Wildfires Burning Up Cash Too
Prince George, B.C. – While the fire season of 2017 is on track to be the worst on record in B.C when it comes to hectares burned,(see previous story) it may also end up being among the most expensive.
As of yesterday, the costs for fighting the fires since April 1st of this year, had hit $309 million dollars.
BC Wildfire Service Chief Information Officer Kevin Skrepnek says it’s too early to say what the final tally might be “Without knowing how the rest of the summer is going to play out as far as a weather perspective, it’s tough to know where we are going to land in terms of costs for the Wildfire Service specifically.”
Skrepnek says some other busy seasons include 2009, which had a total of $382 million dollars spent, in 2010 the costs hit $212 million , 2014 costs reached $297 million dollars, and 2015 finished at $277 million. “We are currently on pace for a busy season, but that level of activity and total money spent will be totally commensurate to what kind of weather we are facing out there and what kind of conditions we need to address.”
The tallies don’t take into account the costs incurred by all the other agencies involved “The costs in terms of the damage that’s been done, the costs in terms of the societal disruption, things like that, at this point I doubt we are close to having those kinds of numbers at hand yet.”