The Role of Prescribed Fire Councils in Restoring the West
Prescribed fire faces challenges to its use as a widespread ecological restoration tool in many fire-prone western North American ecosystems. The primary challenges to prescribed fire use include social, regulatory, and operational impediments. Prescribed Fire Councils (PFCs) are a mechanism utilized across the US to maintain and increase the use of prescribed fire, to increase outreach and science delivery, to engage stakeholders, and increase peer-to-peer education. PFCS were developed in the southeastern US and have recently expanded into western states and British Columbia. PFCs are diverse and represent place-relevant constituencies and the issues that the prescribed fire communities face. PFCs offer a way forward to increase and improve prescribed fire as a cultural, silvicultural, and restoration tool.