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José G. Flores Garnica, Alejandra Macías, Uri D. Casillas
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Risk assessment

NRFSN number: 19073
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The limited availability of resources for wildfire management necessitates prioritizing forest areas for protection. For this purpose, criteria such as fire risk are used to generate thematic maps intended to support decision-making. However, prior to this, the information must be validated under a statistically robust process. Unfortunately, no such process currently exists, so it must be formulated from the most basic aspect, which is the definition of the sampling unit. This was the objective of this study, where different-sized reference sites (RSs) were tested under four sampling intensities randomly distributed throughout the state of Jalisco, Mexico. Within each RS, the number of fires was determined for the period 2005-2013. It was found that variability in the number of fires decreased as the size of the RS increased, until reaching an asymptotic behavior (around 100 km2). In this way it was determined that a RS of 100 km2 captures the variability in the number of fires, which was termed Risk Factor (RF). Finally, the use of this parameter will support the definition of the risk validation process. In addition, the standardization of the RS will generate information, in different regions, that is not only comparable but also compatible.


Flores Garnica, José G.; Macías, Alejandra; Casillas, Uri D. 2019. Risk factor as a strategy to validate the prioritization of areas for wildfire protection. In: González-Cabán, Armando; Sánchez, José J., tech. eds. Proceedings of the fifth international symposium on fire economics, planning, and policy: ecosystem services and wildfires. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-261 (English). Albany, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station: 215-227.