Multi-objective scheduling of fuel treatments to implement a linear fuel break network

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We developed and applied a spatial optimization algorithm to prioritize forest and fuel management treatments within a proposed linear fuel break network on a 0.5 million ha Western US national forest. The large fuel break network, combined with the logistics of conducting forest and fuel management, requires that treatments be partitioned into a sequence of discrete projects, individually implemented over the next 10–20 years. The original plan for the network did not consider how linear segments would be packaged into projects and how projects would be prioritized for treatments over time, as the network is constructed. Using our optimization algorithm, we
analyzed 13 implementation scenarios where size-constrained projects were prioritized based on predicted wildfire hazard, treatment costs, and harvest revenues.

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