The economics of prescribed burning: a research review
Document Type: Journal Article
Author(s): H. Hesseln
Publication Year: 2000

Cataloging Information

  • air quality
  • catastrophic fires
  • ecosystem dynamics
  • education
  • fire exclusion
  • fire frequency
  • fire management
  • fire suppression
  • forest management
  • fuel loading
  • logging
  • private lands
  • public information
  • remote sensing
  • thinning
  • US Forest Service
  • wilderness fire management
  • wildland fire management
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: June 1, 2018
FRAMES Record Number: 48323
Tall Timbers Record Number: 24421
TTRS Location Status: In-file
TTRS Call Number: Fire File
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 has, in the past decade, become the focus of debate among policy makers, federal and private land managers, and the public. To manage fire effectively, the USDA Forest Service has formally recognized the need for economic analysis. It is stated in the Federal Wildland Fire Policy of 1995 that fire management alternatives will be based on science and sound ecological and economic principles. This article briefly examines key issues of the Federal Wildland Fire Policy from an economic perspective, and reviews the economic literature pertaining to prescribed burning. In particular, attention is paid to research regarding costs and benefits, efficiency, risk, and the wildland-urban interface. Recommendations for future economic research include focusing on defining a production function that relates economic and ecological outcomes with respect to prescribed fire; assessment of long-term cumulative effects; and finally, a comprehensive assessment of risk including decision making at the agency level. © 2000 Society of American Foresters. Abstract reproduced by permission.

Hesseln, H. 2000. The economics of prescribed burning: a research review. Forest Science, v. 46, no. 3, p. 322-334.