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U.S. resumes prescribed burns on National Forest lands following pause due to massive runaway fire in New Mexico

A satellite image shows a natural color view of active fire lines from the Hermits Peak and Calf Canyon fires, near Las Vegas, New Mexico, on May 11.
MAXAR TECHNOLOGIES
/
REUTERS
A satellite image shows a natural color view of active fire lines from the Hermits Peak and Calf Canyon fires, near Las Vegas, New Mexico, on May 11.

The U.S. government is resuming prescribed burning of National Forest lands across the nation to clear brush and small trees after a three-month pause to review and respond to climate change and risks of runaway wildfires.

U.S. Forest Service Chief Randy Moore said newly prescribed burns will require same-day authorization to keep pace with weather and ground conditions.

Changes also include more robust scientific analysis and on-site evaluation of potential for human error linked to fatigue or inexperience.

The agency’s prescribed burn program was put on hold in May pending evaluation in response to extreme climate conditions and a devastating government-sparked fire in New Mexico.