I'm proud to serve on the board of Oregon Saves, a new program that will allow the one million Oregonians without access to an employer sponsored plan to save for retirement. This is a wonderful opportunity for workers across the state to build a nest egg.
Dealing with smoke and fire requires that we understand and implement science – based forest management practices. As the Mail Tribune states, this will require an investment of significant public funding. As a result, we're going to have to think carefully about where to invest those dollars, and the areas directly adjacent to our communities should be the first priority.
Despite the huge snow load we had last winter, our fire season was two months longer than usual. There is indisputable evidence that climate change is feeding forest fire patterns. A thoughtful approach to smoke and fire has to incorporate climate change policy, scientifically-based forest management practices, examination of our fire fighting capacity, enforcement of good logging practices on private lands, and support for communities experiencing economic impacts.
It would be great to think we can solve smoke and fire with one grand gesture. But that's not the case. Instead, it's going to require all of us understanding that we have to work this issue on multiple fronts to keep our communities safe, and to minimize long-term impacts.