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Douglas Electric Cooperative Receives Over $9 Million to Boost Wildfire Prevention and Mitigation Efforts

March 27, 2023
The funding will enable DEC to reduce the fuel buildup in the utility right-of-way, increase forest health, and minimize the probability that the transmission and distribution system may be the origin or contributing source of a fire.

Douglas Electric Cooperative (DEC) has been awarded $9,151,505 in funding to enhance its fuel treatments, vegetation management, and other mitigation efforts in high-risk wildfire areas. The funding will enable DEC to reduce the fuel buildup in the utility right-of-way, increase forest health, and minimize the probability that the transmission and distribution system may be the origin or contributing source of a fire.

DEC has been working to reduce the risk of wildfires in its service area, covering 2200 square miles, for many years. With this new funding, DEC will be able to accelerate and expand its efforts, addressing hazard trees not in the traditional utility space while reducing the vegetation management program to a 3-to-4-year cycle. The project will cover 1,275 miles of power lines and enhance the utility right-of-way's ability to function as fire breaks. This will help protect the local communities, homes, and businesses that rely on DEC's power supply.

"We are grateful for this funding, which will enable us to continue our ongoing efforts to reduce wildfire risk in our service area," said Keith Brooks, General Manager of DEC. "Wildfire prevention and mitigation is a top priority for us, and we are committed to working with our community partners to keep our members safe and secure." DEC's efforts to reduce wildfire risk are essential, given the increasing threat of wildfires in the Pacific Northwest. This funding will help ensure that DEC is well-prepared to meet this challenge and continue to provide reliable power to its members.

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