Rocky Mountain Research Station Publications
RMRS Online Publication
RMRS-GTR-91: Cascading effects of fire exclusion in the Rocky Mountain ecosystems: a literature review
Keane, Robert E.; Ryan, Kevin C.; Veblen, Tom T.; Allen, Craig D.; Logan, Jessie; Hawkes, Brad. 2002. Cascading effects of fire exclusion in the Rocky Mountain ecosystems: a literature review. General Technical Report. RMRSGTR-91. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. 24 p.
The health of many Rocky Mountain ecosystems is in decline because of the policy of excluding fire in the management of these ecosystems. Fire exclusion has actually made it more difficult to fight fires, and this poses greater risks to the people who fight fires and for those who live in and around Rocky Mountain forests and rangelands. This paper discusses the extent of fire exclusion in the Rocky Mountains, then details the diverse and cascading effects of suppressing fires in the Rocky Mountain landscape by spatial scale, ecosystem characteristic, and vegetation type. Also discussed are the varied effects of fire exclusion on some important, keystone ecosystems and human concerns.
Keywords: wildland fire, fire exclusion, fire effects, landscape ecology
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Cascading effects of fire exclusion in the Rocky Mountain ecosystems:
a literature review
Electronic Publish Date: January 9, 2003
Last Update: January 17, 2007
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