In January 2017, the City of Santa Fe Fire Department (SFFD) led a prescribed pile burn in the Santa Fe watershed with the Forest Stewards Guild providing support. 8.5 acres of piles were burned, safely reducing hazardous fuels and thereby reducing the risk of a catastrophic wildfire to the nearby neighborhood and the City of Santa Fe. Pile burning is often part of reducing hazardous fuels and is needed to reduce the heat, intensity, and spread of a future potential
wildfire. Highly experienced and qualified firefighters executed the burn and minimized smoke impacts to the community by burning during appropriate weather windows, visually monitoring smoke and complying with the New Mexico Air Quality Bureau smoke management guidelines. There were minimal to no smoke impacts to the Upper Canyon Road community and surrounding areas.
The community was notified prior to the burn via phone calls, signage and a press release, and expressed their support for this work. The SFFD will complete 1-2 more burns in the area this winter, weather dependent. This work is part of the Fire Department’s mission to reduce risk to lives and property from wildfire. This pile burn is one of many actions that are coordinated by the Greater Santa Fe Fireshed Coalition. The Coalition, comprised of organizations and individuals, are working to improve the ecological condition and resilience of the Greater Santa Fe Fireshed. The Fireshed is a 107,000 acre area critical to the well being of Santa Fe and surrounding areas. To learn more, visit: www.santafefireshed.org.