International Wildland Fire Summit
"Fire Management and Sustainable Development:
Strengthening international cooperation to reduce the negative impacts
of wildfires on humanity and the global environment"
Sydney, Australia, 8 October 2003
Note: This website is regularly updated concerning the implementation of the outcomes of the Summit
(last update: 31 December 2011)
The 3rd International Wildland Fire Conference was held in Sydney, Australia, 3-6 October 2003. The conference followed-up the First International Conference on Wildland Fire (Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.A., 1989) and the Second International Conference on Wildland Fire (Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, 1997). The Third Conference was sponsored by the USDA Forest Service, the Australasian Fire Authorities Council, and NFPA International. Some of the proceedings (abstracts and full papers) presented at the conference are available digitally:
Following the Conference an International Wildland Fire Summit was held on 8 October 2003 between invited representatives from all regions of the globe to develop a strategy for the improvement of wildland fire management. Also attending were invited representatives of those countries and international agencies most able to assist, or having a significant stake in the situation. The participants met to collectively plan both short- and medium-term pragmatic solutions to the problems being confronted in wildland fire management. The summit came up with an agreement for the implementation of a five-year wildland fire strategy.
The following three documents provided information on the organization and scope of the International Wildland Fire (IWF) Summit, including a comprehensive background paper:
As a result of the summit, participants had been invited to consider four position papers. These papers have been edited in the course of the Summit and were finalized in the post-Summit discussions. The final versions, including an additional paper on Community-Based Fire Management, are included in the Summit Communiqué (see below).
Outcomes of the Summit
The Summit Communiqué includes the final versions of the Summit conclusions and the five position papers.
- Summit Communiqué (Original version with text of the five papers and technical annexures, updated 23 April 2004 – PDF file, 283 KB, 57 p.)
- Summit Communiqué (Short version with main Summit outcomes - 3 p.)
- Summit publication with all documents (ECE/FAO International Forest Fire News – IFFN No. 29)
Additional Statements delivered at the Summit:
Summit Statement by the Southern African Fire Network (SAFNet) (SAFNet Workshop, Kruger National Park, South Africa, 17 - 22 August 2003)
Summit Contribution from Russia: New Approaches to Forest Fire Management at an Ecoregional Level in the Far East of the Russian Federation (Khabarovsk, Russian Federation, 9-13 September 2003)
Group photograph of the summit participants (8 October 2003)
Follow-Up: The Global Wildland Fire Network
A number of regional consultations and conferences have been accomplished during the post-summit process:
Activities of the Global Wildland Fire Network (GWFN) 2003-2013:
- The Global Wildland Fire Network
- Regularly updated documents reflecting the status of the global cooperative arrangements (Status Paper Global Wildland Fire Networks and Framework for the Development of the International Wildland Fire Accord
- Third International Wildland Fire Conference and Global Wildland Fire Summit 2003
- Activities 2004: 13 Regional and international activities, and a GWFN summary publication
- Activities 2005: 14 Regional and international events, and two reports
- Activities 2006: 7 Regional and international events
- Activities 2007: 11 Regional and international events
- Activities 2008: 14 Regional and international events
- Activities 2009: 10 Regional and international events
- Activities 2010: 15 Regional and international events
- Activities 2011: 15 Regional and international events
- Activities 2012: 24 Regional and international events
- Activities 2013: Planned regional and international activities
FAO Ministerial Meeting on International Cooperation in Forest Fire Management
- Agenda of the FAO Ministerial Meeting on International Cooperation in Forest Fire Management (Rome, 14 May 2005) (PDF, 80 KB)
- FAO Background Paper for the Ministerial Meeting on International Cooperation in Forest Fire Management (PDF, 100 KB)
Issues Identified by the Regional FAO Forestry Commissions in 2004 (Recommendations towards international cooperation in wildland fire management are highlighted)
Recommendations of the first meeting of the UN-ISDR Wildland Fire Advisory Group and the Global Wildland Fire Network (GFMC / Germany, 3-4 December 2004)
Global Wildland Fire Network poster exhibition at the Ministerial Meeting / COFO (Rome, 15-19 March 2005) (JPG, 1 MB)
On-site statement by the UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UN-ISDR) / Wildland Fire Advisory Group / Global Wildland Fire Network at the FAO Ministerial Meeting on Forests, 17th Session of the FAO Committee on Forestry (COFO), 14-19 March 2005 (presented by the Global Fire Monitoring Center (GFMC), 16 March 2005)
Summary of the Ministerial Meeting on Forests and the Seventeenth Session of the FAO Committee on Forestry, 14-19 March 2005 (published by ENB, 21 March 2005)
Statement of the Ministerial Meeting on Forests (Rome, 14 March 2005; statements related to wildland fire are marked yellow)
Final Report of the 17th Meeting of the FAO Committee on Forestry (COFO) (Rome, 19 March 2005; statements related to wildland fire are marked yellow; versions in other FAO languages can be downloaded at: www.fao.org/forestry/site/cofo/en)
Follow-up of the Ministerial Meeting and COFO-17: Draft of The Fire Management Code (for international stakeholder discussion and comments, up to 31 October 2006)
Background Documents on International Cooperation in Wildland Fire ManagementThe following additional background documents are provided for briefing summit delegates and the international wildland fire community about earlier resolutions, agreements and ongoing programmes on which the Summit will build.
I. Decisions, recommendations and outputs of earlier international conferences
During the last decade several dedicated international conferences recommended global action programmes in wildland fire research and fire management cooperation.
First International Wildland Fire Conference (Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.A., 23-26 July 1989)
Recommendations of the Wildland Fire Community at the UN-IDNDR World Conference for Natural Disaster Reduction (Yokohama, Japan, 23-27 May 1994)
Declaration of the 1995 Chapman Conference "Biomass Burning and Global Change" (Williamsburg, Virginia, USA, 13-17 March 1995)
ECE/FAO/ILO Conference on "Forest, Fire, and Global Change" (Shushenskoe, Russian Federation, 4-9 August 1996)
Second International Wildland Fire Conference (Vancouver, Canada, 25-30 May 1997)
II. World Summit for Sustainable Development (WSSD)
The goal of the International Wildland Fire Summit will contribute to the implementation of the recommendations of the WSSD
During the WSSD a major initiative led by UNEP-OCHA was launched to increase international cooperation in the field of prevention, preparedness and response to environmental disasters. From the beginning wildland fire issues have been included.
The UNEP-OCHA Advisory Group on Environmental Emergencies (AGEE) at its 5th meeting in May 2003 decided to utilize the Partnership Programme to enhance international cooperation in wildland fire management.
5th AGEE Meeting Report (25 May 2003)
AGEE Website: http://www.reliefweb.int/ochaunep/govern/agee5.htm
III. International Agreements for Assistance in Wildland Fire Emergencies
A documentation of established international mechanisms for mutual assistance in wildland fire emergencies and documents with surveys and evaluation of existing agreements on cooperation in wildland fire management is provided by the GFMC.
IV. Documents of UN Agencies and Programmes
A special website has been created by the GFMC in which all reference documents on international wildland fire issues can be downloaded
V. Global Fire Monitoring Center (GFMC)
The GFMC website provides access to scientific and user-oriented global wildland fire information and data, including facilitation of wildland fire emergency support
Back to Regional Wildland Fire Networks
Back to GFMC Homepage