To Manage Wildfire, California Looks To What Tribes Have Known All Along

To combat wildfires in California, Native American tribal leaders and government officials are coming together to facilitate “cultural burnings” or controlled burns. Regularly burning the landscape prevents thick, dried out vegetation from catching fire and causing massive wildfires. Tribal groups used to perform this ritual in the 1800s, but as settlers moved West, many of them prevented Native Americans from doing these cultural burnings. While controlled burns can be challenging in places where there’s too much underbrush, these partnerships can bring together indigenous knowledge and wildfire management.

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