contracting proponent of the Farm Bill that passed this summer. The contracting proponent requires that the Forest Service spend time rejuvenating affected fire areas. Colorado currently has 34 projects totaling more than 12,000 acres of land, a stat that Bennet says sums up the state’s need for greater fire safety.
“Studying this summer’s devastating wildfires can help us understand how to better protect people and their property, predict what conditions can lead to these types of fires and prevent some of the devastating damage we saw,” Bennet said. “Coloradans are increasingly vulnerable to wildfires and we must do everything we can to be prepared in the future.”