May 17 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. 

Houses continue to burn in Laguna Niguel as the sun goes down

From CBS Los Angeles | May 11, 2022

Fire crews are continuing to fight flames burning through homes in Laguna Niguel as the sun sets.

Firefighters battling two wildfires in Colorado

From The Lamar Ledger, by Kieran Nicholson | May 14, 2022

Firefighters on Saturday battled two wildfires in Colorado, the High Park fire in Teller County and the Ute Pass fire near Durango. The distant fires started Friday, and both involved evacuations.

Wildfire destroys homes in affluent California town

From NU Property Casualty, by Brian K. Sullivan and Brian Eckhouse | May 13, 2022

A wind-driven wildfire destroyed at least 20 homes in a wealthy town in California’s Orange County, laying bare how a historic drought has left the region under constant threat of blazes.

Utility probes cause of California fire that burned mansions

From AP News, by Marcio Sanchez and John Antczak | May 12, 2022

Southern California Edison has told state utility regulators that unspecified electrical “circuit activity” happened at about the time that a wildfire erupted near the wealthy coastal city of Laguna Niguel

Interview: The New Mexico fires are burning through ancestral land that is tied to many Coloradan families

From CPR News, by Rachel Estabrook | May 13, 2022

Just south of the Colorado-New Mexico border, the biggest wildfire in the United States has burned over 270,000 acres and is far from being extinguished.

Low winds may help crews control huge New Mexico wildfire

From KOB 4, by The Associated Press | May 15, 2022

Crews fighting the second-largest wildfire in New Mexico’s history are trying to take advantage of several days of mild winds to gain control over a fire that had charred more than 450 square miles by Sunday.

Coastal Fire cause under investigation in Laguna Niguel | Maps, evacuations

From ABC 10, by Lauren Walike, Associated Press | May 13, 2022

A wildfire that erupted Wednesday, May 11, in coastal Southern California raced through coastal bluffs of multimillion-dollar mansions, burning at least 20 homes according to fire officials

Even very recent homeowner policies leave victims of Marshall fire drastically underinsured

From The Denver Gazette, by Mark Samuelson Special | May 11, 2022

According to an April 26 report released by the Colorado Division of Insurance, 92% of homeowners are coming up short of what it costs to rebuild from the Dec. 30 fire in Louisville, Superior and unincorporated areas of Boulder County

Timber company and nonprofit team up to support wildland firefighters at risk of suicide

From| May 15, 2022

With financial help from timber giant Weyerhaeuser, the Firefighter Behavioral Health Alliance (FBHA) has set up an online behavioral health resource especially for wildland firefighters.

Study To Determine Why Some Homes Burn, Others Still Standing In Marshall Fire

From CBS Denver, by Rick Sallinger | May 12, 2022

A major study is underway into the Marshall Fire to help prepare for future disasters. One part of the research is into how some homes are still standing while others around them are gone.

Students help rebuild Almeda community

From Mail Tribune, by Tony Boom | May 15, 2022

A Phoenix-Talent Rising Academy class is making furniture for fire victims

PG&E's massive undergrounding project: a behind-the-scenes look

From KRCR, by Sam Chimenti | May 12, 2022

As California prepares for one of the driest summers on record, the horror of past Northstate fires remains fresh in people's minds.

Researchers seek participants for study on how wildfire smoke impacts pregnant women, babies

From ABC 10, by Gabriel Porras | May 13, 2022

Researchers for the project are now seeking participants who were pregnant during last year's fire season.

Lack Of Transparency On Cost Of Marshall Fire Debris Removal Frustrating Agencies In Charge, Raising Questions

From CBS Denver, by Rick Sallinger | May 13, 2022

The town of Superior’s trustees are wondering why Boulder County won’t tell them how much each part of the Marshall Fire debris removal process is going to cost, as victims of the Marshall Fire struggle to move forward.

Butte County's Population Declines for a Third Straight Year; Lowest Since 1999

From Paradise Post, by Rick Silva | May 12, 2022

According to the state Department of Finance, Butte County lost 2.44% of its population between 2021 and 2022, from 206,640 to 201,608.

Mitigating the impact of wildfires on homes is critical to improving U.S. economic outcomes

From Washington Center for Equitable Growth, by Michael Garvey | May 10, 2022

Effects of climate change including increased temperatures, drought, and hurricanes are hindering economic growth around the country by doing great damage to homes

Here Are the Wildfire Risks to Homes Across the Lower 48 States

From The New York Times, by Christopher Flavelle and Nadja Popovich | May 16, 2022

New data was used to calculate fire risk to residential and other properties. The threats are rising.

Boulder County adopts fire-resistant building regulations in response to Marshall fire

From The Denver Gazette, by Carol McKinley | May 13, 2022

Starting June 6, residents in the eastern grassland area of unincorporated Boulder County must follow new building regulations requiring them to use ignition-resistant materials before they build new homes.

Fire weather worsens as heat wave spreads across southern US this week

From CNN, by Allison Chinchar | May 15, 2022

An early season heat wave will build across the southern tier of the United States, creating "unstable conditions" for wildfires and forcing some residents to conserve power usage.

Changing Wildfire Responses Grow More Costly

From CBS Denver, by Alan Gionet | May 14, 2022

With wildfires growing in Colorado, more expensive methods of technology are being added to combat the growing danger