National Efforts Fighting NM Wildfires, Understanding the Fires & Pueblo Cannabis Agreement | 5.27.22


Manage episode 329961504 series 2616267
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Sen. Martin Heinrich talks with correspondent Laura Paskus about New Mexico’s wildfire season, what the future might hold, and the need to professionalize the country’s federal wildland firefighting workforce.

In the Gila National Forest, the Black Fire ignited on May 13—and has already grown into the state’s third largest wildfire in history. Fire behavior analyst Arthur Gonzales, with the Southwest Incident Management Team #5 talks about the conditions fueling the giant fire. "I started this business in 1995, and I’ve seen a lot of large fires,” he tells correspondent Laura Paskus. “But it is surprising, Laura. It’s surprising. And it should surprise everybody. These are unprecedented conditions.” Gonzales also talks about the fire’s footprint, the varying levels of fire severity within the perimeter, and what people might expect to happen in the Gila this summer.

The Line Opinion Panel reacts to the U.S. Forest Service’s decision to pause all prescribed burns for at least 90 days. And, a conversation about how we can learn to better manage forests to prevent major catastrophes like the Hermit’s Peak Fire. They also explore the possibilities for native tribes after two New Mexico Pueblos reached an agreement with the state to produce and sell recreational cannabis products. Plus, a larger conversation about potential for cannabis legalization at the national level.


Laura Paskus

The Line Host:

Gene Grant

Line Opinion Panelists:

Serge Martinez, professor, UNM School of Law

Dan Foley, former New Mexico state representative

Inez Russell Gomez, editorial page editor, Santa Fe New Mexican


Martin Heinrich, U.S. Senator, New Mexico

Arthur Gonzales, US Forest Service, fire behavior analyst

For More Information:

Heinrich Urges Administration to Establish Pay Rate for Federal Wildland Firefighters – Los Alamos Daily Post

With Climate Change Fueling Wildfires, Changes Needed – New Mexico Political Report

National Interagency Fire Center

US Forest Service Pauses Prescribed Burns – SF Reporter

LANL Developing Software to Better Manage Prescribed Burns – Santa Fe New Mexican

Two NM Tribes Closer to Recreational Cannabis Sales – KOB

Two Pueblos Reach Cannabis Tax Agreement – Marijuana Retail Report

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