Strategies for reducing wildfire risk around people’s homes will be displayed at three public workshops this month.
About 232,000 acres of developed land around the city of Missoula are at moderate to very high risk of wildfire, according to the Lolo National Forest’s 2016 risk assessment and Missoula County’s 2018 Community Wildfire Protection Plan. The “Learning Labs” will bring together fire scientists, firefighters and land managers to answer questions about living in fire-adapted ecosystems, improving forest health, and ensuring safety for community members and first responders, according to a news release.
“The Learning Labs are designed to be two-way learning opportunities for both us, our partners and the public,” said Missoula District Ranger Jennifer Hensiek in the release. “At the Learning Labs we are diving deeper into topics such as wildfire risk, trends, and wildfire modeling. Through these sessions, we are interested in hearing what the public knows and what they think.”
The meetings take place:
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• Thursday, July 11 — Missoula Rural District Fire Station 2 (6550 U.S. Highway 10 W., Missoula) from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
• Tuesday, July 23 — Pattee Canyon Picnic Area, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Wear attire suitable for standing outdoors. The site visit offers a chance to see an ongoing forest treatment project that aims to reduce the canyon’s vulnerability to fire. Forest Service staff will describe the work and its impact, as well as answer questions.
• Wednesday, July 3 — Missoula Rural District Fire Station 1 (2521 South Ave. W., Missoula) from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.