Event: UBC and partners host symposium on innovative wildfire solutions

The unprecedented 2023 wildfire season was Canada’s worst on record, underscoring the urgent need for action. From June 3-5, leading wildfire experts will gather at UBC’s Okanagan campus to highlight the need to develop a transformative vision and implementation strategy for co-existing with wildfires before it is too late.

Wildfire Coexistence in BC: Solutions Symposium will shed light on the tremendous costs and profound impacts of wildfires on B.C., emphasizing that recent severe fire seasons are not an anomaly but a new and escalating reality driven by climate change.

Hosted by UBC wildfire experts Dr. Lori Daniels and Dr. Mathieu Bourbonnais, the symposium will feature speakers from UBC Vancouver, UBC Okanagan, Thompson Rivers University, Secwepemcul’ecw Restoration and Stewardship Society, Lytton First Nation, Pacific Salmon Foundation, and other partners and practitioners.

The event also includes a visit to the forests affected by the McDougall Creek fire, providing an opportunity to observe the effects of extreme wildfires and the benefits of treatments designed to reduce forest fuels near homes and neighbourhoods.

If you are a member of the media and would like to attend in person, please sign up for a media pass here (LINK

The media pass will include:

  • Access to all symposium events
  • Opportunity to interview speakers and panelists in an organized media scrum after each event. One-on-one interviews can be scheduled upon request. (Complete speaker list)
  • Access to a staffed, on-site media green room to write and file stories and safely store gear
  • Use of an audio booth to record voice

If you’re unable to attend, but would like to access post-event information, please email jillian.vandergeest@ubc.ca.

Date/Time: Monday-Wednesday, June 3-5 (Complete schedule)

Locations and parking:

  • June 3 – Kelowna Community Theatre, 1375 Water St., Kelowna, B.C. V1Y 0B4 (directions). Paid street parking available
  • June 4-5 – Room 201 of The Commons, 3297 University Way, Kelowna, B.C. V1V 1V7 (directions). To obtain a media parking code, please email david.bidwell@ubc.ca

Advance one-on-one interview opportunities are available. To arrange, please contact jillian.vandergeest@ubc.ca:

  • Dr. Lori Daniels, professor at UBC Vancouver and Koerner Chair in the Centre for Wildfire Coexistence, who focuses on proactive solutions to increase ecosystem and community resilience to wildfires
  • Dr. Mathieu Bourbonnais, assistant professor at UBC Okanagan, who employs advanced technologies to study wildfire risk and behaviour

More info: Wildfire Coexistence in BC: Solutions Symposium