"Clearing the Smoke from Wildfire Policy: An Economic Perspective." @deanlueck & Jonathan Yoder. @perctweets.
(Photo: Aftermath of the tragic Mann Gulch Fire, 1949)
"Clearing the Smoke from Wildfire Policy: An Economic Perspective." @deanlueck and Jonathan Yoder. @perc. Property and Environment Research Center.
"The Mann Gulch fire was a #wildfire reported on August 5, 1949 in a gulch located along the upper Missouri River in the Gates of the Mountains Wilderness, Helena National Forest, in the state of Montana in the United States. A team of 15 smokejumpers parachuted into the area on the afternoon of August 5, 1949 to fight the fire, rendezvousing with a former smokejumper who was employed as a fire guard at the nearby campground. As the team approached the fire to begin fighting it, unexpected high winds caused the fire to suddenly expand, cutting off the men's route and forcing them back uphill. During the next few minutes, a "blow-up" of the fire covered 3,000 acres (1,200 ha) in ten minutes, claiming the lives of 13 firefighters, including 12 of the smokejumpers. Only three of the smokejumpers survived. The fire would continue for five more days before being controlled…”
"Wildfires are heating up once again in the American West. In 2015, wildfires burned more than 10 million acres in the United States at a cost of $2.1 billion in federal expenditures. As the fires burned, the U.S. Forest Service announced that, for the first time, more than half of its budget would be devoted to wildfire. And the situation is likely to get worse. Within a decade, the agency estimates that it will spend more than two-thirds of its budget battling fires.
In this PERC Policy Series essay, Dean Lueck and Jonathan Yoder use economics to examine wildfire management and the current wildfire policy debate. As leading scholars in the area of wildfire policy, they provide an economic framework for evaluating effective wildfire management and use it to confront current wildfire policy issues. The authors address several important questions: Are wildfires really getting larger and more frequent? How can the efficiency of wildfire policies and management be evaluated? Do wildfire organizations and their incentives matter? And are proposed policy reforms likely to improve the effectiveness of wildfire management?..."