City of Fernie Receives CBT Fuel Management Grant

The City of Fernie has been awarded $127,000 in funding through the Columbia Basin Trust Economic Recovery Initiative.

The project, developed by Fernie Fire and Emergency Services will employ eight people for the length of the project and create “shaded fuel brakes” in the community. One on 4.2 hectares near St. Margaret’s Cemetery, and one on 1.6 hectares near Mount Fernie Provincial Park.

The fuel management program planned for these areas will improve public safety, fire suppression capabilities, and support improved wildlife habitat and biodiversity. Both areas were identified as high priorities for fuel treatment in the City of Fernie Wildfire Protection Plan Update. Work is planned to begin this fall.

Mayor Qualizza says, “This is wonderful news, especially as we face a Provincial State of Emergency this wildfire season. I want to congratulate Chief Ruiter, the team, and recognize the community champions that have helped advance the FireSmart program locally for over six years now.“

Chief Ruiter says, “We want to thank the Province and the Trust for funding this important project. This fuel management initiative is an excellent addition to our FireSmart program, helps protect our community, and provides valuable local employment.”

Fernie has 15 neighborhoods that are either officially recognized or pursuing recognition as FireSmart Communities.

To learn more about this program and how to FireSmart your own property, visit firesmartcanada.ca or contact ferniefiresmart@fernie.ca.