The Department of Agriculture has new wildlife fire enforcement officers.
On Monday morning, the Department of Agriculture held a ceremony at Adelup to swear in new foresters and forestry aides as well as the new wildlife fire enforcement officers.
In the 1970s, the Department of Agriculture and Navy at that time saw the need to survey Guam to support reforestation and restoration work throughout the island.
Christine Fejeran, Forestry Division Chief, emphasized the need to beef up manpower support for their program.
“There was a need for reforestation … for restoration work here, habitat restoration, soil erosion prevention, and all of these methodologies. But none of which could be possible without an effective and efficient fire program. So the foresters came out to Guam, they reviewed and in their words, the time is right, right now to plan and accelerate the development of the protection of Guam’s natural resources and to let fires continue to take their toll will only make development more difficult and more costly,” Fejeran said.
The ceremony was used to highlight the individuals who had the training and willingness to go out into the field and hike with heavy gear in order to survey the land and obtain the data necessary to have Guam’s fire report.
“We have 56 years of fire data, 7 years of those were dedicated to mapping, to really capture the true scale of this effort, the 5 individuals, and I know we have amazing partners out there, but when we talk about the hiking into the wildlands, having the gear, the training, to do that, these 5 individuals were left on their own for that part,” Fejeran said.