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Environment

State Lifts Ban On Smoking, Campfires Near Woodlands After Wet Spell

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The state has lifted its restrictions on smoking and campfires near public woodlands after recent wet weather.

The ban was a rare step taken in late September amid extreme drought conditions. Now, the state says it's going back to its normal permitting system for open burning.

Officials say a rainy spell and higher humidity have eased the risk of wildfires despite the ongoing drought.

Towns can still put their own additional restrictions in place if they’re worried conditions are dangerously dry.

The most extreme drought area hasn't changed in the past few weeks, as of the most recent update last Thursday. It covers a band of Southeastern New Hampshire from the Tri-Cities to the Merrimack River Valley.

Conditions are getting better in the North Country and the far western part of the state, where the drought has been less severe since it began in late May.

Learn more about the drought's connections to climate change through our reporting project, By Degrees.

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