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Barriers to implementation of risk management for federal wildland fire management agencies in the United States

Posted date: October 07, 2011
Publication Year: 
2010
Authors: Calkin, Dave E.; Thompson, Matthew P.; Ager, Alan A.; Finney, Mark A.
Publication Series: 
Miscellaneous Publication
Source: In: Viegas, D. X., ed. Proceedings of the VI International Conference on Forest Fire Research; 15-18 November 2010; Coimbra, Portugal. Coimbra, Portugal: University of Coimbra. 6 p.

Abstract

In this presentation we review progress towards the implementation of a risk-based management framework for U.S. Federal wildland fire policy and operations. We first describe new developments in wildfire simulation technology that catalyzed the development of risk-based decision support systems for strategic wildfire management. These systems include new analytical methods to measure wildfire risk to human and ecological values and to inform fuel treatment investment strategies at national, regional, and local scales. Application of risk assessment to support wildfire incidents has been dramatically advanced with the Wildland Fire Decision Support System and allowed policy modifications that encourage management of incidents for multiple objectives. The new wildfire risk management tools we discuss provide Federal agencies in the U.S. the ability to integrate risk-informed approaches to a wide range of wildfire management responsibilities and decisions. While much progress has been made, there remain several barriers that need to be addressed to fully integrate risk science into current wildfire management practices. We conclude by identifying five primary issues that, if properly addressed, could help public land management better realize the opportunities and potential payoffs from fully adopting a risk management paradigm.

Citation

Calkin, David E.; Thompson, Matthew P.; Ager, Alan A.; Finney, Mark. 2010. Barriers to implementation of risk management for federal wildland fire management agencies in the United States. In: Viegas, D. X., ed. Proceedings of the VI International Conference on Forest Fire Research; 15-18 November 2010; Coimbra, Portugal. Coimbra, Portugal: University of Coimbra. 6 p.