Fuels & Fuel Treatments
During this peer learning session, attendees will:
- Gain an understanding of the Partnerships on Every Forest (PEF) program and how it works to address partnership challenges,
- Hear a case study of the PEF program from the Bighorn National Forest, and
- Have opportunities to ask questions of the speakers.
Speakers include: Andrew Johnson, USDA Forest Service, Bighorn National Forest, Forest Supervisor; Joe Smith, USDA Forest Service, National Partnership Office, Senior Partnership Coordinator; and Leah Zamesnik, National Forest Foundation, Partnership Coordinator.
A year ago, the Landscape Fire and Resource Planning Management Tools (LANDFIRE) Program released its 2016 Remap for the conterminous United States (CONUS). The update was the most significant in LANDFIRE’s 16-year history, a ground-up rebuild of the base map to reflect 2016 land surface conditions that included a host of improvements to its 20-plus GIS mapping layers.
Because three key thresholds must be crossed all at once for a wildfire to start, avoiding just one of these thresholds─ ignitions, drought, or continuous fuels (Fig.1)─ could significantly reduce the likelihood of wildfire. As climate change makes fire weather more common everywhere, managing ignitions where wind is problematic and managing fuels where drought is problematic will help to keep stochastic, out-of-regime fires contained. Where fire management tools won’t help, a fire danger zone should be designated to reduce human activity and development, much like volcano or flooding zone designations.
Utah State University Research Landscapes will address the latest in wildfire science and management, including:
Controlling aspects of the “fire triangle.”
Using fire as a tool to limit “disaster fires.”
Managing fuel to reduce severity of fires.
Focusing less on the number of acres burned and more on human impact of fires.
The event will feature a presentation by Dr. Larissa Yocom, USU assistant professor of wildland resources and Utah’s only dedicated wildfire ecologist. Her presentation will be followed by a live question-and-answer session.
Join The Nature Conservancy (TNC) for a virtual event that highlights the longstanding relationship between American Indian cultures and fire, challenges related to fire faced by Indigenous communities and ways in which partners and TNC are supporting American Indian communities’ efforts to revitalize their traditional cultures in today’s context.
Field tour webpage.
Breaking the Cheatgrass Cycle- Hear from rangeland professionals on topics such as:
Grazing for fuels management
Herbicide cheatgrass control
Perennial grass carbon sequestration
Fire prevention and restoration
This paper describes the ongoing development of a comprehensive set of vegetation reference conditions based on over 900 quantitative vegetation dynamic models and accompanying description documents for terrestrial ecosystems in the USA. These models and description documents, collaboratively developed by more than 800 experts around the country through the interagency LANDFIRE Program, synthesize fundamental ecological information about ecosystem dynamics, structure, composition, and disturbance regimes before European-American settlement. These products establish the first comprehensive national baseline for measuring vegetation change in the USA, providing land managers and policymakers with a tool to support vegetation restoration and fuel management activities at regional to national scales. Users have applied these products to support a variety of land management needs including exploring ecosystem dynamics, assessing current and desired conditions, and simulating the effects of management actions. In an era of rapid ecological change, these products provide land managers with an adaptable tool for understanding ecosystems and predicting possible future conditions.
This paper examines administrative policies and barriers to using outcome-based approaches to manage fire risk in Idaho through 70 semistructured interviews with permittees, BLM staff, and other agency and nongovernmental stakeholders in three Idaho BLM field areas. We analyzed how rules and norms in policy implementation contributed to perceptions of barriers within and among different field areas. Factors affecting perceptions of outcome-based rangeland management implementation included BLM staff tenure, permittee-agency relationships, beliefs about the efficacy of grazing to manage fire risk, and leadership and staff experience in navigating National Environmental Policy Act requirements or potential lawsuits. Differences in the informal institutions among field areas led to different interpretations of latitude found within formal institutions (“gray zones”) for implementation. This study highlights the importance of local context and the interactions between administrative policies and agency culture for implementing adaptive approaches to managing wildfire risk on public rangelands.
Shrub cover in two experimental stands prior to burning was 38% and 59% and was 36% and 45% one-year post burn. In both stands shrub patch density increased, while area-weighted mean patch size and largest patch index decreased. Increased local percent cover of coarse woody material was associated with increased shrub consumption. These findings provide information for prescribed fire managers to help better anticipate shrub consumption and patchiness outcomes under similar conditions.
In this communication we briefly review and illustrate how forest roads relate to recent advances in operationally focused wildfire decision support. We focus on two interrelated products used on the National Forest System and adjacent lands throughout the western USA: potential wildland fire operational delineations (PODs) and potential control locations (PCLs). We use real-world examples from the Arapaho-Roosevelt National Forest in Colorado, USA to contextualize these concepts and illustrate how fire analytics and local fire managers both identified roads as primary control features. Specifically, distance to road was identified as the most important predictor variable in the PCL boosted regression model, and 82% of manager-identified POD boundaries aligned with roads. Lastly, we discuss recommendations for future research, emphasizing roles for enhanced decision support and empirical analysis.