I wish more schools had programs like the one shown below, because you just can’t beat that kind of experience early on. It would create an increase in a postive fire culture, helping people to realize that fire is a good thing in terrestrial ecosystems, and could help decrease the prescribed burning backlog that many human-managed ecosystems are still suffering from. A lot of the negativity and the many misconceptions the public has towards fire is simply due to a lack of education in fire ecology. You can go to almost any Facebook page that gives active updates on fires and read the emotionally based and scientifically blind responses people write in the comments under many of the photos. A few basic classes in that subject in grade school through high school would help out quite a bit and show people that fire is a natural and necessary part of land-based ecosystems. Without fire, we wouldn’t have many of the plants and wildlife we have today.
Fire is good and Smokey is still misguided!
Kudos to the University of Montana, The University of Idaho, The Nature Conservancy, The Orianne Society, and the Georgia Department of Natural Resources!