Since 2010, high intensity fires have burned more than 900,000 acres of Arizona forest lands. The largest in Arizona history, the Wallow Fire in the White Mountains, burned almost 539,000 acres.
Other severe recent fires included the Schultz Fire near Flagstaff, the Horsehoe 2 Fire in the Chiricahua Mountains, and the Monument Fire near Sierra Vista.
The most severe of these fires burned homes, forced evacuations, restricted recreation, forced wildlife relocations and caused damaging erosion. The economic impact to Arizona citizens and businesses counted in the millions of dollars.
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Working to Save Our Forests
Collaborative efforts are underway throughout the state to minimize the occurrence of mega-fires and improve forest health.
Forest thinning at a large scale will require innovative businesses and new technologies. Get more perspective from a Conservancy expert.
The Four Forest Restoration Initiative, modeled after the White Mountains project, will treat 1 million acres in four national forests in Arizona over the next decade. Learn more
The White Mountain Stewardship Project launched in 2004 thinned trees over 50,000 acres, using the wood products as part of a local business strategy that created 300 jobs and generated an average of $13 million in local spending each year. Learn more
Patrick Graham, the Conservancy's Arizona state director, tells a Congressional committee about Arizona's overgrown forest, and the Conservancy's work to address the problem. Read the testimony
Forest restoration in the White Mountains helped save the Eichelbergers’ home…and their hometown. Learn More
Firescape is aimed at reducing heavy fuel loads and restoring the ecological balance in the Sky Island forests of southern Arizona. Learn more
Northern Arizona's Conservation Manager Sue Sitko explains how the Wallow Fire could have been worse if not for the White Mountain Stewardship Project. Read the Q&A
Each wildlife species has its own fire survival techniques. Find out what fire means for animals in the path of the Wallow Fire. Learn more