County made right call with summer burn ban

Print Article

The heavy smoke clouding the air from several regional wildfires is a reminder of how dry the Columbia Basin and the surrounding area truly is. The shrub-steppe habitat of Eastern Washington, with its thick and bountiful sagebrush, is well known for its desert-like environment. Dry conditions are the norm around here. The driest part of the state is found here in the Columbia Basin, which only receives 5-10 inches of rain annually, according to information provided by the state Department of Ecology.

Given the tinderbox conditions, Tuesday’s decision by the Grant County Commissioners to approve an annual summerwide burn ban was wise. The ban is now in effect and limits burning from June 1 through Sept. 30. The burning of yard waste and scrubland are most affected, according to an article in Wednesday’s Herald. State restrictions already exist to cover agricultural burning.

The burn ban was initially proposed to last from June 15 through Aug. 31, but was lengthened to better fit the current fire season. We are glad the timeline was modified and agree the change was much needed. Why risk more smoky days and cloudy skies?

Commissioners listened to a recommendation from area fire officials who were in favor of the lengthened ban and heightened caution.

For most of this week, the air quality has been so poor that many of us curtailed our activities and stayed inside. School children were kept inside from recess and people with certain health conditions were advised to avoid going outdoors. Around town, some workers could be found wearing masks to keep from inhaling the smoke-filled air.

It’s too bad the smoke was so thick because people and animals benefit greatly from sunshine, fresh air and exercise.

The skies are supposed to clear up by Friday. We look forward to cleaner air and a brighter sun. Thank you to the fire officials who recommended a longer burn ban and commissioners who approved it. Being proactive is always the best approach.

— Editorial Board

Print Article

Read More Editorial

A new County Commissioner for new perspectives and leadership

October 19, 2018 at 5:00 am | Columbia Basin Herald Grant County has been good to me. I am in a position to give back by utilizing the skills and experiences I have gained in my 42-plus-year career. Grant County needs a dedicated representative to act...

Comments

Read More

What is an assault weapon?

September 27, 2018 at 5:00 am | Columbia Basin Herald What is an assault weapon? Obviously something that does damage, regardless of whether it is a firearm, knife, rock or something else. Today, we should recognize that a person who lacks morality can ...

Comments

Read More

Know your PUD

September 27, 2018 at 5:00 am | Columbia Basin Herald There are a lot of great things about living in Grant County, and one of them is our Grant PUD. Yet we frequently don’t think about it except to grumble at having to pay one more bill every month. Su...

Comments

Read More

Electronic building permits a good move

September 20, 2018 at 5:00 am | Columbia Basin Herald The Grant County Planning Department is working to pick up the pace by processing some building permits electronically. The change won’t happen overnight, as the county is in the process of training...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(509) 765-4561
PO Box 910
Moses Lake, WA 98837

©2018 Columbia Basin Herald Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X