Reducing Fire Risk to People and Resources Issue
2008 Science Accomplishments
Landscape analysis facilitates cross-ownership restoration projects and evaluation of potential biomass supply
The forests of the eastern Cascade Range are ecologically complex. A century of human use, however, has fundamentally changed forest structure and processes, making a complex system even more challenging to manage. New uncertainty about the impact of climate change compounds the challenge of long-term management of east-side forests.
Forest biomass removed to reduce fire hazard can be used to produce electricity. Above, a biomass plant in California. Credit: Mark Nechodom
Forest landscapes and many management issues transcend property boundaries. However, forest management activities in the east Cascades are generally applied at a stand scale within an ownership, rather than a landscape scale across ownerships. Scientists conducted a landscape analysis to reveal the effects policy and land management activities have on forest ecosystems across multiple ownerships in eastern Washington. The analysis examined how fire exclusion and past management created current forest conditions. The resulting report also discusses methods for increasing forest resiliency, conservation of older forest conditions, and developing biomass use.
The Washington Department of Natural Resources, tribal and private landowners, and other interested parties are using information from this analysis to plan integrated restoration projects, examine potential biomass supply, and inform policy discussions.
Partners: Tapash Cooperative, The Nature Conservancy, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Washington Department of Natural Resources, USDA Forest Service Pacific Northwest Region, Yakama Nation
To learn more, contact Miles Hemstrom at firstname.lastname@example.org.