Like a Pheonix Rising from the Ashes: Melding Wildfire Law into a Comprehensive Statute
Journal of Environmental Law and Litigation Vol 33, 47-86, 2018
40 Pages Posted: 14 Jul 2018
Date Written: 2018
Wildfire is becoming increasingly more common and intense throughout the United States, especially in the West where droughts and higher temperatures have literally fanned the flames. Congress struggles to appropriate enough money to both pay for management and facilitate efforts to control fires and would be defendants for negligently caused fires are beginning to face unprecedented damage claims and settlements as they deal with both federal and state law. In 2016 a bipartisan group introduced a bill that purports to solve the budgeting crisis facing the United States Forest Service, but it will likely not be enough to completely alleviate the growing management and response costs. A comprehensive command and control statute modeled on environmental statutes such as the Oil Pollution Act that allows the United States to recover damages against negligent actors would give certainty to litigation and aid the proposed legislation in alleviating the budgetary burden.
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation