By Lars Larson
Mind if I talk about that 747 firefighting plane again?
15 years I’ve been singing the praises of planet earth’s single biggest, fastest and cheapest firefighting tool: the Global Supertanker. The U.S. Forest service has refused to explain why it refuses to use the plane that finally fought fires on American soil this summer in Northern California.
Now we know why.
The Government Accountability office investigated why the Forest Service deliberately wrote its contracts so that the Supertanker could not be hired. The supertanker carries four times the retardant carried by the planes the forest service uses. The Forest Service claims that it has a philosophy of putting out fires early when they’re small. Check that lie against the Chetco Bar fire this summer, identified at a quarter of an acre, the forest service let it burn for a month till it got so big it couldn’t be put out and became the biggest forest fire in America.
Here’s what the GAO concluded, quote “the majority of the agency’s arguments are based upon anecdotal evidence and not supported by the record.” The GAO told the forest service to change its criteria and pay back the supertanker company for the cost of fighting the forest bureaucracy.
Turns out the swamp can be drained.