After two wildfire-filled seasons, Oregonians got a break this summer, according to KATU.
Oregon’s fire season was the mildest since 2004 and the least expensive since 2010, according to statistics from the Northwest Interagency Coordination Center.
The Statesman Journal reports that statewide, wildfires burned just 67,795 acres this year compared to 883,405 acres a year ago. Cost also plummeted, dropping to $58 million this year compared to a record-high $530 million in 2018.
“This year was a relief,” said Dana Skelly, wildfire fuels manager for the U.S. Forest Service. “We had two really long and difficult years. It was nice to have a break.”
One reason for the lack of wildfires was that Oregon’s forests never dried out to the level of the past two years, thanks to cooler temperatures and greater humidity, especially in the mountains.
Even when wildfires ignited, “we never had a fire environment that was set up for explosive growth,” Skelly said.
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