April 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 37

relations administrator. This evidence includes more frequent
wildfire-smoke events.
King County's Strategic Climate Action Plan (tinyurl.com/
5l3psgee), updated in 2020, offers
guidance for preparing for and responding to climate change. The
plan outlines the county's 30-Year
Forest Plan and its 3 Million Trees
initiative that includes not only
planting new trees, but also protecting current forested landscapes
- which can mean thinning aging
forest stands to improve resiliency,
according to Brandt. " [It's] King
County's effort to, hopefully, lift all
boats and provide support where
we can to our partners who are also
managing forests, " she notes.
Another piece of the Strategic
Climate Action Plan is the King
County Wildfire Risk Reduction
Strategy, which will look at wildfire risk reduction comprehensively, says Lara Whitely Binder, King
County Climate Preparedness program manager. " We will be providing recommendations related to
what we could be doing to improve
forest health, what we could be doing to manage wildfire risk at the
wild and urban interface, and what
we need to be doing to increase
our capacity to respond to [a] wildfire when it occurs and to manage
wildfire smoke impacts. "
Developing this strategy involves
gathering information from experts in numerous fields across
many organizations, which notably includes parks and recreation.
" There's an incredible wealth of
information and understanding of
the landscape in park staff, " Whitely Binder says. The strategy, sched	

PHOTO COURTESY OF MECKLENBURG COUNTY PARK AND RECREATION

After a prescribed burn, trees remain
unharmed and invasive underbrush is
cleared from the nature preserves in
North Carolina.

uled to be completed in the fall,
also will include input from the
U.S. Forest Service, tribes, public
utilities, extension agents, permitting agencies, fire districts, emergency management and public
health departments, the clean air
agency and the state department of
natural resources.
" As you see in King County,
parks can have a really significant
set of assets in terms of being the
stewards of forested landscape, "
Whitely Binder says. " I think
there's a strong role for parks departments at large to play in being
part of the conversation around
wildfire risk reduction, because
they are stewards of forest landscapes that could be either affected
by or a conduit for fire that's moving across the landscape. "
King County's wildfire preparation will have to look a little different than in other areas of the West,
since the area has not evolved with
wildfires. Recent fires are a new

occurrence because of climate
change, Whitely Binder says. Large
amounts of forest thinning and
prescribed burns, a well-known
tool to prevent wildfires, could radically change the local ecology and
harm native species. That means
a focus on managing areas that sit
between the forests and residential
communities and figuring out the
best response for the local ecosystem, she explains.

California Park District
Develops Incident
Command Center
Monterey Peninsula Regional Park
District in Carmel, California, has
seen several of its parks impacted
by wildfire events, with portions of
parkland containing burned vegetation. Currently, it is designing and
developing an Incident Command
Center (ICC) at one of its parks to
help address future wildfires and
other natural disasters. " The ICC is
being planned in coordination with

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April 2021 - Parks & Recreation

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of April 2021 - Parks & Recreation

April 2021 - Parks & Recreation - Cover1
April 2021 - Parks & Recreation - Cover2
April 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 1
April 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 2
April 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 3
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April 2021 - Parks & Recreation - Cover3
April 2021 - Parks & Recreation - Cover4
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2021
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com