Marin County
University of California
Marin County

Wildfire risk should be considered when planning new developments

San Diego County officials want to approve construction of about 10,000 homes in areas largely labeled by CAL FIRE as posing a "very-high" fire hazard, reported Joshua Emerson Smith in the San Diego Union Tribune.

County supervisors said the subdivisions are badly needed and developers have laid out exhaustive fire-prevention blueprints. However, UC Cooperative Extension fire specialist Max Moritz said these building codes and other rules don't take into account whether a particular project should be built there at all.

“There are all these hazards that we use to guide our building and our zoning from floods to landslides, and fire is not one of them,” Moritz said.

“In the end, the taxpayer is left holding the bill for all this,” he said. “The developer may do a really good job at designing and convincing everybody that it's the right thing to do, but after they walk away, the public is left doing fuels maintenance for decades, and the public picks up the bill when there's a disaster.”

The Carr Fire burned 1,077 homes in Northern California during the summer of 2018. (Photo: Bureau of Land Management)
Posted on Monday, December 3, 2018 at 3:01 PM
Tags: Max Moritz (25), wildfire (160)
Focus Area Tags: Environment

Comments:

1.
We may already have some laws in the books to help. I am wondering, how could we take steps to mandate all California Counties to enforce CA Health and Safety Code 14875-14931? These cost recovery programs could use supporting funds in the Counties that operate a fuel reduction program with force. We need to start getting more aggressive with fuel reduction treatments.

Posted by Brian Rosa on December 5, 2018 at 8:45 AM

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