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How are officials here keeping our forest safe?

Published: Sep. 11, 2020 at 1:29 PM CDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) - In California there are almost 8,000 fires burning up more than 3.5 million acres which is three times the size of the Black Hills.

Begging the question, how are officials here keeping our forest safe?

“So we use a combination of different programs that we can use help mitigate the hazardous fuels on the forest and that ranges from thinning to controlled burning and even our grazing program helps reduce the hazardous fuels on the forests," says Public Affairs Officer for the Black Hills National Forest Scott Jacobson.

Just this year, the forestry service has cleaned up fallen timber, tall grasses, and thinned out trees in more than 35 thousand acres in the Black Hills.

“By thinning the forest we’ve been able to, at least over the last twenty years, we’ve not seen any kind of catastrophic wildfire on our forests really since the Jasper burn of 2000," says Jacobson.

A fire that burned 85 thousand acres and the forestry service is making sure that doesn’t happen again.

“Our employees work hard to protect our forests and to manage our forests so it’s here for us to enjoy and for our future generations and our kids and grandkids," says Jacobson.

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