Fire Friend or Foe

Fire is one of the most powerful forces of nature. While fire can be devastating and frightening, it is also essential for a healthy ecosystem. Is fire our friend or our foe? The answer is not simple because it all depends... Fire is linked to many other natural resources-plants, animals, water soil and trees. Fire is also linked to you. We use fire to keep warm, to cook, to build and to create ambiance. But how do we decide when fire is beneficial and when it is devastating? Much of how we feel about fire depends on our past experiences with it. When fires destroy homes and lives, denude forests and plunder watersheds, fire is catastrophic. But fire can bring renewal to a landscape. It can create grassy meadows, grow new plants, provide food for deer and elk, thin out the trees so that the forest can become resilient and healthy.

Whether you think that fire is friend or foe, it is part of your life while living in the southwest.