Department of Interior invests more than $5.9 million from bipartisan Infrastructure Act to advance wildfire resilience in Nevada

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Date: Wednesday, September 21, 2022
Contact: [email protected]

LAS VEGAS, N.V. – During a visit to Las Vegas today, Undersecretary of the Interior Tommy Beaudreau announced that more than $5.9 million in fiscal year 2022 funding for the Bipartisan Security Act President Biden’s infrastructure will support fuels management projects in Nevada on 14,655 acres of land across the state. This is part of $103 million allocated by the Department of the Interior earlier this year to reduce wildfire risk, mitigate impacts and rehabilitate burned areas. The additional funding will help complete fuel treatments on nearly 2 million acres nationwide this fiscal year, a substantial increase from the previous year.

“As climate change brings harsher heat waves, more unstable weather and record-breaking drought conditions, we are seeing wildfire seasons turn into wildfire years, threatening communities, businesses, wildlife and the environment,” said Assistant Secretary Tommy Beaudreau. “Through President Biden’s bipartisan Infrastructure Act, we are investing in Nevada communities, advancing wildfire resilience work across the country, enhancing resources for the heroic firefighter workforce and reduce the risk of forest fires.”

Assistant Secretary Beaudreau made the announcement at Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, where the Bureau of Land Management is working with local partners in shared stewardship in the Spring Mountains region to reduce the risk of forest fire and improve the resilience of the watershed to forest fires.

The visit is part of a western tour the deputy secretary is doing this week to highlight how the Bipartisan Infrastructure Act and Cut Inflation Act investments are advancing wildfire resistance. and drought. The act provides much-needed support to communities across the country to increase land resilience to the threat of wildfires and to better support federal wildland firefighters.

During his visit, Deputy Secretary Beaudreau held a listening session with a group of regional interior wildland firefighters who highlighted how the Bipartisan Infrastructure Act investments are helping to increase capacity and retention of wildland firefighters. The act provides $1.5 billion for the department over the next five years to invest in preparedness, fuel management, fire restoration and fire science. This too leads major reforms for federal wildland firefighters, including temporary pay increases and a new occupational series classification more specific to firefighters.

Bipartisan Nevada Wildfire Management Infrastructure Act investments will increase fuel handling in areas with high potential for wildfire risk, helping to protect homes and businesses in the interface between the forest and public drinking water. These efforts will foster climate resilience in landscapes and communities and employ tribal members, youth and veterans.

A portion of this year’s Wildfire Resilience funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Act will be used to further develop a Wildfire Risk Mapping and Mitigation Tool, which is being developed in conjunction with the USDA Forest Service and the National Association of State Foresters. The tool will help land managers collectively identify potential wildfire risks and share planned and completed mitigation activities. The act also provides increased support for the Joint Fire Science Program, an interagency partnership with the USDA Forest Service that funds wildfire science research projects.

The Department’s recently released Five-Year Watch, Care, and Treatment Plan for Addressing Wildfire Risk set out a roadmap for achieving these goals in coordination with federal, non-federal, and tribal partners. In combination with the USDA Forest Service’s 10-Year Wildfire Crisis Strategy, these plans outline the monitoring, maintenance, and treatment strategy that agencies will use to address wildfire hazards, better serve communities and improve conditions on all types of land where wildfires can occur. .

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