Congressmen introduce Wildfire Tech DEMO Act (HR 4235) that would allow private entities to partner with federal land management agencies to test wildfire technologies alongside ongoing hazardous fuels mitigation activities, training under four-year pilot

Sample article from our Forestry & Timberland

June 29, 2023 (press release) –

Today, U.S. Representative Young Kim (CA-40) introduced a bipartisan bill with Rep. Jason Crow (CO-06) to expand access to wildfire technologies.

The Wildfire Tech Demonstration, Evaluation, Modernization, and Optimization (DEMO) Act (HR 4235) allows private entities to partner with federal land management agencies to test wildfire technologies alongside ongoing hazardous fuels mitigation activities and training. The 4-year pilot program would be developed jointly by the Secretary of Agriculture and Secretary of the Interior.

“First responders should be able to access effective and innovative tools they need to prevent, detect, and contain wildfires,” said Rep. Kim. “From communications to remote sensing and safety equipment, emerging technologies have huge potential in improving wildfire response. The Wildfire Tech DEMO Act is a win-win for private entities looking to test their technologies at-scale and federal land management agencies working to deploy emerging technologies to help first responders address wildfires and keep communities safe. I thank Rep. Crow for introducing this with me, and I will keep fighting to protect public safety.”

“Colorado has been increasingly impacted by wildfires. We need to find innovative technologies to fight wildfires and protect our families,” said Rep. Crow. “Partnering private companies with public needs can help develop the best equipment and techniques for fighting massive wildfires that threaten our vital infrastructure, homes, and communities.”

“Our communities rely on cooperative efforts between federal and local fire departments. Technology has the opportunity to increase the safety, operability, and efficiency of our joint efforts to keep our residents and natural resources safe from wildfire. For too long our federal partners have not had the same access to emerging technology as their local counterparts. I am grateful of the introduction of this bill to bridge this gap that ensures better outcomes in our wildfire responses,” said Dan Munsey, Fire Chief, San Bernardino County Fire.

“Cutting-edge innovations like AI and quantum computing can positively transform critical services like emergency management, and it’s vital that relevant agencies can access these life-saving technologies,” said Jason Oxman, President and CEO, Information Technology Industry Council (ITI). “Congresswoman Kim’s Wildfire Technology Demonstration, Evaluation, Modernization, and Optimization (DEMO) Act will help the U.S. government harness the power of AI and other advanced technologies to not only help efficiently mitigate wildfires and natural disasters but also develop preventative strategies.” 

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