Channel Islands National Park Fire Management Plan and EA
Channel Islands National Park's current FMP was written in 2006 and last updated in 2013. It expired due to changes in NEPA and Categorical Exclusion (CE) use. The previous Fire Management Plan referenced Healthy Forest Initiative Categorical Exclusion HFI CE 3.4 G for fuels work in the park. In 2016, use of this CE was removed from the 9th circuit court states including CA, OR, WA, ID, and NV. Now, NPS units within the 9th circuit are required to produce an Environmental Assessment (EA) or Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for hazardous fuels reduction activities. Under the revised and updated FMP, the Park will continue to utilize prescribed fire in fire and fuels management, especially for burning vegetation management related debris piles.
The National Park Service (NPS) is required to have Fire Management Plans (FMP) for all units with burnable vegetation as defined by Reference Manual 18: Wildland Fire Management — NPS. Recent revisions to Department of the Interior and NPS fire management policy have resulted in changes to the requirements associated with FMPs, including new formats and templates. This combined with rapid landscape-level changes resulting from longer and more severe fire seasons and warmer and drier climatic conditions throughout parks of the Pacific West Region (PWR), has created a substantial short to moderate-term workload associated with National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and FMP revisions and updates.