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WHEREAS the threat of fire is high in drought condition;AND WHEREAS Alberta has many provincial and private campgrounds and activities such as fishing and hiking that attract a large number of visitors;AND WHEREAS Alberta Environment and local jurisdictions issue fire bans when necessary;AND WHEREAS Alberta Environment fire bans allow open fires in designated camping and recreation areas; AND WHEREAS local fire bans place a total ban on all open fires within their jurisdiction;AND WHEREAS the local municipality is the appropriate body to evaluate local conditions;AND WHEREAS the lack of consistency in the fire bans causes confusion for residents and visitors;AND WHEREAS the residents of the adjoining local municipalities will suffer the economic loss of wildfires;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the AAMDC urge the Government of Alberta to direct Alberta Environment to respect local fire bans.
Fire bans are issued to protect the environment from the devastation caused by fires to both people and property. However, when jurisdictions overlap and Alberta Environment and the municipal fire chief issue fire bans with conflicting conditions, confusion occurs. When conditions are severe enough to require a fire ban, they are severe enough so that no fire should be allowed. In this way the environment, people and property will be protected to a greater degree. To eliminate confusion, the fire bans issued by Alberta Environment and the local fire chief should be consistent.
The AAMDC currently has no resolutions in effect with respect to this matter.In the past, the AAMDC has encouraged Alberta Environment and individual member municipalities to share information on fire bans implemented by each jurisdiction, to minimize the likelihood of confusion and conflict.