The Anchorage Assembly is considering a resolution aimed at reducing the health impacts of wildfires in Alaska.
The resolution, drafted by assemblyman Fred Dyson, requests that public lands managers take action to prevent, limit and mitigate wildfires that have significant health impacts on the community, and requests that managers consider not allowing some fires to burn themselves out if the smoke could cause significant health harm and impacts to transportation and transmission networks.
"One doctor said, who treats pulmonary related things, half her patients were in the hospital, and I know I have neighbors here who have heart conditions and so on. Doctors told them to stay inside," Dyson said.
The assembly does not have authority over the Division of Forestry or any other agency that plays a role in the decision making process of how a wildfire is managed and the resolution doesn't create any legal changes. Instead, if adopted, it is a formal sign from the assembly in support of the idea.