Heed the Forestry Commission#039;s fire warning locally

Published 12:00 am Saturday, March 27, 2004

Protecting Alabama’s rural areas from wildfire is the number one priority of the Alabama Forestry Commission. Wildfires burn thousands of acres of forestland in our state every year. But through efforts of the Forestry Commission, volunteer fire departments and other cooperators, those wildfires are decreasing. The average size wildfire has steadily decreased during the most recent l0-year period.

Fire prevention is an important aspect of Forestry Commission operations. A good fire prevention program makes citizens aware of fire hazards and leads to a reduction in the number of wildfires in the state. A part of fire prevention is the wildfire investigation/enforcement program.

Forestlands cover over 70-percent of Alabama and is second in size only to Georgia.

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It goes without saying how important this industry has been to Butler County's economy over the years.

Any evidence needed can simply be found

in Chapman at International Paper.

Today, Alabama’s forests are growing more trees than ever. These forests support 70,000 people that are directly employed with forest-based companies and 100,000 people that are indirectly dependent upon the forest industry.

Alabama ranks forth in the nation for its incredible biological diversity. Alabama has more species of fish, mussels, snails, and crayfish than any other state. There are more than 800 species of vertebrate animals and 3,400 plant species in the state.

To obtain a Burn Permit or report a wildfire for Butler County call 1-800-392-5679.

If you are denied, hold no hard feelings.

They are saving money, forestlands and maybe even a life.