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Forest Service backs off on retardants

Published 10/29/2011, The Associated Press

The U.S. Forest Service has backed off claims about the effectiveness of the huge red plumes of fire retardant that big airplanes drop on wildfires, but the agency does not expect to cut back on using it. Acting under a court order, the agency Friday posted on its website the final environmental impact statement laying out how it plans to use fire retardant without harming threatened and endangered fish, wildlife, and plants on national forests and grasslands covering 193 million acres in 44 states.

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