Fuel consumption and flammability thresholds in shrub-dominated ecosystems - Proposal to the Joint Fire Science Program
Document Type: Proposal
Author(s): Clinton S. Wright; Roger D. Ottmar; Sue A. Ferguson; Robert E. Vihnanek
Publication Year: 2003

Cataloging Information

  • FERA - Fire and Environmental Research Applications Team
  • fire management
  • fuel consumption
  • fuel flammability
  • land management planning
  • shrub dominated ecosystems
JFSP Project Number(s):
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: December 13, 2016
FRAMES Record Number: 6744


Research to quantify fuel consumption and flammability in shrub-dominated ecosystems has received little attention despite the widespread occurrence of fire-influenced, shrub-dominated landscapes across the arid lands of the western United States. While some research has addressed issues relating to fire behavior in some shrub-dominated ecosystems, quantification of fuel consumption is critical for effective modeling of fire effects (e.g., smoke emissions, regional haze, erosion, plant succession, etc.) and landscape management. Preliminary research in this arena has generated hypotheses as to the controlling mechanisms for fuel consumption in shrub fuel types that require testing through field-based experimentation. The primary objective of this proposed research is to improve existing fuel consumption models for sagebrush fuel types and to develop new models for additional shrub-dominated fuel types for incorporation into a module for, or a new version of the software package CONSUME. This research will also address issues related to seasonal live fuel moisture and weather patterns and their relations to flammability in shrub-dominated fuel types. Making fuel and fire management decision support tools, such as CONSUME, more robust will aid managers, planners and researchers in developing environmentally, socially and legally responsible land management plans. This research will allow for more effective and informed use of fire behavior, fire effects, emission production and wildfire/prescribed fire trade-off models providing for better wildland fire emissions and fire effects accounting and planning at local, regional, national and global scales.

Online Link(s):
Link to this document (87 KB; pdf)
Wright, Clinton S.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Ferguson, Sue A.; Vihnanek, Robert E. 2003. Fuel consumption and flammability thresholds in shrub-dominated ecosystems-Proposal to the Joint Fire Science Program. JFSP Project No. 03-1-3-06. Seattle, WA: USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station, Pacific Wildland Fire Sciences Laboratory, Fire and Environmental Research Applications (FERA) Team. 9 p.