Wednesday, July 4, 2018

WFLC Meets in Colorado Springs - Witnesses Cohesive Strategy Implementation at the Local Level

From top left: Field tour to local children's camp where prescribed fire used immediately adjacent to buildings to reduce risk. 2nd row: subdivision visit to see impacts from 2012 Waldo Canyon Fire and community investment since then; Western Governors Association update at WFLC meeting. 3rd row: visit to Colorado Springs Fire Department to learn about local recovery programs; the WFLC meeting. Photos: Kate Lighthall

Members of the Wildland Fire Leadership Council met in June in Colorado Springs, Colorado to view and understand on-the-ground successes that support WFLC priorities and the goals of the Cohesive Strategy. The first day of the meeting included a field tour that highlighted activities based on Cohesive Strategy principles at the local level including prescribed fire, smoke management, wildfire response, competing priorities, post fire recovery and collaboration. The tour showcased how these activities are working to address challenges, opportunities and successes of partners along the Front Range of Colorado where several destructive fires have taken lives and destroyed over 1,000 homes in the last six years.  

The following day, the group convened to hear updates on priority issues and national legislation from Western Governors Association, the Intertribal Timber Council, the Western Forestry Leadership Coalition, the Council of Western State Foresters and the three Cohesive Strategy Regions.  

WFLC continues to focus on their top priorities provide strategic leadership to their organizations and the Regional Strategy Committees:
  • Work environment  
  • Active Management 
  • Mitigation post fire impacts
  • Integration of technology and data
Through their discussions and viewing of on-the-ground implementation of the Cohesive Strategy, WFLC members and partners gained valuable insight that will continue to set the stage for how local implementation is impacted by policies and directives nationally.

The Wildland Fire Leadership Council is an intergovernmental committee of Federal, state, Tribal, county and municipal government officials convened by the Secretaries of the Interior, Agriculture, Defense and Homeland Security dedicated to consistent implementation of wildland fire policies, goals and management activities. The Council provides strategic recommendations to help ensure policy coordination, accountability and effective implementation of Federal wildland fire management policy and related long-term strategies through a collaborative environment to help ensure effective and efficient wildfire management, promote fire-adapted communities and create resilient landscapes to achieve long-range benefits for society and nature. 

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