June 01, 2020

Cortez Masto Applauds $2 Million Award for Wildfire Research to the University of Nevada, Reno

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) today announced a National Science Foundation (NSF) award of $2,000,000 to the University of Nevada, Reno to pursue research into digital platforms that could be used to predict and monitor fire risks and help direct emergency responses to fires.

“As wildfire season gets longer, Nevada needs this kind of innovative, technology-driven research into preventing and responding to wildfires. I am proud of the incredible work of Nevada’s system of higher education in developing 21st-century techniques to keep communities all over the Silver State safe, and I'll keep fighting in the Senate for resources to support that work.”

BACKGROUND:

Senator Cortez Masto has promoted innovative solutions to address the challenges of Nevada and the nation through her Innovation State Initiative. In August of 2019, Senator Cortez Masto organized a first-of-its-kind wildfire summit in Reno, Nevada that brought together firefighters, ranchers, conservationists, scientists, power company executives, representatives of government agencies, and others. Summit participants discussed ways to both prevent wildfires and to respond to them when they do occur, as well as how to restore lands and structures damaged by fire.

Senator Cortez Masto has also recently introduced, along with Senator Mitt Romney (R-Utah), S. 3413, the bipartisan AIR Safety Act, to study the effects of unauthorized drones on wildfire suppression, and has passed bipartisan drone safety bills to provide for the safe and responsible use of drone technology, including during disasters.

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