Gateway Gazette

Grants to help keep communities safe from wildfire

The Alberta government is providing $500,000 in community grant funding to help protect people and property from the threat of wildfires.

FireSmart work can include creating firebreaks for nearby communities. This block is 'greening up' after being cut in 2012.
FireSmart work can include creating firebreaks for nearby communities. This block is ‘greening up’ after being cut in 2012.

“The FireSmart Community Grant program supports proactive wildfire management actions at the local level. These grants reaffirm our commitment to help communities reduce their vulnerability to wildfire.”

~ Robin Campbell, Minister of Environment and Sustainable Resource Development

Applications are being accepted for projects that help communities reduce their risk of loss from wildfire. Municipalities, municipal districts, counties, Métis Settlements and registered non-profit societies located within the Forest Protection Area are eligible to apply for FireSmart community grants to a maximum of $100,000 per community.

Grant funding available for FireSmart Community Grants has doubled this year compared to previous years. Dollars can be used to support FireSmart planning, public education, on-the-ground FireSmart initiatives like forest thinning, emergency planning and other eligible projects.

Over the past 10 years, more than $4 million in FireSmart grant funding has been provided to Alberta communities.

Applications are being accepted until October 8, 2014.

Funding for the FireSmart Community Grant program is in addition to new Alberta government funding this year for work to reduce wildfire risks to people and communities in forested areas. Of the $31 million directed to wildfire safety initiatives, approximately one-third is for FireSmart programs.

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