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Fire

Fire seasons are becoming longer and more intense across the United States. The CASC network works with partners to develop knowledge and tools to better understand region-specific drivers of wildfires, to aid fire management efforts, and to facilitate ecosystem recovery post-fire.

Filter Total Items: 99

Developing science syntheses to facilitate climate-informed land management decisions and NEPA analyses on rangelands in the sagebrush biome

The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) requires federal public land managers to assess potential environmental impacts of proposed actions. The USGS, Bureau of Land Management, US Fish and Wildlife Service, Colorado State University, and North Central Climate Adaptation Science Center are working together to develop science syntheses that can facilitate considerations of climate change in...
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Developing science syntheses to facilitate climate-informed land management decisions and NEPA analyses on rangelands in the sagebrush biome

The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) requires federal public land managers to assess potential environmental impacts of proposed actions. The USGS, Bureau of Land Management, US Fish and Wildlife Service, Colorado State University, and North Central Climate Adaptation Science Center are working together to develop science syntheses that can facilitate considerations of climate change in...
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Soil-climate for Managing Sagebrush Ecosystems

Soil-climate describes the temperature and moisture conditions important for plant growth and function. Soil condition patterns determine which vegetation is most abundant, thus controlling which habitats, invasive species, fuels, and economic activities are present in a region. Here, we use a model to simulate the vertical movement of water in a soil profile to provide insights into landscape...
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Soil-climate for Managing Sagebrush Ecosystems

Soil-climate describes the temperature and moisture conditions important for plant growth and function. Soil condition patterns determine which vegetation is most abundant, thus controlling which habitats, invasive species, fuels, and economic activities are present in a region. Here, we use a model to simulate the vertical movement of water in a soil profile to provide insights into landscape...
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Climate Effects on Prescribed Fire Implementation and Efficacy in Northern Mixed-Grass Prairie

Prescribed burning – planned, controlled fires conducted under weather and fuel conditions designed for safety and effectiveness – is a common practice used to maintain and restore native prairies in the Northern Great Plains. However, climate change will affect the number of days in a year, and when, suitable conditions for prescribed fires occur. For instance, warmer temperatures may shift thes
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Climate Effects on Prescribed Fire Implementation and Efficacy in Northern Mixed-Grass Prairie

Prescribed burning – planned, controlled fires conducted under weather and fuel conditions designed for safety and effectiveness – is a common practice used to maintain and restore native prairies in the Northern Great Plains. However, climate change will affect the number of days in a year, and when, suitable conditions for prescribed fires occur. For instance, warmer temperatures may shift thes
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How Do Critical Life History Stages Limit Plant Adaptation to Changing Climate? The Role of Seedling and Sapling Survivorship in Ecosystem Resilience

Ecosystems respond to disturbances (such as wildfire) and changing climate in a variety of ways, including persistence, recovery, and reorganization into new combinations. Some species respond by migrating across the landscape over time, which allows them to keep up with changing climate. Many forests recover after wildfire by regenerating from seeds, and public land managers often assist these pr
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How Do Critical Life History Stages Limit Plant Adaptation to Changing Climate? The Role of Seedling and Sapling Survivorship in Ecosystem Resilience

Ecosystems respond to disturbances (such as wildfire) and changing climate in a variety of ways, including persistence, recovery, and reorganization into new combinations. Some species respond by migrating across the landscape over time, which allows them to keep up with changing climate. Many forests recover after wildfire by regenerating from seeds, and public land managers often assist these pr
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Informing Forest Treatment Placement to Mitigate High-Severity Wildfire Risk

Large, hot, fast-moving wildfires are an increasing threat to communities and to the watersheds they rely upon. Forest managers work to reduce the risk from these fires using forest thinning and prescribed burning to reduce the amount of fuel in the forest. However, these activities are expensive, and it can be challenging to identify which acres of forest should be targeted with thinning and burn
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Informing Forest Treatment Placement to Mitigate High-Severity Wildfire Risk

Large, hot, fast-moving wildfires are an increasing threat to communities and to the watersheds they rely upon. Forest managers work to reduce the risk from these fires using forest thinning and prescribed burning to reduce the amount of fuel in the forest. However, these activities are expensive, and it can be challenging to identify which acres of forest should be targeted with thinning and burn
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Megafire Risk Evaluation System (MERES) for the Southern Great Plains

Characterized by their extreme size, intensity, and severity, megafires are the most destructive, dangerous, and costly wildfires in the U.S. Over the past two decades, megafires have become more frequent in Oklahoma and Texas along with increasing extreme weather events and changes to fuel types caused by woody plant encroachment into grasslands. As climate change and woody plant encroachment are
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Megafire Risk Evaluation System (MERES) for the Southern Great Plains

Characterized by their extreme size, intensity, and severity, megafires are the most destructive, dangerous, and costly wildfires in the U.S. Over the past two decades, megafires have become more frequent in Oklahoma and Texas along with increasing extreme weather events and changes to fuel types caused by woody plant encroachment into grasslands. As climate change and woody plant encroachment are
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The Role of Forest Structure in Regulating Water Availability and Implications for Natural Resources and Ecosystem Function

