The nation has run out of the funds allocated to fight wildland fires, according to a report from The Washington Post (http://wapo.st/VG3Ttq).
Amid the worst wildfire season on record, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service has run out of money to pay for firefighters, fire trucks, and aircraft that dump retardant on wildland fires.
Officials have instead taken money from other forest management programs. But many of these programs were aimed at preventing giant fires in the first place, and raiding their budgets means putting off the removal of dried brush and dead wood over vast stretches of land. The buildup of this fuel contributes to the mega-fires that are ravaging the country’s forests and wild places.
Recently, Congress stepped in and reimbursed the Forest Service and the Interior Department, which plays a far lesser role in fighting fires, with $400 million from the 2013 Continuing Resolution, allowing fire prevention work to continue.
Read more about the funding situation at http://wapo.st/VG3Ttq.