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WildreseasonpromptsreviewofprotectionstrategiesTuesdaySeptember23201417ENVIRONMENTWILDFIRESTheNorthwestTerritoriesTeachersAssociationisproudtosupportonbehalfofour800educatorswhopromoteliteracyeveryday.NorthwestTerritoriesTeachersAssociation501848thStreetBox2340YellowknifeNTX1A2P7PhoneFaxEmailWebsite867-873-8501867-873-2366nwttanwtta.nt.cawww.nwtta.nt.caByJACKDANYLCHUKLloydChicotdoesntneedtobesoldonthevalueofre-smartingandcommunitywild-reprotectionplans.ThechiefofKakisasawamesburnwithin100metresofthecommunitylastJulyonlytobeturnedasidebyrecrewsandareguardcutoverthelastthreeyears.TherewascrowninguntilithittheguardChicottoldTheJournal.Withoutitwewouldhavelosthouses.Theclosecallwasalessoninthebenetsofre-smartingastrategyofremovingpotentialfuelfromaroundbuildingsandcommunities.ChicotwouldlikeKakisatodomorebutafterareseasonthatcosttheterritorialgovernmentmorethan50mil-lionmoneyisscarce.ThereisnopotofmoneyMichaelMilt-enbergerministerresponsibleforEnviron-mentandNaturalResourcesENRtoldTheJournalwhenaskedaboutnancialsupportforcommunitywildreprotectionplans.ENRbegandraftingprotectionplansin2010andredoubleditseffortsafterwild-resravagedacornerofSlaveLakeAlta.in2011.Itnowhasplansfor28communitiesinveregionsfromInuviktoFortSmithandYellowknife.Aninformalsurveyofcommunitiesre-vealedthatwhilethepublichasembracedthecommonsensetenetsoftheFireSmartprogramalackofmoneyhasstalledimple-mentationofthewildreprotectionplans.HayRiverandFortProvidencegothelpfromENRtoconstructrebreaksbutinFortLiardSAORobertFirthsaidthecom-munitymustrelyonvolunteereffort.WeallwanttomakesureitgetsdonebutpeoplearebusyFirthtoldTheJournal.Maybethepastreseasonwillshoweveryonethebenetofre-smartingthecommunity.Yellowknifepublicsafetyofcialsfoundthemselvesonthehotseatthissummerafterexaggeratedmediareportsclaimedthecapi-talwasthreatenedbyaforestreburning30kmwestofthecity.Accordingthecitysprotectionplanpre-vailingwindsduringthesummerreseasonmakethecityswesternboundarylargelyin-vulnerablebutYellowknifesforestedsouth-ernankisexposed.ConstructingarebreakwouldtakeseveralyearsDennisMarchiorithecitysdirectorofpublicsafetytoldTheJournalbutthepublicdidnotidentifyitasapriorityduringbudgetconsultations.Fire-smartingthecommunitywasnotraisedduringthepublicengagementprocessMarchiorisaidandaddedthattheissuecouldcomeupduringbudgetdiscussionsthisfall.InthemeantimeMarchiorisaidheisre-viewingemergencyreprotectionplansforvulnerableneighbourhoodswithENR.PhotocourtesyofENRGNWTAhomeinKakisaiswatereddownwithsprinklersduringthesummerwhenaforestrecamewithin100metresofthecommunity.