Wildfires

Molly Wampler, Boise State Public Radio

Thick smoke from summertime wildfires can present major health risks. Prediction models help locals prepare for poor air quality to come, but the data behind those models is not as conclusive as we might think.

 

Adrian Black / Flickr

Recent wildfires in the Stanley area got a little help from FirstNet. It was a higher frequency network created by Congress after 9-11 to ensure first responders have the service they need to communicate. A “Cell on Light Truck” was sent to the Stanley area fires to help multiple agencies talk to each other. Idaho Matters finds out more about FirstNet and how it helps in emergencies, like wildfires.

  • Reporter Roundtable Time!
  • Using FirstNet on Idaho wildfires.
  • Cutting down Bogus Basin trees.

Wildfires are a common part of life in our region. According to new research, they can also give scientists valuable information about the climate effects of another potential disaster: nuclear war.

Peter Radunzel / Flickr

It’s time for our Reporter Roundtable, where we get you up to date on all the news that made headlines around our region. Joining us this week are Kevin Richert of Idaho Ed News, Mike Sharp of KIVI Six On Your Side Television and Seth Ogilvie of Idaho Public Televison.

Ali Budner / 91.5 KRCC

It’s no secret that wildfires are getting worse in the West. They’re threatening lives, homes and ecosystems. And they are also threatening our already-precarious watersheds. It’s all becoming a vicious cycle  — especially for the drier parts of our region.

  • Reporter Roundtable.
  • Wildfires and snowmelt in the West.
  • World War II planes come to Nampa.

It’s no secret that wildfires are getting worse in the West. They’re threatening lives, homes and ecosystems. And they are also threatening our already-precarious watersheds. It’s all becoming a vicious cycle  — especially for the drier parts of our region. 

Ted S. Warren / AP Images

In Idaho, we all experience wildfire smoke during the summer. But what is the cumulative effect of this smoke on our health, and how do we know when to take action? Is it getting worse in an era of climate change? We talk with Austin Walkins from the Idaho Conservation League. The advocacy organization has a new checklist for folks to understand their risks and make a plan.

The Bureau of Land Management is proposing 11,000 miles of fuel breaks throughout our region to help combat the spread of wildfires.

Several utility companies in the West have announced they will institute power blackouts in areas with high fire risk when conditions are particularly bad. 

Joe Jaszewski, File Photo from the Idaho Statesman

The saying goes: only you can prevent wildfires. But it turns out, a few other methods are also pretty effective in curbing those seasonal menaces.

 

Inciweb

Idaho’s wet and cool start to summer has calmed some usual fears about our dangerous, dry lands. However, it may be too soon to tell how severe this year's fires may be.

 

Jennifer Peltz / AP Images

In 2017, more than 500 people came together in Boise for a summit on climate change. One thing was made clear at the end of the summit: We need more information about the specific threats posed by a warming planet in Idaho, and we need more opportunities to find regional solutions to those threats.

 

Vale BLM

Cassandra Fleckenstein is the center manager at the Vale District for the Bureau of Land Management. She's been in fire since 2006, getting started as a dispatcher right out of high school.

 


INCIWEB

A wet spring is helping tamp down wildfire predictions in much of Idaho as we head into summer.

Colorado is testing out self-driving ATVs to assist wildland firefighters at work. The state is working with Honda to test out the company’s emerging technology.    

Inciweb

The Bureau of Land Management has banned fireworks and exploding targets this summer in Idaho.

Wildfire season is around the corner in the Mountain West. Prescribed burns are just one way to reduce wildfire risk. That's because, in the right setting, they reduce built-up dry fuel in a controlled environment.

Mesa Burn Closed To Commercial Morel Pickers

Apr 29, 2019
Monica Gokey / Boise State Public Radio

Every summer, commercial mushroom pickers scour the previous summer's fire maps to find the most promising ground for morel picking. But in one of Idaho’s biggest burns, the forest will be closed to commercial picking.

Roam Yocham / Boise State Public Radio

NPR Reporter Kirk Siegler was at Storyfort in downtown Boise on Thursday, the 21st of March, 2019 to take a room of attendees behind-the-scenes of his continuing coverage of the Camp Fire aftermath in Paradise, Calif. He shared what it’s like to cover wildfires and natural disasters in a rapidly-changing climate in states including Idaho, and took questions from the audience. Boise State Public Radio was a sponsor for Storyfort, the literary portion of the annual Treefort Music Festival.


Thomas VanSelus / Flickr

Winter is when the federal government starts spending dollars to prepare for the wildfire season, but the ongoing shutdown has put some of this preparation in limbo.

Nick Mott

We’ve had a brutal fire season this year. The fires still burning across California have left more than 80 dead, and hundreds are still missing. Amidst the flames, a seemingly new trend has emerged – a two-tiered system with private firefighting resources for those who can afford them, and a system stretched thin for the rest.

Idaho Resources Battling Deadly California Fires

Nov 13, 2018
AP

Idaho is helping battle the wildfires wreaking havoc in California. Resources from the Gem State are on the front lines.


The words “record-breaking” and “unprecedented” are commonly used to describe the scale of the modern-day west’s wildfires. But a new study suggests those terms leave out some important historical context.

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