RMSS March Meeting — Thursday March 28, 2013

Date: Thursday, March 28, 2013
Time: 11:30 lunch (no cost); 11:50 welcome and introductions; noon presentation
Place: National Park Service, 7333 W. Jefferson, Lakewood, Conference Room 44
Presentation Title: Air Quality/Smoke Coordination as a Part of Wildfire Response
In the past few years, a limited number of Incident Management Teams responding to wildfires have included Air Resource Advisors to handle air quality and smoke coordination. While not a necessary element of every response, certain situations can be managed more efficiently when there is a qualified person addressing smoke and air quality. Local health, transportation, and air quality agencies, residents and local business owners, as well as the personnel in the fire camps, all have an interest the severity, timing, and impacts of smoke. A cache of portable air quality monitors ready for deployment to set up a network accessible through the Internet by a wide variety of users. Specialized smoke forecasting tools are used to generate information necessary for effective decision-making and then distributed for use through a wide variety of channels. These efforts have resulted in much positive feedback from the involved Incident Management Teams and the “downwind community” but there is still much to be done.
Mike Broughton is a Smoke Management Specialist with the US Fish and Wildlife Service. He graduated from Penn State University in 1977 with a BS in Meteorology. After a short stint as a forecaster with Accu-Weather, Inc. in Pennsylvania, Mike moved to California to accept a position as a research meteorologist with Oceanographic Services, Inc. This was followed by a number of years running Broughton Offshore and Coastal Services, performing wind and wave studies, arctic field work, and specialized forecasting projects. Shortly after the birth of his daughter in 1986, Mike began a 22-year career with the Santa Barbara County Air Pollution Control District, where he learned to mesh the regulatory interests of an air quality agency with the needs of the local business and prescribed burning communities. In January of 2010, Mike accepted a position with the US Fish & Wildlife Service as the national smoke management specialist where he continues to bridge the needs of air quality and fire management activities. Mike is Vice-Chair of the NWCG Smoke Committee and Chair of the Smoke Managers Subcommittee (air quality and fire professionals across the country with responsibility for Go/No Go decisions for prescribed fires based on smoke considerations). Last year, Mike worked as an Air Resource Advisor on numerous wildfires, including the High Park Fire near Ft. Collins, Colorado and the Halstead Fire near Stanley, Idaho, coordinating information on air quality and smoke associated with the fires.
Please rsvp to tpella@censara.org by Friday, March 22nd. If you have questions, you may call Theresa Pella at 512-585-1511.
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