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Citizens fight wildfires in Northern California …

as this article in the July 7 NY Times shows.  This is not at all surprising, as owners all have incentives to protect their property, and relatively small communities of people can work together well when needed.

One can expect to see increasing sophistication in voluntary fire-fighting and in fire prevention, particularly if limited resources and relative remoteness makes it difficult for government “ride to the rescue”.

PS:  Don’t look now, but the Western wildfire season is now 78 days longer than it was thirty years ago, as I noted on several Mises blog threads last year.  This is one of the manifestations of climate change that the Bush administration was forced to recognize – four years late – in a report released last month.

  1. TokyoTom
    July 18th, 2008 at 04:20 | #1

    Good point, that others mentioned on threads last year. The insurers help to fight fires, because that’s cheaper than paying out on their contracts, and they set their premiums based on the degree of fireproofing of the construction and lanbdscaping.

    In my view, we out to just let fires burn – except where private individuals, communities and public forests/parks – on their own budgets – make decisions to prevent and or extinguish. The $1 billion open checkbook that Congress now gives for wildfire fighting is great for agency budgets, but pays almost zero dividends (and maybe worse – by kicking the problem down the road).

  2. ghuff
    July 18th, 2008 at 03:09 | #2

    I saw on the mainstream nightly news (nbc?) that insurance companies were helping [email protected]!omg

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