Fred Durso

The hidden costs of wildfire examined in NFPA Journal

Blog Post created by Fred Durso Employee on Jan 28, 2013


!|src=|alt=Wildfire suppression|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=Wildfire suppression|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef017ee7e46157970d!The cost to fight wildfires is massive (the government spent nearly $2 billion in 2012, for example), but this figure doesn't take into account the plethora of other expenses associated with these fires, argues columnist Molly Mowery in the latest issue of +NFPA Journal.+

For instance, Mowery points to direct and indirect costs, including facility damage, evacuation aid to displaced residents, long-term rehabilitation costs to watersheds, and public health impacts. A 2009 report released by the Western Forestry Leadership Coalition examined six wildfire case studies and concluded that the total expenses were between two to 30 times greater than reported suppression costs.

"If community leaders were more aware of these impacts, there would be a compelling argument to invest in up-front mitigation solutions that increase resilience to wildfire disasters," says Mowery.


For more information on these potential solutions, learn how a community can become fire adapted, read Mowery's column, and watch the following video: