PORTLAND, Ore. – Smokey Bear is turning 75 next year, and to celebrate the milestone the group Keep Oregon Green is partnering with the U.S. Forest Service and Oregon Department of Forestry for a new state license plate design.
The plates feature the iconic forestry mascot’s mug alongside the greenery of the state, and the words “Keep Oregon Green.”
Proceeds from the license plates are to serve as a reminder that “only you can prevent forest fires” and protect Oregon’s scenic landscapes.
"Each year, approximately two-thirds of Oregon's wildfires are human-caused and they are all completely preventable," says Keep Oregon Green's CEO, Kristin Babbs. “Keep Oregon Green has been a household slogan since its inception in 1941, and this message is more important now than ever before. Wildfire awareness opportunities like this will help ingrain it in Oregonian’s DNA.”
The leading culprit of fires, officials say is illegal burning and driving poorly-maintained vehicles. Others were sparked by power lines, mowing dry grass, fireworks, and smoking.
You can buy a $40 voucher, which can be redeemed for the license plates through the DMV. The plates will go into production once they reach their goal of 3,000 vouchers sold.
You can learn more about how the exchanges work and buy a voucher at the Keep Oregon Green Association website.