How B.C. is mobilizing for ‘challenging’ wildfire season

By Courtney Dickson
CBC News
April 29, 2024
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Wildfire season is here. Dozens of fires have already sparked in British Columbia this season — and many more are expected to ignite as spring turns to summer, and drought conditions persist. The province says it’s been preparing for this summer for months, purchasing new firefighting equipment and recruiting firefighters in advance of what’s expected to be a “challenging” season. “We’re taking action earlier than ever,” provincial Minister of Emergency Management and Climate Readiness Bowinn Ma said in a news release. …Meanwhile, the Ministry of Forests said it has upgraded its fleet of planes and helicopters, using $56 million allocated in the 2024 budget. B.C. doesn’t own aircraft, but instead contracts them out. The ministry says it has access to 40 aircraft, including airtankers, skimmers and heavy lift helicopters, on an ongoing basis. When short-term contracts are utilized during periods of greater need, they can have access to up to 100 aircraft. 

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