5th Symposium on Fire and Forest Meteorology and the 2nd International Wildland Fire Ecology and Fire Management Congress

Tuesday, 18 November 2003: 4:30 PM
Burning Issues: Partners in Fire Education—Implementation in Two Land Management Units
Jennifer A. Chapman, National Park Service, Point Reyes Station, CA; and K. Antunez, D. E. LaHart, and J. Owens
Poster PDF (410.3 kB)
With a growing number of property losses caused by wildfire, and ecological problems caused by altered fire regimes, fire education has become a critical fire management strategy. Burning Issues, an interactive multi-media program developed by the Bureau of Land Management and Florida State University, and delivered through Project Learning Tree, provides a social treatment which complements fuel treatments in the wildland-urban interface.

Land management agencies involved in educating their surrounding communities about fire management are significant stakeholders in the implementation of the Burning Issues program. Some of these communities are recovering from wildfire. Furthermore, community support is needed for a successful prescribed fire program. Undeveloped lands where fire has occurred or been applied offer a vital field trip component to the classroom activities presented in the Burning Issues program. Local fire ecology and fire management examples allow students to connect their new knowledge to the environment they live in.

Burning Isssues classroom and field trip activities create a more fire literate and firewise citizenry. A case study of how the Burning Issues program is being implemented in Marin County, California, at Point Reyes National Seashore and Golden Gate National Recreation Area will be presented. Together these parks have over 60 miles of wildland-urban interface and an opportunity to reach an extensive audience in the San Francisco Bay Area. Point Reyes National Seashore experienced a major wildfire in 1995, resulting in the loss of 45 homes and numerous other changes in a highly diverse ecosystem. Golden Gate NRA is contiguous with Mount Tamalpais, one of the area's highest wildland fire hazard zones. Prescribed fire is used at both sites. The Burning Issues program is an effective tool for building understanding about fire management in these national parks, adjacent communities, and surrounding lands.

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