Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Biscuit Fire tests effectiveness of forest thinning and prescribed burning practices

13.03.2006
recently published study in the Canadian Journal of Forest Research indicates that fuel reduction treatments should simultaneously take place in the overstory, understory, and on the ground to adequately reduce fire severity.
A Thinning trees without treating surface fuels does not reduce mortality adequately because mortality can occur from hot fires on the ground, as well as fires that burn through the tree crowns.

The study, "Fuel Treatments Alter the Effects of Wildfire in a Mixed-Evergreen Forest, Oregon, USA," is co-authored by Crystal Raymond, University of Washington and David L. Peterson, Pacific Northwest Research Station/USDA Forest Service.

The 2002 Biscuit Fire in southwestern Oregon impacted forest resources, threatened lives, and costs millions of dollars to suppress. It also provided a rare opportunity to study previous fuel treatments (thinning of forest stands and underburning of surface fuels) to see which projects actually reduced tree damage when the Biscuit Fire burned through.

The research team measured the effects of fuel treatments in a Douglas-fir--tanoak forest. Scientists were fortunate to have data collected before the Biscuit Fire with which to directly quantify the relationship between forest structure and fire severity. The effectiveness of two fuel treatments at reducing tree damage and mortality was measured by comparing treated and untreated forests that burned in the fire.

"The number of trees killed in the Biscuit Fire was highest in the thinned areas we studied, most likely due to slash left after the thinning treatment," Raymond explains. "Overstory tree mortality was lowest in sites that were thinned and then underburned, and moderate in sites that were not treated prior to the Biscuit Fire. Thinning ladder fuels is just the first step in effective fuel treatment for most forests." Ladder fuels are the small trees that carry fire from the ground to the overstory tree crowns.

Fuel treatments intended to minimize damage to the overstory are more effective if fine fuels on the ground are reduced following removal of understory trees. "We have known this in principle for many years," says Peterson, a research biologist at the Station, "and the Biscuit Fire gave us a chance to validate the effectiveness of on-the-ground fuel treatments."

Federal agencies are mandated to reduce fuel accumulations in dry forests throughout the West. However, studies like the one conducted by Raymond and Peterson that validate the effectiveness of fuel treatments are rare. "Data from the Biscuit Fire provide new scientific evidence that will help improve techniques for treating fuels. As more wildfires burn through treated areas, we will have additional opportunities to document how well those treatments are working," adds Peterson.

Sherri Richardson Dodge | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.fs.fed.us/pnw/

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product
02.12.2016 | Purdue University

nachricht New findings about the deformed wing virus, a major factor in honey bee colony mortality
11.11.2016 | Veterinärmedizinische Universität Wien

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

Nothing will happen without batteries making it happen!

05.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

A big nano boost for solar cells

18.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Glass's off-kilter harmonies

18.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Toward a 'smart' patch that automatically delivers insulin when needed

18.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>