The third annual Rocky Mountain Regional Wildfire Smoke Symposium, presented by Boise State’s Center for Excellence in Environmental Health, in collaboration with Assistant Professor Luke Montrose of Colorado State University, was successfully held virtually on November 14, 2022. The symposium focused on community resilience. A keynote talk by Dr. Richard Kwok, Program Director at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), set the stage for building community resilience by discussing how the NIEHS prioritizes disaster preparedness, community outreach initiatives and the social determinants of health.
Throughout the day, sessions examined community engagement and strategies for communication, as well as sustainable programs and improved infrastructure for better air quality. Dr. Katie Dickinson, from the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, and Dr. Hannah Brenkert-Smith, from the University of Colorado Boulder, also facilitated a cognitive mapping activity on prescribed burning decisions, including stakeholder perspectives, public perceptions, and policy options.
Over 150 people registered to attend the symposium, and about 75% of those attended for the first time. Attendees came from various backgrounds, including government, academia, industry, and non-profit organizations.
The fourth annual smoke symposium will likely be an in-person meeting in Colorado in the fall of 2023. Information on exact date and location is not yet available. Please reach out to Dr. Luke Montrose at Colorado State University at email@example.com if you would like to participate on the planning committee or if you have a suggested theme or session topic you would like to see.