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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT NEWS RELEASE
 
Release Date: 12/02/13
Contacts: Doug Paul, BLM Fire Mitigation and Education Specialist, (970) 623-6183 Mike Lockwood, Fire Chief, Plateau Valley FPD, (970) 201-8797    
  Andy Martsolf, Mesa County Emergency Manager, (970) 216-2314    

BLM, Plateau Valley Fire partner to reduce wildfire risk to Town of Mesa (12-02-13)


GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. — Work to reduce the threat of wildfires to the Town of Mesa through a partnership between the Plateau Valley Fire Protection District and the Bureau of Land Management began last week and will continue through this week.
 
Crews are clearing vegetation that can be fuel for wildfires such as pinyon-juniper, sagebrush, tamarisk, Russian olive and willows from about 30 acres of the Mesa Creek drainage near Mesa, Colo.  
 
“This fuels reduction work is an important step in protecting the Town of Mesa from potential wildfires,” said Plateau Valley Fire Protection District Chief Mike Lockwood. “The Town of Mesa has had several wildfires in recent years, including one in 2007 that destroyed two homes.”
 
By reducing the risk of wildfire, the project helps protect public safety as well as firefighter safety.
 
The project fulfills priorities set by the Mesa County and Plateau Valley Community Fire Protection Plans and is being funded through a $14,000 grant from the BLM Community Assistance Program. Most of the work will be completed by the Juniper Valley Department of Corrections crew out of Rifle, Colo. 
 
“These partnerships are important for reducing the risk of wildfire in the wildand-urban interface,” said BLM Fire Mitigation and Education Specialist Doug Paul. “A recent study named Colorado as the number one state nationally for having the most property at very high risk to wildfires, and Mesa County has a number of areas with high risk.”   


The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to manage and conserve the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations under our mandate of multiple-use and sustained yield. In Fiscal Year 2013, the BLM generated $4.7 billion in receipts from public lands.
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Last updated: 12-02-2013