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A Double Whammy: Climate Change and Stand-Replacing Wildfires

Author(s): Rocky Mountain Research Station
Year Published: 2019

In the Intermountain region of the Western United States, most forested landscapes are fire prone and adapted to a semiarid climate. With the severity of wildfires increasing as a result of excessive fuels, land managers are concerned about forest converting to non-forest types such as shrubland or grassland. “And then when you throw climate change into the mix, the wildfire conversion risk goes even higher,” said Sean Parks, a research ecologist with the USDA Forest Service Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute (ALWRI), Rocky Mountain Research Station (RMRS). Since it was unknown as to the extent of forests within the Intermountain region that were vulnerable to conversion through the combination of climate change and stand-replacing wildfire, Parks led a team to calculate that answer.

Citation: Rocky Mountain Research Station. 2019. A double whammy: climate change and stand-replacing wildfires. Science You Can Use (in 5 minutes). Fort Collins, CO: USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. 2 p.
Topic(s): Fire & Climate, Fuels, Fuel Treatments & Effects, Management Approaches, Risk
Ecosystem(s): None
Document Type: Research Brief or Fact Sheet
NRFSN number: 20493
FRAMES RCS number: 60370
Record updated: Dec 16, 2019