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Province gets ready for 2019 wildfire season

KAMLOOPS, B.C. – The B.C. Government is creating more funding, programs and fire prevention strategies after two of the worst wildfire seasons to keep B.C. communities safer.

Wildfire management funding has increased by 58% to $101 million annually as part of the Budget 2019. The additional funding will help the BC Wildfire Service add to its fire response capabilities – adding more crews, enhancing aerial capacity and including innovative technology – and spending more on fire prevention activities, including a more comprehensive prescribed burning program backed by an initial $10 million shares the Government.

“We’ve taken a hard look at additional steps we can take to not only prevent wildfires, but also enhance our response on the ground during wildfire season,” said Doug Donaldson, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development. “Our base budget for wildfire spending has increased by 58%, and we’re accelerating prevention and prevention awareness programs.”

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Using new technology, such as night vision goggles will aid in early detection and response. Building stronger working relationships with communities, First Nations, the forest industry and other stakeholders are important advances shares the Government.

The changes support the recommendations of the independent Abbott-Chapman report.