In an August 9 letter, Idaho senators warned the Biden administration that jet fuel shortages will hinder firefighting efforts if they don’t coordinate strategies.

“In 2021, there are already over 108 large fires burning in 15 states and the need for an aerial response to fight these fires is a critical and much-needed tool,” the letter states. “We are concerned that fuel shortages could lead to the grounding of federal, state, and contracted aircraft and hurt the ability for initial fire attack and further devastate communities near the growing number of wildfires.”

The senators urged Biden to develop a plan to address fuel shortages, coordinate a response if a fuel shortage occurs during wildfires, and develop a plan for potential personnel shortages.

They emphasized the importance of a strategic and integrated approach to tackling wildfires, and the importance of continuing partnerships with state and local firefighting response units.