‘Fire: More good than harm’

Fire ecology researcher to speak in Cranbrook May 22

  • May. 14, 2014 1:00 p.m.
Dr. Lori Daniels

Dr. Lori Daniels

Trish Barnes/For the Townsman

An award-winning fire-ecology researcher will give a public talk on May 22 at the College of the Rockies in Cranbrook.

Dr. Lori Daniels, Associate Professor in the UBC Faculty of Forestry, will talk about her ongoing research in the East and West Kootenays. The public is welcome to attend this presentation, which is hosted by the Rocky Mountain Trench Ecosystem Restoration Program.

Daniels is an award-winning academic with several publications to her name. She runs the Tree Ring Lab in the Department of Forest and Conservation Sciences at the University of British Columbia. She works closely with the Trench ER Program and the Rocky Mountain Trench Natural Resources Society to conduct research about all things fire-, tree-growth- and climate-related.

“Understanding the historical function of fire and other natural disturbances is critical if we are to anticipate and respond to global climate change effectively,” Daniels said.

Historically, fires maintained the dry forests of B.C. “Fire scars show that surface fires burned every 10 to 40 years, on average,” she said. “Severe fires that generate new forests burned less frequently.

“Both forest-maintaining and initiating fires were associated with years and decades of warm, dry climate—providing insight into future fire regimes due to climate change.”

Daniels said fire regimes have changed during the 20th century due to combined influences of humans and climate.

“In the past 60 years, despite warmer temperatures, fires essentially were eliminated from many forests due to very effective fire suppression,” she said. “In absence of fire, tree density and fuels can build up, increasing the chance of a severe fire.”

By trying to protect our forests and communities from fire, she said, communities have made many dry forests more susceptible to severe fires. The changes in forests also have negative impacts on habitat and biodiversity.

Daniels said innovative, creative, and scientifically-based mitigation and restoration can improve forest resilience and is one way for society to prepare for the effects of climate change.

“We’re learning now how to fight fire with fire,” she said. “Where our good intentions have altered the forest, we need action.”

Daniels’ current work includes supervising PhD candidate Greg Greene in his study of the dynamics of forest ingrowth in the Trench valley bottom. Greene has spent last summer in the region sampling trees to discover links between forest ingrowth and encroachment and diminished tree growth. He will return again this summer to collect more data on encroachment and to produce an overlay map assessing exactly how much grassland and open forest has been lost since 1950.

This presentation is of great interest to anyone involved in grassland ecosystem restoration, wildlife habitat, and wildfire/urban interface fuel management.

The Rocky Mountain Trench Ecosystem Restoration Program would like to thank the provincial ER Land Based Investment Program in funding Dr. Daniel’s work and presentation in Cranbrook.

Just Posted

A tent housing a mobile vaccination clinic. (Interior Health/Contributed)
Over 5K jabbed at Interior Health mobile COVID-19 vaccine clinics

The clinics have made stops in more than 40 communities since launching last week

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interior Health COVID-19 cases falling slower than the rest of B.C.

More than a third of provincial cases announced Thursday came from the Interior

Students at Creston Valley Secondary School put together an art installation of a replica residential school room. (Photo by Kelsey Yates)
Creston students create art installation of residential school room

The replica was decorated with a small bed, school uniform, and notes written with pleas for help

A tent housing a mobile vaccination clinic. (Interior Health/Contributed)
Second dose vaccinations accelerating throughout region: Interior Health

To date, more than 675,000 doses have been administered throughout the region

It happened this week in 1914

June 13 - 19: Compiled by Dave Humphrey from the archived newspapers… Continue reading

Cranbrook Arts has opened the doors of their  new gallery space to the public with their inaugural exhibit, Kootenay’s Best.
‘Kootenay’s Best’ opens Cranbrook Arts’ new gallery

This exhibit has been in the works for the past several months and features the work of more than 50 emerging and established artists from across the Kootenays

FILE – Most lanes remain closed at the Peace Arch border crossing into the U.S. from Canada, where the shared border has been closed for nonessential travel in an effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, Thursday, May 7, 2020, in Blaine, Wash. The restrictions at the border took effect March 21, while allowing trade and other travel deemed essential to continue. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Feds to issue update on border measures for fully vaccinated Canadians, permanent residents

Border with U.S. to remain closed to most until at least July 21

A portion of the George Road wildfire burns near Lytton, B.C. in this Friday, June 18, 2021 handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, BC Wildfire Service *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Blaze near Lytton spread across steep terrain, says BC Wildfire Service

Fire began Wednesday and is suspected to be human-caused, but remains under investigation

Blair Lebsack, owner of RGE RD restaurant, poses for a portrait in the dining room, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. Canadian restaurants are having to find ways to deal with the rising cost of food. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Canadian restaurateurs grapple with rising food costs, menu prices expected to rise

Restaurants are a low margin industry, so there’s not a lot of room to work in additional costs

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
Fort St. John man arrested after allegedly inviting sexual touching from children

Two children reported the incident to a trusted adult right away

Barbara Violo, pharmacist and owner of The Junction Chemist Pharmacy, draws up a dose behind vials of both Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines on the counter, in Toronto, Friday, June 18, 2021. An independent vaccine tracker website founded by a University of Saskatchewan student says just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years old and above — are now fully vaccinated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
At least 20% of eligible Canadians fully vaccinated, 75% with one dose: data

Earlier projections for reopening at this milestone didn’t include Delta variant

This undated file photo provided by Ernie Carswell & Partners shows the home featured in the opening and closing scenes of The Brady Bunch in Los Angeles. Do you know the occupation of Mike Brady, the father in this show about a blended family? (Anthony Barcelo/Ernie Carswell & Partners via AP, File)
QUIZ: A celebration of dad on Father’s Day

How much do you know about famous fathers?

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed teen facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

Most Read