The Natural Resources Defense Council has released a new report about the health hazard wildfire smoke poses to 212 million Americans (1). In San Diego County, California, SDG&E's network of 144 weather stations aim to reduce the danger of wind-driven wildfires (2); while a pair of wildfires in Santa Cruz County slowed southbound traffic on Highway 17 (3); California's controversial fire fee was a topic of discussion in Santa Cruz County, where rural residents received this year's bill (4); but at least property owners in the vicinity of the Rim Fire will be able to get federal help from the Environmental Quality Incentives Program to better prepare for future wildfires (5). Wildfire NOTD subscriber Tony Morris, Communications Director at Wildfire Research Network
, sent along the announcement that the US Forest Service is planning an air-tanker and water scooper forum to be held in Boise, Idaho, with a cautionary note that this forum could be delayed due to scheduling conflicts with a competing conference (6); while in Wyoming, 300 acres of the Shoshone National Forest were reseeded in the Fairfield Fire burn areas (7); but firefighters in New York state plan to conduct between 300 and 400 acres worth of controlled burns in Finger Lakes National Forest (8). The European Forest Fire Information System reported two small wildfires: a 5-hectare blaze outside of Perpignan, France, and a six-hectare blaze near Santa Magdalena de Pulpis, Spain (9). Despite claims by Indonesia's government that it is making progress on reducing wildfires caused mainly by plantation clearance, environmentalists are skeptical that anything has really changed (10); while New Zealand prepared for an onslaught of bushfire smoke from Australia (11). An update on the bushfire situation in New South Wales, Australia, is provided by the next article (12); Wildfire NOTD subscriber Ty Bonnar, Vice President of Global Operations at Flexible Alternatives
, sending along a story about an Australian air-tanker pilot who crashed while fighting bushfires with the comment "PCADS will enhance aerial firefighting safety and allow air attack during high winds w/limited risk" (13); a second firefighting aircraft also being reported lost (14); a fire official doing some Q & A on how bushfires are fought (15); while fire crews were using Emergency Situation Awareness software enabled by Twitter to quickly map fire perimeters (16); a pair of eight-year-olds being apprehended after reportedly setting a fire in the Hunter Region (17); but with ideal bushfire conditions expected to extend into next week, Rural Fire Service officials warned homeowners that the danger has not yet passed (18); a Time Magazine article looking at the human cost of the bushfires (19); while insurance companies estimated that property losses exceeded $130 million so far (20); and cleaning up after the fires may be risky due to an abundance of asbestos in the rubble (21); Denmark's Australian-born Princess Mary expressing her sorrow for losses suffered by residents of New South Wales on a visit there (22); while the government was trying to fend off accusations that climate change is fueling the bushfires (23); the Environment Minister being ridiculed for citing a Wikipedia entry as justification for the government view (24). Wildfire NOTD subscriber Nathan Maddock, Communications Officer at Bushfire CRC
, sent along two links: the first to a bushfire safety booklet created with kids in mind (25); the second a link to the publisher's site of the Handbook of Disaster Policies and Institutions in an age of climate change (26). And finally, a farmer finally bought his dream plane: a TBM Avenger that had been used as a Canadian air-tanker!
(1) Wildfire smoke becoming a serious health hazard
(2) Wind Study Used to Prevent Wildfires
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Labels: air-tankers, bushfires, firefighting, forest fires, wildfire news, wildfire news of the day, wildfires