B.C.’s wildfire crisis was forecast, but it arrived decades sooner than expected
The onset of large, severe wildfires that threaten communities year after year has occurred earlier in B.C. than previous research projected, and experts say the record-shattering 2023 season must serve as a springboard for action.
“Society is already paying a huge cost for these climate change-fuelled fires,” she says.
“The thing we can control in the short term is the vulnerability of the landscape.”
Reducing that vulnerability means transforming how B.C.’s diverse landscape is managed. Shifting away from a timber-focused approach that prioritizes conifers over less-flammable broadleaf trees and ramping up prescribed burning are key steps toward protecting communities by supporting healthy, resilient forests, Daniels says.