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Assessing the causes, consequences and spatial variability of burn severity: a rapid response proposal - Final Report to the Joint Fire Science Program

Author(s): Penelope Morgan, Andrew T. Hudak, Peter R. Robichaud, Kevin C. Ryan
Year Published: 2005

In this rapid response project, we have collected data on post-fire effects and pre-fire fuels and vegetation from 10 large fires that burned in 2003 and 2004. We use field and remotely sensed data collected during and soon after wildfires to quantify the interactions and spatial variability in fire effects, fuels, fire behavior, local weather and topography and to assess the accuracy of current and alternative image analyses for remote sensing of burn severity. We coordinate our work, share data, and communicate improved burn severity assessment approaches with Fire Management Teams (e.g. Incident Command and Burned Area Emergency Rehabilitation teams), managers, scientists, and others. Our efforts complement ongoing research and management applications by comparing alternative remote sensors and analysis approaches across a diversity of soils, vegetation, and fire conditions, and by explicitly linking fire behavior, fuels and fire effects to quantitative indicators of burn severity that can be assessed in the field, predicted from fire effects models, mapped quickly and accurately, and scaled. Our project will thus improve the assessment of the severity of post-fire effects, including the potential for erosion and sedimentation, and thus the strategic effectiveness of post-fire rehabilitation. We will work to develop a rapid yet consistent burn severity mapping approach that is applicable to different types of imagery (depending on which is available at the time).

Citation: Morgan, Penelope; Hudak, Andrew; Robichaud, Peter; Ryan, Kevin. 2005. Assessing the causes, consequences and spatial variability of burn severity: a rapid response proposal. Joint Fire Science Project 03-2-1-02. Moscow, ID: University of Idaho, Forest Resources Department. 21 p.
Topic(s): Fire Effects, Ecological - First Order, Fire Intensity / Burn Severity, Management Approaches, Post-fire Management, Post-fire Rehabilitation, Fire Regime
Ecosystem(s): None
Document Type: Technical Report or White Paper
NRFSN number: 11149
FRAMES RCS number: 324
Record updated: May 10, 2018