Are Wildfires the Unavoidable Investment Theme for the Future?
Wildfires are burning out of control in North America and throughout the world with more predicted. Products and services that prevent or extinguish major fires will continue to be in demand. The Procure Disaster Recovery Strategy ETF (NASDAQ: FIXT) focuses on corporations that are in the business of natural disaster recovery, response, and prevention. Wildfires are just one of the disasters that fall within the FIXT ETF.
The economic cost of wildfires is far reaching. The local destruction of forests, homes, and businesses is just the first line of disaster. The smoke from major wildfires is creating a secondary impact on the economy. Dense smoke can travel for miles closing airports, slowing retail business, and increasing health issues. The need to prevent, stop, and rebuild from wildfires is essential.
During a wildfire, fast response is critical. Immediate access to products and services like trucks and retardants is essential. The following corporations meet some of these needs:
- REV Group* produces fire trucks, pumpers, aerial ladders, and aerial water towers.
- Oshkosh* manufactures traditional and electric fire trucks.
- MSA Safety* is known for firefighting and firefighter equipment such as protective clothing, fire helmets, search and rescue equipment, and thermal imaging. Their tagline is “When you go in, we go with you.”
- Perimeter Solutions SA* specializes in fire-related personnel, service, logistics and products including firefighting retardants, foam equipment, ground application equipment, tanks, and trailers.
- Babcock International* delivers an integrated aerial firefighting management service. Specifically, their helicopters can make critical water drops on wildfires.
- Nvidia* develops algorithms to analyze and predict wildfires, remotely detects structural damage during a fire, and assists firefighters in tracking wildfires.
Post Wildfire Action
After a wildfire has been extinguished it is essential to analyze its cause. The following corporations help devise solutions to prevent future fires, identify who or what was responsible for the fire, and outline damage estimates:
- AECOM* conducts infrastructure damage assessment, performs forensic evaluations, and offers architectural, engineering, and construction services. As an example, AECOM is working with energy utilities to bury lines underground to protect them from wildfires and other natural disasters.
- Arcadis* performs debris and hazardous tree removal in post-wildfire areas. They analyze soil and air to ensure there are no toxins in the air or ground and has set up cleaning facilities to remove hazardous chemicals in the environment.
Wildfire Prevention and Preparation
Finding ways to prevent or mitigate damage from wildfires is an ongoing process by these corporations:
- Verisk* is in the business of performing Wildfire Risk Analysis. They determine the wildfire risk for properties and analyze variables such as vegetative fuel, road access, and wind patterns.
- NV5 GLOBAL* performs fire mitigation studies especially for utility firms focusing on vegetation trimming and management guidance as well as code compliance. Forensic investigations are conducted after events.
- Cummins* sells backup generators to help provide uninterrupted service. In California, wildfires and planned outages have affected electrical grids leaving residents without power. Cummins also offers fire pump drives for sprinklers and engines for firefighting vehicles.
- Assa Abloy* manufactures fire resistant doors and controls which are especially important to protect critical infrastructure.
- Stantec* conducts studies of post-wildfire hazards such as debris floods, avalanches, and mudslides. Results can help communities prepare against future disasters. Remote sensing is used to predict hazards, like wildfires, to give communities an opportunity to evacuate and/or make safety preparations.
Wildfires are proliferating and the market for firefighting and prevention products and services will be busy. FIXT, the Procure Disaster Recovery Strategy ETF highlights corporations that are there to help communities prevent, prepare for, and recover from natural disasters such as wildfires.
*As of June 12th, 2023, AECOM (ACM) was a 1.79% holding, Arcadis (ARCAD NA) was a 1.85% holding, Assa Abloy (ASSAS SS) was a 1.78% holding, Babcock International (BAB) was a 1.96% holding, Cummins (CMI) was a 1.71% holding, MSA Safety (MSA) was a 2.13% holding, NV5 (NVEE) was a 1.82% holding, Nvidia (NVDA) was a 3.10% holding, Oshkosh (OSK) was a 1.82% holding, Perimeter Solutions (PRM) was a 1.54% holding, REV Group (REVG) was a 1.89% holding, Stantec (SNT CN) was a 1.94% holding, Verisk (VRSK) was a 2.27% holding in the Procure Disaster Recovery Strategy ETF (NASDAQ: FIXT).
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