June 14 Digest: This Week in Wildfire Recovery News

This is a digest of selected news and media that emerged over the last week related to wildfire emergencies, recovery efforts, and resilience building efforts in the American West. 

Biden says FEMA will cover 100% of wildfire recovery costs during trip to New Mexico

From CBS News, by Arden Farhi | June 11, 2022

Biden authorized the federal government to cover all of the costs related to "debris removal and emergency protective measures for 90 days undertaken by the State of New Mexico as a result of the wildfires and straight-line winds" and a bill in Congress could go further to provide assistance

New Mexico residents sue for information on massive wildfire

From AP News | June 10, 2022

Dozens of residents in a small New Mexico community impacted by massive wildfires that merged in April are suing the U.S. Forest Service over what they called a failure to provide information about the government’s role in starting the blazes.

Damage Estimates Climb from Massive New Mexico Wildfire

From Claims Journal, by Susan Montoya Bryan | June 9, 2022

New Mexico's governor states that that the destruction caused by the largest wildfire burning in the U.S. has been devastating for thousands of residents and their lives have been forever disrupted and altered

Crowning fury: New Mexico wildfire reignites long-standing tensions

From Las Cruces Sun News, by Alicia Inez Guzmán | June 9, 2022

Anger toward the Forest Service has been smoldering for a century. Raging wildfires brought it roaring to life.

PG&E pleads not guilty in deadly 2020 California wildfire

From Fox 11 Los Angeles, by Associated Press | June 11, 2022

Pacific Gas & Electric on Thursday pleaded not guilty to involuntary manslaughter and other charges it faces after its equipment sparked a wildfire that killed four people and destroyed hundreds of homes in Northern California two years ago

Multiple fires near Grapevine north of Los Angeles

From Wildfire Today, by Bill Gabbert | June 11, 2022

Summary and update of the recent wildfire activity near Interstate 5 in the Grapevine area north of Los Angeles

What it really means for a wildfire to be ‘contained’

From Popular Science, by Philip Kiefer | June 10, 2022

Popular Science spoke to Sean Triplett, the tools and technology lead at the National Interagency Fire Center, which coordinates wildfire responses across the country, to break down the key statistic in what constitutes a fire being "contained"

Federal firefighters are waiting for pay raises they hope will help fill their ranks

From npr, by Ximena Bustillo | June 11, 2022

As the fire season appraoches U.S. Forest Service faces more retention and recruitment issues that have resulted in a depleted workforce while fire seasons worsen and the Biden administration is increasing pressure to reduce wildfire risks across the West.

Verizon Preps for 2022 Wildfire Season

From tvtech, by George Winslow | June 10, 2022

Verizon has been running emergency drills, testing fiber and cell site readiness, and ensuring recovery equipment is in place; drones are also part of the backup plans

How to Plan Summer Adventures in the Era of the Megafire

From Outside, by Wes Siler | June 9, 2022

Everything you need to know about how the burning West will affect your summer

Marshall Fire Aftermath | The Road To Rebuilding

From Unknown Overland | June 11, 2022

It's been a lot of time yet no time at all, from the first days we were allowed to go back to the moment when we can finally start rebuilding. A lot of work done clearing debris, scraping, removing what was. But now the land is ready again to start rebuilding a neighborhood.

Town of Paradise sees housing boom after catastrophic 2018 Camp Fire

From KTVY FOX 2 News, by Tom Vacar | June 14, 2022

The town of Paradise is in the midst of a building boom, now 4 1/2 years post disaster. 1,400 homes have already been rebuilt. Currently, there are some 150 listings for lots and finished houses at very affordable prices, attracting buyers from all over the state.

After the Marshall fire, firefighters across Colorado worry about a similar disaster in their communities

From CPR News, by Miguel Otárola | June 10, 2022

Inside the Poudre Fire Authority headquarters in Fort Collins on Thursday, two dozen firefighters and first responders put aside the prepared prompts and spoke frankly about what it’s like to do their jobs in 2022.

Artificial intelligence developed by NCAR will identify forests with high fire risks

From abc 7 Denver, by Rob Harris | June 10, 2022

Artificial intelligence developed at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder is allowing scientists to identify the locations and amounts of dead or dying trees and vegetation in Colorado forests, which burn quickly and, therefore, cause wildfires to spread faster.

Southern California preparing for 'hotter, drier' wildfire season amid workforce shortages

From CNN, by Stephanie Elam | June 10, 2022

As the extended drought has left vegetation dry, brittle and ripe for burning, fire officials in Southern California are bracing for another challenging summer and fall of wildfires amid a shortage of firefighting crews and increased workloads.

Firefighters Share Dire Wildfire Outlook for LA County

From NBC Los Angeles, by Jonathan Lloyd | June 9, 2022

Fuel moisture levels, an important factor in the spread of wildfires, are at historic lows in parts of Southern California as the region enters the hot and dry summer months.

Report: PG&E delays and safety failures sparked Dixie Fire

From abc 10 | June 10, 2022

A summary on how PG&E's failure to take precautions regarding trees on their power lines and dried brush led to the destruction of the Dixie Fire