Fire Management Plan Update
The NPS is pleased to announce the completion of the updated 2019 Fire Management Plan (FMP) for Devils Postpile National Monument. An update to the 2005 FMP has been was needed to not only to conform to current federal policy but importantly to reduce the risk of a high severity fire reoccurring in the monument, and allow for the restoration of a more natural fire regime. This will promote a more fire resilient ecosystem while protecting visitors and facilities in the monument, in the adjacent National Forest lands and in the communities and resorts to the east. The revised FMP will help guide fire and fuel management activities within the monument over the next 20 years.
The National Park Service (NPS) completed an Environmental Assessment (EA) for the new FMP in October 2018. The FMP EA described two alternatives Alternative A: No Action Alternative: Full Suppression with Limited Fuel Treatments and Alternative B: Targeted Suppression with Limited Managed Wildfire and Monument-wide Fuels Treatments. The NPS selected a modified Alternative B for implementation, which conforms to federal and NPS wildland fire management policy allowing the full range of strategic and tactical options to be available and considered in the response to every wildland fire. This alternative allows for wildfire and fuels management throughout the monument, including the 85% of the monument designated as wilderness. The Selected Alternative includes strategies for the suppression of unwanted wildfires, the management of some wildfires for multiple objectives, including resource benefit, and the implementation of prescribed fire and manual treatment projects to achieve protection and resource objectives. The Selected Alternative allows for the use of strategies for managing natural ignitions to reduce hazardous fuels, restore fire in fire-adapted ecosystems, improve wildlife habitat, and restore native vegetation when appropriate conditions exist. All human-caused wildfires will be suppressed.
The NPS encouraged public participation throughout the National Environmental Policy Act process during which the public had two opportunities to formally comment on the project. The first was completed during initial project scoping in January-February 2018, and the second during the public comment period for the EA in October-November, 2018. After the public review period for the EA, NPS staff carefully considered each comment received. Several small changes were made to the EA, and these are recorded in an Errata Sheet and are a permanent part of the decision record.
NPS Pacific West Regional Director Stan Austin signed a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) for the updated FMP on February 14, 2019. The FONSI records the decision to implement the new FMP and explains why implementation will not result in significant environmental impacts. It also includes the park's responses to comments received and the Errata Sheet documenting the changes to the EA.
Copies of the new Fire Management Plan, FONSI and Environmental Assessment may accessed and downloaded by clicking on the "Document List" link at the left side of this page.
Thank you for your interest in Devils Postpile National Monument.
Deanna M. Dulen
Deanna Dulen, Superintendent, 760-924-5505