Officials are anticipating Oregon's fire season this year will be worse than the last. U.S. Representative Peter DeFazio was briefed by the forest service this week while in the state for his July 4 recess.
DeFazio says that fire danger is one of his chief concerns. He explains low moisture and rising temperatures are altering the forest ecosystems around Oregon:
“Fires are not natural at this intensity. this is not a natural condition, and these fires, many of them burn at intensities where you're sterilizing the ground. They do need to be fought, we do need to work longer term to improve forest health.”
DeFazio pushed for western wildfires to be treated as natural disasters and funded accordingly. Starting next year a revised funding plan will help firefighting efforts, which he says is an improvement.
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