In recent years, wildland fires have become more widespread with significant ecological, social, and economic impact. Fewer than 5% of all fires account for the majority of area burned and costs of suppression. This interdisciplinary research project funded by the NASA-IDS program is entitled, ''Quantifying the biogeoscientific and societal impacts of extreme wildland fires,'' from the regional to community scales in the US northern Rockies.
Several challenges and uncertainties exist related to the magnitude, duration, and drivers of extreme wildland fire events, and their
wider impacts (temporal trajectories and spatial characteristics) and feedbacks with biogeoscientific and societal processes.
The 38 fires identified as potentially extreme based on the intersection of three or more fire criteria of high burn severity (B),
size (S), duration (D) and wildland–urban interface (W) (Results presented in Lannom et al., 2013).