Wildfire Management: Federal Funding and Related Statistics [February 4, 2015]   [open pdf - 399KB]

"Wildfires can have beneficial and harmful impacts on ecosystems (e.g., by reducing fuel loads, or by damaging communities and timber resources). These impacts are generally measured and discussed based on the priorities of humans in these ecosystems. Federal resources are typically deployed during wildfire season--an annual occurrence of intense wildfire activity typically running from summer into fall--to help manage wildfires and potentially minimize some of the impacts, including the loss of life and property. […] Federal funding for wildfire management is provided in the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies appropriations bill. The bill funds wildfire management at the Forest Service and the Department of the Interior, which are the two principal entities tasked with federal wildfire management. Federal wildfire response activities involve preparedness, suppression, fuel reduction, site rehabilitation, and more. More than $3.4 billion was appropriated for wildfire management in FY2015. The total wildfire management appropriations for 2014 were more than $3.9 billion and included $600 million for the Forest Service to reimburse wildfire transfers that occurred in FY2013. […] Proposals to create alternative mechanisms for funding wildfire suppression have been introduced in the 114th Congress (H.R. 167 and S. 235). […] The proposals would fund wildfire suppression for a select group of fires--theoretically the most extreme fires--by creating a new adjustment to the statutory discretionary spending limits. This report provides wildfire management appropriations data for FY2011-FY2015 and information on the President's FY2016 budget request for wildland fire management. The report also provides general wildfire management statistics (e.g., numbers of wildfires, acres burned, and firefighter personnel)."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, R43077
Public Domain
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