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Wildfires in the US cost more than $2bn
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Wildfires in the US cost more than $2bn

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The cost of firefighting has reached record levels as drought and a longer fire season take their toll.
The cost of firefighting has reached record levels as drought and a longer fire season take their toll.

Wildfires have cost more than $2bn in the US so far this year, setting a record.

US secretary of agriculture Sonny Perdue confirmed the Forest Service has spent the money battling fires in the west, Pacific northwest, and northern Rockies regions this summer.

Continuous fire activity and a longer fire season have driven up the cost of firefighting. In 2017, there were three times more uncontained large fires at the peak than the five-year average.

The Forest Service was at its highest level of alert for more than a month to 14 September. Approximately 2.2m acres of forest and surrounding land burned in that time.

Crops, livestock and fencing were destroyed, along with the livelihoods of many rural dwellers.

Over 800,000 acres have burned in the state of Montana but fires are currently burning in Washington, California, Oregon and Idaho.

Read more

Air Corps wildfire helicopter cost €46,000

Legal query: burning of land

Young ranching couple killed trying to save cattle from US wildfires

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