Wildfire, drought, and insects are reshaping forests in the Western United States in a manner that is being exacerbated by warming temperatures. Disturbance events such as these can significantly alter the amount of land that is covered by forest in an area or region. Consequently, changes in forest cover from disturbance can impact water runoff conditions leading to dangerous flooding, erosion, a
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The Role of Forest Structure in Regulating Water Availability and Implications for Natural Resources and Ecosystem Function

Wildfire, drought, and insects are reshaping forests in the Western United States in a manner that is being exacerbated by warming temperatures. Disturbance events such as these can significantly alter the amount of land that is covered by forest in an area or region. Consequently, changes in forest cover from disturbance can impact water runoff conditions leading to dangerous flooding, erosion, a
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A Multi-Scale Decision Support Platform for Adaptive Management of Post-Fire Landscapes in the Inland Northwest

Climate change is contributing to an increase in wildfire activity in the western United States, including the Blue Mountains and Eastern Cascades Slopes and Foothills of the Inland Northwest. Some forest ecosystems are changing from forest to non-forest because of severe fires, a hot and dry climate, and/or the absence of a viable seed source. On sites impacted by wildfire, managers are tasked wi
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A Multi-Scale Decision Support Platform for Adaptive Management of Post-Fire Landscapes in the Inland Northwest

Climate change is contributing to an increase in wildfire activity in the western United States, including the Blue Mountains and Eastern Cascades Slopes and Foothills of the Inland Northwest. Some forest ecosystems are changing from forest to non-forest because of severe fires, a hot and dry climate, and/or the absence of a viable seed source. On sites impacted by wildfire, managers are tasked wi
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Assessing Vulnerability of Vegetation and Wildlife Communities to Post-Fire Transformations to Guide Management of Southwestern Pine Forests and Woodlands

Wildfire is a natural and essential process in forest ecosystems, but characteristics of fire regimes that have shaped these landscapes over long time scales are changing with climate change and human activities. In some places, changes in fire size, frequency, and severity threaten to degrade essential ecosystem services that produce clean air and water, fertile soil for crop and wood production,
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Assessing Vulnerability of Vegetation and Wildlife Communities to Post-Fire Transformations to Guide Management of Southwestern Pine Forests and Woodlands

Wildfire is a natural and essential process in forest ecosystems, but characteristics of fire regimes that have shaped these landscapes over long time scales are changing with climate change and human activities. In some places, changes in fire size, frequency, and severity threaten to degrade essential ecosystem services that produce clean air and water, fertile soil for crop and wood production,
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California Reforestation Management Toolshed: A Web-Based Dashboard of Integrating Existing Resources

Millions of acres of California’s forest cover have been lost due to severe wildfire and drought mediatedinsect outbreaks. These acres may not grow back as forests without management action, which could negatively impact carbon sequestration, access to clean drinking water, wildlife habitat and recreation opportunities. Various factors, including limited regeneration potential, hotter and more ext
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California Reforestation Management Toolshed: A Web-Based Dashboard of Integrating Existing Resources

Millions of acres of California’s forest cover have been lost due to severe wildfire and drought mediatedinsect outbreaks. These acres may not grow back as forests without management action, which could negatively impact carbon sequestration, access to clean drinking water, wildlife habitat and recreation opportunities. Various factors, including limited regeneration potential, hotter and more ext
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Cycles of Renewal: Returning Good Fire to the Chumash Homelands

Fire has always been a part of life in southern California. Climate change and current fire management practices have led to catastrophic losses and impacts to human health, infrastructure and ecosystems, as seen, for example, in the 2018 Montecito debris flow. Indigenous wisdom instructs that rather than suppressing fire, we should seek to be in good relationship with fire. This project centers t
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Cycles of Renewal: Returning Good Fire to the Chumash Homelands

Fire has always been a part of life in southern California. Climate change and current fire management practices have led to catastrophic losses and impacts to human health, infrastructure and ecosystems, as seen, for example, in the 2018 Montecito debris flow. Indigenous wisdom instructs that rather than suppressing fire, we should seek to be in good relationship with fire. This project centers t
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Improving Water Resilience and Availability Through Culturally Prescribed Fires as a Management Tool on Yurok Tribal Lands

Climate Change is making our environment unpredictable. Increased persistence of drought is causing deaths of plants and animals across our landscapes. However, drought amongst the western United States is not a new thing. Native American populations have been living with drought since time immemorial and practiced culturally prescribed fire practices to foster the landscape for an environment tha
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Improving Water Resilience and Availability Through Culturally Prescribed Fires as a Management Tool on Yurok Tribal Lands

Climate Change is making our environment unpredictable. Increased persistence of drought is causing deaths of plants and animals across our landscapes. However, drought amongst the western United States is not a new thing. Native American populations have been living with drought since time immemorial and practiced culturally prescribed fire practices to foster the landscape for an environment tha
Learn More