Published in the Standard Journal, 18 January 2016
The Island Park Sustainable Fire Community is a collaborative group of concerned citizens, representatives from local private businesses, nonprofit organizations and local, state and federal government agencies committed to building a strong social, ecological and sustainable forest community and as a participating member of the Fire Adaptive Communities Learning Network, promote a culture of living with fire within the wildland urban interface communities.
Our mission statement is as bold as our ideals. Human and ecological communities of Island Park and West Yellowstone are resilient to fire, insect and disease through awareness, outreach and action.
This statement demonstrates the homogeny that can exist between the people who live and recreate within the forests of southeastern Idaho and the natural order of the forests themselves, one as reliant upon the other for long-term existence. It’s a statement that exclaims that through increased awareness and by practicing sound stewardship and establishing a well-engineered foundation for future development, we may anticipate the forests and our personal investments within them can survive the evolutionary events of fire, insect and disease intrusions.
The group is working diligently to help create a balance of the challenges of living and working within a dynamic natural forest environment. The IPSFC, first organized in 2012, has sought to sanction its bylaws and articles of incorporation to support its nonprofit status, operates within the framework of established goals under the supportive nurturing of an interdisciplinary steering committee. The group is currently engaged in delivering its message of adaptive landscapes to the community through hosted public events and workshops, producing and delivering a door-to-door outreach education program, conducting research and analysis and utilizing federal grant dollars installing defensible space for demonstration purposes.
We’ve developed a webpage at http://www.islandparkfirecommunity.com to keep you informed of the group’s accomplishments, planned events, associated fire adapted communities links and lessons learned. We urge you to visit our site and become more familiar with the organization’s activities and to learn how you can become a partner with IPSFC and help improve your defensible space. You’re also invited to attend one of the group’s scheduled public meetings or even better, become an active member of one of the many working committees.