Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Our Future with Forest Fires: Climate Action Symposium

Climate science predicts hotter, drier summers, which means an increase in the number and severity of forest fires.

Are you wondering how the prospect of more wildfires will impact your business or community? Interested in learning how you can help mitigate this threat, and how our community can adapt to the new climate reality?

Join us for an afternoon featuring interactive displays and four talks that explore various aspects of this important issue. Our experts, Bruce Blackwell (BC Blackwell & Associates), Dr. Sarah Henderson (UBC), Geoff Playfair (Whistler Fire Rescue Services), and Scott Shaw-MacLaren (Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations) will speak to forest health and prescribed burns as a fire management tool; health impacts of smoke; Fire Smart and fuel management best practices; and wildfire impacts and adaptation opportunities pertaining to habitat and wildlife, recreation, tourism and industry, respectively. The talks will be followed by an Après in Action session, which will offer a social environment for professionals from different sectors to discuss the topics in more dept h.

Attendees will participate in dialogue and walk away with action tools and a greater understanding of how they can mitigate and adapt to wildfires.

Tickets are $25 for the afternoon and include one Après in Action drink ticket, or $10 per talk. Visit Eventbrite for details and to purchase tickets. Space is limited, so book now!

This event is made possible through generous funding from the Community Foundation of Whistler and the BC Lung Association.

Hosted by AWARE and the Sea to Sky Clean Air Society.

About Our Speakers

Bruce Blackwell

M.Sc., RPF, R.P.Bio. – Principal, BA Blackwell & Associates

Bruce has more than 20-years experience as a Professional Forester and Biologist primarily focused in fire and forest ecology, silviculture, vegetation management, wildland/urban interface planning, forest policy and practice audits and reviews. His talk will examine the historical to present day role of wildfire on forest health/ecology including traditional (indigenous) and modern use of fire to mitigate wildfire threats in our region.

Dr. Sarah Henderson

BASc, PhD – Assistant Professor, UBC

Dr. Henderson will share insights into health impacts related to forest fire smoke, which she has been studying since 2003. She leads an internationally recognized program of research and surveillance around forest fire smoke at the BC Centre for Disease Control.

Geoff Playfair

Fire Chief, Whistler Fire Rescue Services

Chief Playfair has been with Whistler Fire Rescue Services for over 30 years and was appointed Chief in 2015. He will be speaking about FireSmart and opportunities for mitigating wildfire threats around homes, property and neighbourhoods.

Scott Shaw-MacLaren

Resource Manager Sea to Sky Natural Resource District

Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations

Scott has years of experience reviewing resource development and tourism projects, species recovery and monitoring activities, and other resource management ventures. His talk will explore opportunities for adapting to the new wildfire reality, examining regional wildfire impacts on key values like habitat, wildlife, tourism, recreation, and industry.


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