Over 25 FireSmart projects are underway to make Yukon communities more resilient and to defend them against wildfires.
Each year the Government of Yukon provides funding to organizations for FireSmart projects that space trees and clean underbrush in forests in and around Yukon communities. Municipal governments, First Nations governments, non-for-profit organizations and community organizations are eligible to apply for FireSmart funding.
In addition to the FireSmart program, the Government of Yukon works in collaboration with its community partners, including the City of Whitehorse, to reduce wildfire risk in Yukon with vegetation reduction initiatives such as prescribed burning. Prescribed burning is a technique used by fire professionals to maintain forest health and reduce the risk of wildfire by removing vegetation, brush and dead trees in a controlled environment.
Property owners can also help make their communities safer by using FireSmart principles on their property to protect against wildfire, such as stacking wood and other combustibles away from houses and buildings. Yukoners can also safely thin and space out trees on their property, remove flammable shrubs and trees and install fire-safe building materials in their homes.
Preventative measures are key to protecting our communities. The Government of Yukon’s FireSmart program supports efforts to reduce the risk of wildfire across the territory, and we thank the many organizations that contribute to FireSmart activities throughout the year.
Minister of Community Services John Streicker
The Government of Yukon FireSmart program has been funding forest fuel reduction treatments throughout the territory since 1998. The program was created to fund community based projects to reduce the risk of wildfires and protect Yukon communities.
Over the last 20 years, the Government of Yukon has invested approximately $20 million in FireSmart projects.
The City of Whitehorse uses its own funds for FireSmart initiatives. The Government of Yukon and the City of Whitehorse work in collaboration on other vegetation reduction initiatives outside of the FireSmart program, including prescribed burning in the spring and fall.
FireSmart Canada is a federal organization that aims to prevent the negative impacts wildfires can have through providing community, private and public FireSmart information and initiatives.
Funding is given based on several criteria including how effective the treatment is in reducing wildfire risk, the number of people the project impacts, the geographical distribution of funds throughout the territory and the value for cost of a project.
FireSmart projects being funded in 2018–19:
- Village of Teslin - $25,000
- Teslin Tlingit Council - $40,000
- Tagish Volunteer Fire Department Society - $30,000
- Carcross Tagish First Nations $25,000
- South McClintock Community Association - $35,000
- Lorne Mountain Community Association - $35,000
- Wolf Creek Community Association - $40,000
- McLean Lake Residents Association - $55,000
- Kwanlin Dun First Nations - $35,000
- Biathlon Yukon - $5,500
- Riverdale Community Association - $54,960
- Ta’an Kwach’an Council - $30,000
- Porter Creek Community Association - $37,300
- Hidden Valley School Council- $25,000
- Ibex Volunteer Fire Department - $20,000
- Champagne Aishihik First Nations - $25,000
- Village of Haines Junction - $35,000
- Kluane First Nations - $20,000
- White River First Nations - $20,000
- Village of Carmacks - $25,000
- Little Salmon Carmacks First Nations - $20,000
- Town of Faro - $25,000
- Watson Lake Outdoor Club – $30,000
- Watson Lake Volunteer Fire Fighters Association - $30,000
- Liard First Nation - $60,000
- Tr’ondek Hwech’in - $30,000
- Pine Ridge Communication Association - $35,000