As California’s wildfire season grows longer and more devastating blazes sweep through communities, researchers say the state must overhaul its development policies and community rebuilding efforts or risk greater tragedy and loss of lives.
State development policies have encouraged communities to rebuild in fire-prone regions, leading to more potential destruction and higher reconstruction and insurance costs, UC-Berkeley researchers concluded in a report released Thursday. Researchers studied the recovery efforts in the fire-decimated communities of Santa Rosa, Paradise and Ventura.
Wildfire risks are growing: Nearly 10 percent of Californians live in high-risk fire zones, and the seven most destructive blazes on record have come since 2017. Researchers say it could cost at least $610 billion to replace homes in the high-risk zones…
“We saw that the climate crisis and the housing crisis were converging,” said Berkeley professor Karen Chapple, director of the Center for Community Innovation. “These issues need to be considered together…”
California is in a real tight spot. Just about the whole state is a fire prone area. They may have to require fire resistant construction materials and techniques. No more wood houses sitting at the top of a brushy slope.