DENVER (KDVR) — The number of homes at risk of wildfire damage in Colorado would cost hundreds of billions to rebuild, according to a new report.
The Marshall Fire in 2021 shined a light on Colorado’s ballooning number of homes exposed to the risk of wildfire.
Property intelligence firm CoreLogic analyzed the number of homes each western state has that are exposed to the risk of wildfire, as well as how much reconstruction would cost. In the West, cities and homeowners keep expanding into so-called Wildlife-Urban Interface zones at the edge of wildfire-prone areas. Over time, more and more acres of property are being burned in wildfires each year.
Colorado has more of these homes than any state outside of California. There are 332,716 homes at risk of wildfire in the state — 100,000 more than are in the entire state of Texas, but still only one-quarter of the number of homes at risk in California.
In financial terms, it would take nearly the entire state budget to rebuild these homes. CoreLogic estimates the reconstruction costs of Colorado’s at-risk homes would be $140.9 billion. For California, the cost would be $760.8 billion.
Wildfire rebuilding costs amount to trillions of dollars nationally. All told, reconstruction for all the exposed homes in the West would cost $1.2 trillion.