Community Education & Risk Planning

Wildfire risk is increasing in western Washington due to changing climate conditions that include:

  • Increasing air temperature
  • Decreasing summer rain
  • Earlier snow melt

It all adds up to drier fuels and forests that are more receptive to ignition and spread of wildfire.

Many of us in Whatcom County are living in what would be considered the wildland urban interface or intermix, otherwise known as the WUI (pronounced woo-ee) - where homes and people reside next to or within natural terrain and flammable vegetation.  The draft WUI map below shows WA Dept. of Natural Resources' latest analysis of these areas in Whatcom County.  

Draft WUI map of Whatcom County

Whatcom CD provides presentations and resources to community groups and neighborhoods on wildfire risk in western Washington, and how to make homes, landscapes, and communities safer.

One of the most effective tools for communities in addressing their wildfire risk is the NFPA Firewise USA® Program.  This is a national recognition program that provides communities a framework with which to understand and address their wildfire risk together.

Whatcom CD helps lead communities through the Firewise USA® program process, including implementing wildfire risk reduction projects.

For more information on the Firewise USA® program, visit 


 Currently, there are 6 active Firewise sites in Whatcom County.  They include:

WCD can provide presentations and resources on wildfire preparedness and the Firewise USA® Program.



This page was last modified on 03/03/20 - 16:10