D4: Bridging science and policy for improved wildfire resilience and healthy forests

Wildfires are a common and natural occurrence in many ecosystems around the world. However, wildfires can also significantly threaten lives and infrastructure. Several regions around the world have recently suffered record-breaking destructive wildfires, including Australia, Greece, Portugal, Russia, and the United States. The severity of wildfires are predicted to worsen with climate change in some regions, creating an urgent need to leverage science and technology to mitigate increasing wildfire risk while fostering healthy natural environments.

The 2018 California wildfire season was the most destructive and deadliest on record raising a number of complex policy issues for the state. A broad network of stakeholders, researchers, and decision-makers are working together to prepare for and respond to the new reality. This symposium will explore several examples where cross-cutting partnerships are leveraging advances in science and technology to better manage natural lands, improve emergency response, and respond to environmental impacts such as reduced air and water quality.

Presenters

  • Teresa Feo, Program Associate, California Council on Science and Technology
  • Angela Phillips Diaz, Executive Director of Government Research Relations, University of California, San Diego
  • Scott Stephens, Professor of Fire Science, University of California, Berkeley
  • Michelle Newcomer, Research Scientist, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab
  • Jennifer Montgomery, Director, Governor of California's Forest Management Task Force
  • Shawna Legarza, Director for Fire and Aviation Management, USDA Forest Service