Wildfire

Local News
5:10 pm
Thu July 3, 2014

Fireworks Banned, Sort Of

Credit Billy Wilson Photography via Flickr

Some New Mexicans can legally light their fireworks this Independence Day.

There is no statewide ban on fireworks but nearly all New Mexico counties have banned them in unincorporated areas this year because of extra dry weather.  For many counties, the ban went into effect weeks ago.

In Bernalillo County, Fire Marshal Chris Gober will be working this 4th of July and he said fireworks make his job harder.

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KUNM Call In Show
10:35 am
Tue June 24, 2014

Fireproofing Our Forests

Credit Ed Suominen via Flickr / Creative Commons License

Can we make our forests fireproof? Do we want to? Recent large, devastating fires in New Mexico have swept away livelihoods, and threatened and destroyed watersheds and animal habitats. The U.S. Forest Service has undertaken projects to thin forests through prescribed burns and the removal of hazardous fuels...but to what effect?  We'll talk with residents, activists, the Forest Service - and YOU! - about how - and if - the needs and desires of stakeholders (human and animal) can be balanced in this time of drought and high fire danger.

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Local News
8:09 am
Tue August 7, 2012

At 68, Smokey Bear's message still resonates

Dr. Ed Smith and Smokey Bear in 1950. Briefly named “Hotfoot Teddy” this five-pound bear with burned paws was found clinging to a charred tree during a fire in the Lincoln National Forest. He became the "living symbol" of Smokey Bear.
New Mexico State Forestry Division / NMEMRD

This week, an American icon celebrates his birthday: Smokey Bear is turning 68.

He’s still a spry old guy, kept alive by the Ad Council and the US Forest Service. It’s New Mexico’s forests that have been taking a hammering. In 2011, the Las Conchas Fire was the largest in state history. Then this year, the Whitewater-Baldy Fire in the Gila National Forest doubled its record. This summer also saw the state’s most destructive wildfire, the Little Bear Fire near Ruidoso.

But believe it or not, there’s good news.

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Local News
9:23 am
Wed July 25, 2012

Signs of life in the Gila National Forest

Sprouting seeds between two downed trees.
USDA, Gila National Forest

Even after the flames have died down, the impacts of a wildfire persist. Without tree and grass roots to absorb rainfall and hold soil in place, flooding can be a big problem.

In the wake of the Whitewater-Baldy Fire—which burned almost 300,000 acres in southwestern New Mexico—officials in the Gila National Forest have been working to get ahead of the summer rains and next year’s snowmelt.

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Fronteras
10:07 am
Wed November 30, 2011

Can Grazing Reduce the Risk of Wildfires?

Photo via www.flickr.com by JelleS

Researchers and ranchers are studying whether cattle grazing could significantly reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfires in rugged areas of the southwest.  As Laurel Morales reports from the Fronteras Changing America Desk, firefighters had the toughest time fighting recent record-setting fires in steep terrain where dry grasses and other fuels had built up.