Implementation & Standards

Implementation and Standards Committee

Chair: Jim Elleson, Quercus Land Stewardship Services

For more information on our Implementation and Standards Committee, or to join the committee, please contact Jim Elleson. Participation in the committee is open to any interested member of the WPFC.

Our Mission

The Implementation and Standards Committee develops specific recommendations for Wisconsin prescribed burn practitioners, including personnel training and experience, and implementation guidance.

The WPFC recognizes two sets of standards for prescribed fire implementation. The National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG) is considered the national authority in wildfire standards and implementation, and their standards are accepted as best practice by the WPFC. The Implementation and Standards Committee has also developed several documents important for the consistency of fire training and application specific to Wisconsin. These documents are intended to meet the need for an alternative to the NWCG standards, which are impractical for, or unavailable to, many prescribed fire practitioners in Wisconsin. These documents are not intended to supplant or preempt the NWCG qualification standards, but to provide a parallel track for those for whom it is appropriate. The WPFC is committed to continually improve best practices for the implementation and standards of prescribed burning in Wisconsin through academic inquiry and incorporation of lessons learned from skilled, professional practitioners from a variety of backgrounds.

In 2020, we updated our Recommended Qualifications for Prescribed Burn Personnel to provide more detail on recommended qualifications for Crew Leaders and Burn Bosses.

Currently, we are exploring the development of a Certified Prescribed Burn Manager program for Wisconsin.  We are still in the early stages, but we anticipate that such a program could provide certain privileges to individuals who meet the training and experience requirements as well as administering entities.  The level of training and experience required, as well as the privileges offered, are still to be determined.

Click here for a current report on the Certification Committee’s activities.

Wisconsin Prescribed Fire Council Standards

National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG)

The participating groups include the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management (BLM), National Park Service (NPS), Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and state forestry agencies through the National Association of State Foresters.

The purpose of NWCG is to coordinate programs of the participating wildfire management agencies so as to avoid wasteful duplication and to provide a means of constructively working together. Its goal is to provide more effective execution of each agency’s fire management program. The group provides a formalized system to agree upon standards of training, equipment, qualifications and other operational functions.

Visit NWCG’s website for more information.