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Fuels planning: Managing forest structure to reduce fire hazard

Peterson, David L.; Johnson, Morris C.; Agee, James K.; Jain, Theresa B.; McKenzie, Donald; Reinhardt, Elizabeth D. 2003. Fuels planning: Managing forest structure to reduce fire hazard. In: Second International Wildland Fire Ecology and Fire Management Congress and Fifth Symposium on Fire and Forest Meteorology; 2003 November 16-20; Orlando, FL, U.S.A. Poster 3D.5. Boston, MA: American Meteorological Society. Online:

Prior to the 20th century, low intensity fires burned regularly in most arid to semiarid forest ecosystems, with ignitions caused by lightning and humans (e.g., Baisan and Swetnam 1997, Allen et al. 2002, Hessl et al. 2004). Low intensity fires controlled regeneration of fire sensitive (e.g., grand fir [Abies grandis]) species (Arno and Allison-Bunnell 2002), promoted fire tolerant species (e.g., ponderosa pine [Pinus ponderosa], Douglas-fir) [Pseudotsuga menziesii], maintained an open forest structure (Swetnam et al. 1999), reduced forest fuel loads, decreased the impacts of insects, and maintained wildlife habitat for species that require open stand structures (Fule et al. 1997, Kalabokidis et al. 2002). Fire exclusion has caused the accumulation of understory vegetation and fuels, greater continuity in vertical and horizontal stand structure, and increased potential for crown fires (Dodge 1972, van Wagner 1977, Arno and Brown 1991, Agee 1993).

Keywords: fuels, low intensity fires

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Title: RMRS Other Publications: Fuels planning: Managing forest structure to reduce fire hazard
Electronic Publish Date: May 30, 2013
Last Update:
May 30, 2013

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