Wildfire prevention and water conservation are among the last topics I ever thought I’d write about. Over decades of living in Anchorage, I’ve never needed to think about wildfire prevention, other than ensuring my firewood wasn’t leaning against my house. And we’ve had so much snow and so many glaciers that conserving water was the last thing on my mind. I’m only writing about them now because I love this city and state and want it to survive and thrive. And I’m afraid.
Last summer scared the living daylights out of me. I’ve never before seen a wildfire inside the city limits here. Never had to stay inside to avoid smoke. Never seen so many fires raging so close to Anchorage. Never had to consider evacuating because a wildfire passed close to my house.
If you live in Anchorage, you know how distressing those things were. If you live elsewhere, chances are, fires may have hit you even harder. You also know that last summer was incredibly hard on Alaska’s trees.