Alkali Resource Management forester Francis Johnson (left) and Greg Greene of Greene Forestry Consulting Ltd. were among 80 people who attended a community forest conference focusing on wildfires held in Williams Lake March 12 to 14. Monica Lamb-Yorski photo

Community forests conference delves into wildfire preparedness, management and recovery

The event in Williams Lake attracted delegates from across B.C.

A two-day conference focused on wildfire preparedness, management and recovery took place in Williams Lake this week.

“We have about 79 attendees from throughout the province who include community forest managers, provincial government staff and researchers,” said Stephanie Ewen, manager of the Alex Fraser Research Forest, the organization who hosted the conference in co-operation with the B.C. Community Forest Association.

Discussions focused on how community forests can be used as a beneficial resource to the BC Wildfire Service, to improve firefighting response and things that can be done to rehab forests more efficiently by working together in fireguard development and quick response to rehabilitation.

“This afternoon we are going to be getting into a new paradigm for silviculture and how to manage our forests for more a resilient state in light of all these wildfires we’ve been having,” Ewen said.

Read more: Wildfires focus of upcoming workshop for B.C.’s community forests

On Tuesday, a draft protocol agreement between the BC Wildfire Service, woodlot licences and community forest agreement holders was released at the conference.

“It’s a formal document that outlines the communication line between all of those to ensure that within our area-based tenures we have more influence on how fires are fought and the BC Wildfire Service has access to some of our resources as well,” Ewen said.

BC Community Forest Association executive director Jennifer Gunter said community forests are very motivated to be engaged in wildfire management and mitigation trying to protect their communities and also manage forests in a way that brings back resiliency.

“We want to lay out a framework that community forests and woodlots can use in communication with the fire centre staff in their zone,” Gunter said. “It’s based on the four pillars of wildfire management and includes information on prevention, planning and preparedness, response and rehabilitation.”

Gunter said while the protocol agreement is something new, several community forests and woodlot managers would already have good relationships with their local BC Wildfire Service representatives.

“This provides a structure for everybody to use and identify roles and responsibilities so they can really be prepared and respond to fire more effectively and recover from fire more efficiently.”

Graduate students in attendance have been taking notes during the presentations, Ewen said.

“We’ve had short presentations followed by long discussions so we can get some knowledge exchange and questions answered so our grad students are gathering information that we will be able to put together afterwards in a more polished document,” she added.

Read more: Forests management post wildfires, focus of BC Federation of BC Woodlot Associations AGM



news@wltribune.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Severe thunderstorm watch in effect for Cariboo, North Thompson region

Prince George, Quesnel, Williams Lake and 100 Mile House all under watch

International Safe Travels designation program approved for Gold Rush Trail, Cariboo Chilcotin Coast

World Travel and Tourism Council approves, businesses and communities can apply

Barkerville apologizes for ‘surviving pandemics’ newspaper ad

“Surviving Pandemics Since 1862” has been removed from any further ad campaigns

Barkerville writes a new page in its own history book

Kate Cox is the new CEO of Barkerville Historic Town and Park and Cottonwood House Historic Site

Williams Lake cow boss statue replacement options explored

Statue was modelled after Evan Howarth, former cow boss at Cotton Ranch

Police issue warning after baby comes across suspected drugs in Kamloops park

The 11-month-old girl’s mother posted photos on social media showing a small plastic bag containing a purple substance

Collision results in train derailment just east of Golden

The derailment occurred Sunday night, according to a statement from CP

Lower Mainland woman says llama farming neighbour shot her 11-month-old pup

Young dog was on owner’s Maple Ridge property when it was killed on June 21

B.C. records 31 new cases, six deaths over three days due to COVID-19

There are 166 active cases in B.C., 16 people in hospital

B.C. highway widening job reduced, costs still up $61 million

Union-only project scales back work to widen Trans-Canada

Greater Victoria nanny pleads guilty to child porn, sexual interference charges

Johnathon Lee Robichaud pleaded guilty to slew of sex crimes

Most Read