Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy
Northeast Region
A firefighter from Plymouth, MA, uses a drip torch to ignite grasses in a prescribed fire.
A firefighter from Plymouth, MA, uses a drip torch to ignite grasses in a prescribed fire.

Resilient Landscapes - Fire-Adapted Communities - Safe and Effective Wildfire Response  
The Northeast Regional Strategy Committee (NE RSC) provides executive leadership, coordination, and guidance to carry out the Northeast Regional Action Plan while providing a forum for members to guide strategic direction for fire and land management activities. The NE RSC continues to collaboratively recognize, support, and help with National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy goals and implementation efforts.

Brad Simpkins, New Hampshire State Forester
In This Issue
Northeast Region Cohesive Strategy Key Contacts


Chief Fire Warden

Mass. Dept. of Conservation and Recreation


Maureen Brooks


U.S. Forest Service Northeastern Area S&PF


Larry Mastic

Coordinator, Northeast Region

Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy

Important Links

Forest Fire Compacts

Quick Links

Science and Joint Fire Science Consortiums & Exchanges

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February 2017

Registration Open for Wildland Fire Workshop  
Registration is now open for the National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy Workshop. Registration includes admission to all workshop sessions and social activities. There is a $50 discount for regular registrations made before March 15; registration for U.S. Forest Service employees is waived. Register today! Visit the workshop Web page for more information.

Advertising banner for the National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy Workshop. Aerial view of a smoke-filled landscape.

Why Some Places Need to Burn
The Trustees of Reservations set fire to Wasque, again.

January 4, 2017

A firefighter is visible through a wall of flame.
Firefighters conduct a prescribed burn in Long Point Wildlife Refuge in West Tisbury in May of this year. (Photo: Joel R. Carlson)

After a few delays due to higher winds, The Trustees of Reservations burned part of Wasque on Nov. 14. Folks over 50 might remember television commercials that concluded with Smokey Bear pointing at viewers and saying in a deep voice, "Only you can prevent forest fires." By now Americans are getting used to the
idea    ---   Vineyard residents are already used to it ---   that you have to burn some natural places in order to save them or make them work.

Though for decades, fire-suppression strategy was the official policy of the U.S. Forest Service, the service now admits this might be what has fueled the intensity and frequency of the sorts of fires now burning up the American West. In the 1960s, ecologists began to realize that the suppression of fire  ---   whether wildfire or those started by humans  ---   was not only leading to a dangerous buildup of tinder in a lot of environments, but was also causing some forest and nonforest habitats to disappear, taking along with them the animal species associated with the flora.

Pennsylvania Reintroduces Fire Towers 

December 23, 2016

Fire Tower atop a hill on a sunny day.
Ricketts Glen State Park is the site of one of the fire towers Pennsylvania may replace. (Photo: Nicholas A. Tonnelli on Flickr/Creative Commons 2.0)

More than six decades after transitioning to newer methods, Pennsylvania is returning to a tried-and-true approach toward combating forest fires: fire towers. The state plans to replace up to 25 existing towers and to build two new ones by summer 2017. Fire wardens and volunteers will staff the towers during the height of fire season, typically March through May.

The return to fire towers may seem anachronistic in this era of aerial surveillance and cell phones, and the state plans to continue using those methods of detection as well. But officials with the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR), which manages 2.2 million acres of state forests, say towers are as reliable and as practical now as when they were first built, at the dawn of the 20th century.

New Plans for Young Forests

H. Rose Schneider, The Altamont Enterprise

January 24, 2017

Several firefighters in yellow jackets set fire to a field as part of a prescribed burn.
Prescribed burns are scheduled every year at the Albany Pine Bush Preserve, once every 10 years for each site. They promote the health of the preserve habitat. (Photo from Sara Poggi, Albany Pine Bush Preserve)

ALBANY COUNTY ---     It may seem counterintuitive, but the state Department of Environmental Conservation is looking to remove trees in various protected areas across New York State.

A plan by the DEC includes 10-year plans for two protected areas in Albany County. The  Louise E. Keir Wildlife Management Area is a 187-acre area in the town of Coeymans, and features an uncommon, fire-dependent habitat ---    a pitch pine-oak-heath rocky summit. The  Margaret Burke Wildlife Management Area is a 245-acre habitat in the town of Knox. Both have suffered from a decline in young forest habitat.

