Governor Mike Dunleavy has introduced an Executive Order that would change the name of the Alaska Division of Forestry to the Alaska Division of Forestry and Fire Protection.
Division Director Helge Eng states, “The Division’s current name no longer represents the full range of its responsibilities and priorities.” The proposed name change “clearly reflects the public safety fire suppression responsibilities of the Division, as well as its forestry duties,” he said.
Barring opposition from the Alaska Legislature, the name change will take effect July 1, 2022. The Executive Order was read across the legislative floor on the opening day of the 2022 legislative session in Juneau on Tuesday. Alaska and the nation now face more intense and longer fire seasons due to increasingly hot and dry summers and forest insect and disease outbreaks.