Don Hankins

Don Hankins, a professor in the Department of Geography and Planning at California State University, Chico, is an expert in pyrogeography, water resources, and conservation. Don is a Miwkoʔ (Plains Miwok) traditional cultural practitioner. Combining his academic and cultural interests, he is particularly focused on applying indigenous land management practices as a keystone process that aids in the conservation and management of resources. He is currently engaged in fire and water research involving indigenous California and Aboriginal Australian communities.
wildfire smoke and sunset

Beyond the Plume of Smoke


“While acute smoke is bad for human and environmental health, smoke in moderation can be part of human and environmental health and well-being.”

smoke a CZU

Reading the Landscape for Fire


In the beginning, fire burned the world. Don Hankins’ Plains Miwok ancestors passed on this understanding of fire through generations, and he draws from it as a traditional cultural practitioner pyrogeographer when burning landscapes in California.