National Wildfire Community Preparedness Day
Wildfire Community Preparedness Day banner.

What will you accomplish on Wildfire Community Preparedness Day? Use our project resources, including template press releases, project ideas, and more, to help you with your project. And, be sure to put your project on the map!

176 Communities Added to National Firewise Communities/USA Program

Blog Post created by  Cathy Prudhomme

January 9, 2017

Four people pose for a picture by a sign.
(Photo: NFPA)

Residents working towards reducing their wildfire risks within 176 communities, achieved national recognition for their accomplishments through the  National Fire Protection Association's  National Fire Protection Association's Firewise Communities/USA Program in 2016.

They now join communities throughout 41 states that annually complete a required set of  renewal criteria to remain a participant. The grassroots efforts implemented in these sites demonstrates the homeowner's commitment to make important contributions in making their investments better prepared for when wildfires occur. There's currently  1,388 active recognized Firewise sites located in  wildland/urban interface areas where wildfire risks exist.

Read the full blog post.

New LANDFIRE Guidebook Helps Meet Local Needs
Jeannie Patton, Communications Lead, TNC ---    LANDFIRE

January 18, 2017

Dilemma: You're a land manager who needs consistent, current cross-boundary datasets so that you can do your job, e.g. fire behavior modeling, broad-scale planning, assessing natural resources, prioritizing activities, and securing and decision support. Regrettably, available data don't meet your needs.

  1. Create your own datasets. However, given time and expense constraints, that's not a likely scenario.
  2. Stitch together existing datasets, but that means that users may be challenged by differences in map legends, scale, methods, and currency (i.e. differences in data vintage).
  3. Modify an existing dataset. Do-able.
Solution : Option #3, the resolution that the LANDFIRE program offers when geospatial data products prove inadequate to meet user needs. But, how does a person modify datasets? Where do you start?

Investigating Local Capacity in Wildfire Response Networks Report logo. Friday Flash eNews Issue 185 | January 27, 2017

Principal Investigator: Branda L. Nowell, North Carolina State University-Raleigh, School of Public & International Affairs

Relational Risk Assessment and Management is about developing a new set of concepts and rapid assessment tools for assessing risk for problems that occur in interagency communication and coordination on complex fire events. Failures in effective communication and coordination within the network of responding organizations and agencies during a wildfire can lead to problematic or dangerous outcomes.

Heading of a report titled Relational Risk Assessment and Management Investigating Capacity in Wildfire Response Networks.

Conferences, Meetings, and Training Opportunities


Conferences and Meetings


March 1-2, 2017
Fort Custer National Training Center
Augusta, MI

March 7-8, 2017
Nashville, IN


Preconference March 18-21, 2017
Conference March 21-23, 2017
Peppermill Resort
Reno, NV
All Hands, All Lands: Implementation Rooted in Science
April 25-27, 2017
Reno, NV
June 4-7, 2017
Boston, MA

Save the Date!
Northeast Forest Fire Supervisors Annual Meeting
June 19-23, 2017
Hanover, MD

FireVision 20/20: A 20-Year Reflection and Look into the Future
7th International Fire Ecology & Management Congress

Held concurrently with the 2nd Applied Fire Science Workshop
Hosted by the Association for Fire Ecology in cooperation with the Southern Fire Exchange
November 28 - December 2, 2017
Orlando, FL

The Northeast Regional Strategy Committee (NE RSC) delivers articles and stories each month that demonstrate the collaborative efforts of agencies, organizations and communities supporting and promoting the three goals of the Cohesive Strategy: Restoring Resilient Landscapes, Creating Fire Adapted Communities and Responding to Wildfire. 


This news update is our primary communication tool with our partners and the public. Looking for more Northeast Region Cohesive Strategy information or past published news update issues? Visit this Web site.


Does your agency, organization, or community have a project or event you'd like to see featured in the NE RSC News Update? 


Tell us about it! Just contact  Larry Mastic .
Northeastern Area State & Private Forestry | 603-868-7685 | |
11 Campus Blvd
Suite 200
Newtown Square, PA 19073