June 20, 2024

Whole Community News

From Kalapuya lands in the Willamette watershed

Ecological burning to start Oct. 6 in West Eugene wetlands

2 min read
The Rivers To Ridges Partnership relies on controlled ecological burning as a restoration tool to protect valuable biological diversity in prairie and savanna ecosystems. Removal of standing dead vegetation also provides the community benefit of reducing fuels and decreasing the chances of uncontrolled wildfire at the wildland-urban interface.

from Eugene Parks and Open Space

Beginning Friday, Oct. 6 and continuing into the weekend, the City of Eugene will be coordinating with the Rivers To Ridges partnership to implement controlled ecological burns at several sites in the West Eugene wetlands.

Potential locations for ecological burning include portions of Meadowlark Prairie in the vicinity of Greenhill Road and Royal Avenue. The Fern Ridge bike path and nearby parking areas will be temporarily closed while prescribed fire operation are underway.

The burns planned at these sites are part of a much larger controlled ecological burn effort planned for Oregon conservation strategy habitats throughout the Willamette Valley in collaboration with our partner organizations.

The Rivers To Ridges Partnership relies on controlled ecological burning as a restoration tool to protect valuable biological diversity in prairie and savanna ecosystems. Removal of standing dead vegetation also provides the community benefit of reducing fuels and decreasing the chances of uncontrolled wildfire at the wildland-urban interface.

City staff and partners work hard to make sure the community is protected from potential negative impacts of fire by continually and carefully assessing weather conditions and by conducting burn operations only on days when the wind is forecast to blow smoke away from residential areas.

City Council has granted an exception to the prohibition of outdoor burning within city limits, and the Lane Regional Air Protection Agency reviews the controlled burn plans each year, issuing a permit and conditions under which burns may proceed.

Additional controlled ecological burns may be performed by Rivers To Ridges partner agencies on lands elsewhere in Lane County, including on lands owned by the Bureau of Land Management, the Nature Conservancy, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Friends of Buford Park and Mt. Pisgah, Lane County, and some private lands with conservation agreements.

Together these efforts will result in the enhancement and protection of many of the important natural areas enjoyed by the community.

For more information, including a video and a map of planned burn locations, see our ecological burning page at eugene-or.gov/prescribedfire.

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