• Wildland Urban Interface Management

To download an application form for our 2016-17 season, please click here >>

Following the presentation (spring 2008) of the B.A. Blackwell and Associates Ltd report “Community Wildfire Protection Plan for the Slocan Valley” to the Fire Protection and Emergency Services branch of the Regional District of Central Kootenay, SIFCo commenced a mapping process to review Wildfire-Human Interface issues on the Slocan Community Forest landbase. The SIFCo mapping process outlined areas with very high risk and consequences (226 hectares), high fire risk and consequences (675 hectares), moderate, moderate to low, and low risk and consequences. The SIFCo mapping process used a methodology that included proximity to homes, fuel load, forest type and level of consequence if a fire were to occur. To view the maps, click here >>

In the spring of 2009, a Wildland-Urban Interface Wildfire Protection Program began in a few locations outlined in the mapping process that had ‘very high’ or ‘high’ risk and consequences if a fire were to occur. The project was funded with grants received through the Job Opportunities Program ($221,675) from the Federal Government, the Columbia Basin Trust ($25,000) and the Forest Investment Account ($80,000).

The project aimed at enhancing community safety and fire preparedness by reducing fuel loading. Treatment goals were to reduce lower canopy, ground, and ladder fuel loading, to alter the size classes of fuels, and to reduce horizontal and vertical fuel continuity. The project led to:

1. reduction in opportunities for ignition,
2. reduction in the intensity and rate of spread of a wildfire if one were to occur,
3. reduction in the potential impact to adjacent communities if a wildfire were to occur,

Work was carried out by a six-person crew with one supervisor. Displaced forest workers were employed.

In 2010-11 another $247,000 was invested in the Slocan Valley, and SIFCo treated 30 hectares within the village of New Denver.

In 2012-13 SIFCo worked with the Village of Silverton, investing $400,000 to treat 47 hectares of land between the Village and the Red Mountain resident area.

In 2013-2014 SIFCo started working with the Village of Slocan, investing $295,000 to treat 35 hectares of land above the Highway.

In 2015-16 SIFCo worked with the Village of Silverton, investing another $395,000 to treat 39.2 hectares north and east of the village, tying in with the 47 hectares done in 2012-13 and, thereby, completing a band of protection around the entire village.

Since SIFCo began its mission to make our community safer by investing in Wildland-Urban Interface management, a total of over 2.3 million dollars have been invested and close to 220 hectares of land have been treated in the Slocan Valley. We hope to expand and carry on this work in the years to come. If you are interested in working with us, please download an application form here >>