Prescribed burning in the South--a case for the defense
Document Type: Unpublished Work
Author(s): R. W. Cooper
Publication Year: 1969

Cataloging Information

  • air quality
  • carbon dioxide
  • catastrophic fires
  • combustion
  • ecosystem dynamics
  • fire exclusion
  • fire intensity
  • fire management
  • forest management
  • fuel accumulation
  • plant growth
  • pollution
  • public information
  • wildfires
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: August 29, 2019
FRAMES Record Number: 39071
Tall Timbers Record Number: 13698
TTRS Location Status: In-file
TTRS Call Number: Fire File DDW
TTRS Abstract Status: Okay, Fair use, Reproduced by permission

This bibliographic record was either created or modified by the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy and is provided without charge to promote research and education in Fire Ecology. The E.V. Komarek Fire Ecology Database is the intellectual property of the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy.


Prescribed burning, an indispensable tool of forest management through-out much of the South, is accused of being an agent of air pollution. In some instances, a concerted effort is being made to restrict its use. Yet, no one has shown that air quality has deteriorated more in areas where prescribed fire is used extensively than it has where fire is not used. This paper attempts to present the case for the defense. If prescribed fires were to be outlawed, we would be confronted with unbearable management costs, an intolerable fuel situation that would most assuredly lead to catastrophic wildfire situations, and/or a general decline in the productivity of our forest resources. And, we would still have the problems of air pollution; they will not be checked by a suspension of prescribed burning.

Cooper, R. W. 1969. Prescribed burning in the South--a case for the defense.