Secretaries Zinke and Perdue Host Inter-Agency Forestry & Wildfire Listening Session with Federal, Congressional and State Stakeholders

Secretaries Zinke and Purdue at a roundtable meeting
12/12/2017

Date: December 12, 2017
Contact: Interior_Press@ios.doi.gov

WASHINGTON – Yesterday, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke and U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue hosted an inter-agency listening session with federal, congressional, and state stakeholders. Photos for media use are available here.

"Wildfires affect all of us so it only makes sense that we all work together to prevent and fight them," said Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke. "Our inter-agency and partner meeting was the first of what I hope will be many to identify and implement better practices to manage our forests and save lives and communities."

“Yesterday was a good opportunity to reflect on the 2017 fire season, to recognize what did and didn’t work, and to collaborate on how we can move forward into 2018,” Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said. “With this being the costliest fire season in history, it is clear that we need a permanent fix to fire funding. I’m encouraged by the work being done in Congress and it’s imperative that we continue to communicate with stakeholders, so we can figure out how best to work together to manage forests and ultimately prevent fires the best that we can.”

​Accompanied by House Natural Resources Chairman Rob Bishop (UT), Congressman Bruce Westerman (AR) and stakeholders representing conservation, hunting, forestry, and state associations, conversation centered around fixing the wildfire funding problems, possible improvements to wildfire management, innovative ways to detect and suppress wildfires, and ways to improve cooperation between industry, state, and federal authorities. ​

Secretary Zinke and Secretary Perdue host Inter-Agency Forestry & Wildfire Listening Session with Federal, Congressional and State Stakeholders

Secretary Zinke, Secretary Perdue, and Congressman Rob Bishop participate in the listening session Next steps include figuring out which discussion points could become action items before the next season and sharing them with agency, state, and congressional partners.

Secretaries Zinke and Purdue at a roundtable meeting
Photo by Tami Heilemann, Interior Department.

A partial list of officials attending today's ​listening session is below.​

​Senior Federal Officials

  • Secretary Ryan Zinke
  • Secretary Sonny Perdue
  • Chairman Rob Bishop
  • ​Congressman Bruce Westerman

​Federal Officials

  • Director of Wildland Fire, Jeff Rupert
  • Deputy Assistant Secretary of Public Safety, Resource Protection, Emergency Services, Harry Humbert
  • Director of Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bryan Rice
  • Acting Director of National Parks, Mike Reynolds
  • Principal Deputy Director of the USFWS, Greg Sheehan
  • Conservation and Hunting Partners
  • Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation
  • Boone and Crockett
  • National Wild Turkey Foundation

Forestry Partners

  • National Alliance of Forest Owners
  • Federal Forest Resource Coalition
  • National Association of State Foresters
  • American Forest Resource Council
  • Montana Wood Products Association
  • Intermountain Forest Association
  • American Loggers Council
  • Public Lands Council
  • American Forest Foundation
  • Land Owner
  • National Association of Homebuilders
  • Maine Forest Products Council
  • Forest Resource Association Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies
  • Hardwood Federation