Wildfire NOTD subscriber John Keeley, a Research Ecologist with USGS Western Ecological Research Center, sent along a new study he co-authored on the interaction between climate change and wildfires on vegetation shifts in Southern California's Santa Rosa Mountains (1). A pair of wildfires may have been deliberately set near Yuma, Arizona (2); but Colorado Forest Service is the target of no less than nine lawsuits over losses incurred in the recent Lower North Fork Fire which began as a controlled burn (3). Firefighters at the Texas Lone Star Incident Management Team's command post in Merkel remarked on the quieter fire season this year as opposed to last year's frantic pace due to numerous wildfires across the region (4); while US Forest Service conducted a 161-acre controlled burn in Pennsylvania's Allegheny National Forest (5); and a pair of wildfires burned 130 acres in Massachusetts yesterday as well (6). Officials in East Windsor, New Jersey, applauded firefighters who have fought several wildfires in the area (7); but the state has been buffeted by 472 wildfires that have burned 1,335 acres since the first of the year, a six-fold increase from last year (8). At the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee hearing in Washington DC yesterday, Rhode Island's Sen. Jack Reed urged US Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell to be ready to fight wildfires in his state (9); while the slippery slope of fighting wildfires on federally protected land is addressed in an article from Allegheny County, Virginia (10). Construction has begun on an $8.5 million state-of-the-art flight simulation facility for CL-415 air-tanker pilots in Ontario, Canada (11). Over 100 wildfires blazed across Russia's Siberia, scorching 8,600 ha and destroying dozens of structures (12); the current emergency prompting the First Deputy Prime Minister to remind governors and other regional officials that fire preparations were their responsibility (13). Firefighters in China are battling a blaze burning in Inner Mongolia's Greater Hinggan Mountains (14); and a 500-acre wildfire was reported in Tirumala, India (15). An elderly man has been arrested in connection with several arson bushfires that have cropped up around Nelson, New Zealand, over the past few weeks (16). Farmers in Western Australia are annoyed that Western Power wants them to inspect utility poles to reduce the bushfire danger in the area (17); while a court case on the ultramarathon run in Kimberley last year which resulted in runners being severely burned in a bushfire has entered its public hearings phase (18). And finally, a bushfire survivor is on her way to becoming Australia's representative at the 2012 World Para Equestrian Driving Championships in Breda, Holland!
(1) A Plant Distribution Shift: Temperature, Drought or Past Disturbance?
(2) Wildfire near 4E
(3) Colorado Forest Service faces lawsuits over Lower North Fork Fire
(4) Low fire danger gives firefighters break in Merkel
(5) Forest Service using fire to improve timber
(6) Wildfires scorch 130 acres in Dedham, Lee
(7) EAST WINDSOR: Firefighters on top of area fires
(8) A bad spring for Smokey Bear
(9) Reed asks Forest Service to ready for RI wildfires
(10) Firefighters question federal law on fighting wildfires
(11) Orazietti announces start of construction for flight training centre
(12) Wildfires Ravage Far Eastern Villages
(13) Zubkov Warns Governors on Fire Preparation
(14) Forest Fire Breaks out in N China
(15) Tirumala forest fire engulfs 500 acres
(16) Man, 71, charged over Nelson fires
(17) Buck-passing agencies fire up farmers
(18) Govt race sponsors 'didn’t know of death'
(19) Bushfire Victim Seeks Help To Become International Athlete