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News Release

NRCS Offers Assistance for Fuel Breaks

Tim Ouellette

NRCS Offers Assistance for Fuel Breaks in Three Western Montana Counties

Bozeman, Mont., July 16, 2012 - The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is offering technical and financial assistance to landowners in three western Montana counties to install fuel breaks. Private forest landowners in Jefferson, Lewis and Clark, and Powell counties can apply for funding through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program.

“Although wildfires have already impacted several parts of Montana, it is never too soon to prepare for the next wildfire,” said Joyce Swartzendruber, NRCS state conservationist for Montana “While we have offered fuel break assistance for several years, we want to make the offer again while wildfires are at the forefront.”

A fuel break is a strip or block of land from which the vegetation and debris have been reduced to diminish the potential spread of wildfire across that strip. Removing hazardous fuels, such as trees killed from pine beetles, reduces wildfire potential and improves forest health.

NRCS accepts conservation program applications year-round; however, applications for fuel break funding must be submitted by July 27, 2012. Applications made after the deadline will be considered in the next funding cycle.

Additional information is available from the local USDA Service Center, which can be found at


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