Monday, August 7, 2017

Scientists Say Nation Must Choose - Planned or Unchecked Fires?

Hayman Fire in Colorado, 2002.  Photo: US Forest Service.

In a recent Treesource article, Karl Puckett quotes Mark Finney, research forester for the US Forest Service's Rocky Mountain Research Station who says we're in a "fire paradox" where the more we fight against fires, the worse they get when they happen.  

"The secret to living with fire is having more fire," adds Finney.

Good fire is planned, prescribed fire burning to reduce fuels that can contribute to large, destructive fires. These controlled fires help create species and age conditions in forests that are less monolithic and more mosaic. Prescribed fires also help change the vegetation and ladder fuels to create an environment where surface fires can be more manageable.  

Finney argues that we need to let good fire out of the box and start using it instead of fighting it.

Other experts weigh in for the article and mention the National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy as a framework to strengthen collaboration to meet the three strategic goals - resilient landscapes, fire adapted communities and a safe, effective wildfire response. 

Read the full article here.  


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