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Infrastructure law pumps billions into Arizona wildfire resilience projects

Pipeline Fire
Melissa Sevigny/KNAU
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The Pipeline Fire on the San Francisco Peaks was first reported June 12, 2022 and eventually burned more than 26,000 acres.

Funds from last year’s Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act could help fire managers in Arizona as wildfires continue to burn bigger and hotter.

The law includes more than $8 billion for resilience projects and will help implement a 10-year plan to fight wildfires in the state.

According to Arizona Sen. Mark Kelly's office, it’ll pump more than $60 million into the long-stalled Four Forest Restoration Initiative along with the Flagstaff Watershed Protection Project and other forest health projects on the Coconino and Tonto national forests.

The law is also designed to help reduce sediment flows following 2019’s Museum Fire near Flagstaff, benefit drought, wildfire and flood forecasting, and fund hazardous fuels reduction and watershed recovery following wildfires.

Half-a-million acres in Arizona burned during the 2022 fire season as the Flagstaff area experienced two major wildfires that burned dozens of homes.