Monday, August 2, 2021

Play

Hundreds of thousands of Medi-Cal recipients are paying monthly premiums when they donít have to; Dr. Fauci predicts the pandemic will get worse.

Play

The Texas voting rights fight gets star power; lawmakers stage a sit-in as the eviction moratorium expires; and Senators work overtime on infrastructure.

The Dangers of Living in the "Fire Plain"

Play

Monday, August 13, 2012   

HARTFORD, Conn. - You may have heard of a flood plain, but what about a fire plain? Some researchers are suggesting that thinking about forests in the same way we think about rivers may help stem some of the devastating damage seen in recent months from wildfires in Colorado and other western states. It can apply to eastern forests, too.

The idea is to either limit development in fire-prone areas or make sure the development is done in a way that encourages safety. That means tin instead of cedar-shake roofs, or keeping woodpiles and brush away from buildings.

Dr. Tony Cheng, director of the Colorado Forest Restoration Institute, says it's important to remember that fires are a part of the forest ecosystem.

"Whether or not we continue to build and live in the mountains just isn't the question. I think people are always going to want to do that. It then becomes, 'Well, how do we do that the way that minimizes the impacts?'"

Just last week the U.S. Forest Service directed supervisors on federal forest lands to temporarily suspend its policy of letting small fires keep burning in isolated areas. Because scientists view fires as a natural part of forest regeneration, the policy had been to let fires burn if they start naturally and are not a threat to houses or other property.

Sloan Shoemaker, executive director of the Wilderness Workshop, a conservation watchdog group, says living in some forest areas is a calculated risk and says there's a term for it.

"The 'stupid zone.' People choosing to live in forests that must burn. They evolved to burn. It's only a matter of when, not if."

And Tony Cheng cautions that forests aren't like rivers, with a predictable course.

"Fires can occur just about anywhere and we don't know where the point of initiation is going to be. We don't know how it's going to spread. It's all going to be very weather-dependent."

Wildfires that burn or threaten to burn buildings and other structures are known as Wildland-Urban Interface Fires.




get more stories like this via email

Some tenants' advocates would like Virginia's new budget proposal for American Rescue Plan funding to include money for low-income renters to hire lawyers for eviction cases. (Adobe stock)

Social Issues

RICHMOND, Va. - Virginia's General Assembly Special Session begins today to budget more than $4 billion in federal COVID relief funds, and advocates …


Social Issues

ROSLINDALE, Mass. - A new report finds Massachusetts residents would rather repair electronic devices than send them to landfills, but manufacturers …

Social Issues

DENVER-During the COVID health emergency, the federal government made school meals available for free to all students, regardless of their financial …


The Blackfeet Reservation is one of seven tribal reservations in Montana. (Kushnirov Avraham/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

HELENA, Mont. - COVID-19 is underscoring the importance of ensuring that people's estates are in order, but estate planning can be be tricky for …

Social Issues

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - Pandemic fallout still has U.S. states clawing their way back to normalcy, and New Mexico believes its decision to provide more …

In a new poll, 64% of New Hampshire voters said they think capital gains should be taxed at the same rate as income from wages; 56% support increasing the corporate tax rate to 28%. (Vitalii Vodolazskyi/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

CONCORD, N.H. - New polling finds many New Hampshire voters think it's important that wealthy individuals and corporations pay what's described as …

Social Issues

AMARILLO, Texas - The American Farm Bureau Federation hosts more than 100 college level chapters across 35 states, but this is the first time its …

Social Issues

ELIZABETH CITY, N.C. - As activists mark more than 100 days of protest since the April 21 death of Andrew Brown Junior - killed outside his Elizabeth …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright © 2021