Thursday, September 10, 2015

Need to fund forest fires battles with emergency funds not working budget

Talking with a Forest Fighter, fellow elementary school dad,  I was shocked to learn that the forest fires engulfing the USA aren't running out of emergency funds, the fire cost are taken directly from the Firefighters overall working budget.

The Asymmetric risk this places the USA and it's citizens is catastrophic and not sure we even need a graphic for it.   Wired has very good description of the issue 

The agency’s total firefighting budget is around $2.52 billion, which is basically broken up into two piles. The first pile is $1.14 billion for preparedness, which involves all the agency’s pre-fire season preparation, hiring, and training. The other pile is $708 million for suppression. This is all the frontline firefighting, and pays for hand crews, smoke jumpers, engines, air tankers, helicopters, incident management teams, and so on. (Okay smarty, I know that doesn’t add up to $2.5 billion. There are two smaller piles—$303 and $362 million respectively—that deal with prevention planning and the removal of grass, brush, and other potential fuel sources.)
Active Fire Mapping Program

From the United States Department of Agriculture report  "FIRE TRANSFER IMPACT STATE* a state by state breakdown in the withering of the of these services;  Because of cuts to the overall budget from Congress and then fires burning the remainder through LIKE A FIRE. Today the USA faces a dramatic risk from fires and displacement which could include the need to relocate large populations.  So doing noting is not now only immoral it's placing the US at risk. 

" their footnote on the main title slide said it all --Impacts reported by Forest Service Regions. These do not include Region-wide impacts that occur in multiple states, nor national-level impacts. This list may not include all impacts—those that were realized later or those not reported by the Region."

What needs to be talked about is the solution.  The HEF and most leaders in the field of emergency management concur this needs to be address sooner than laters.