Public Perceptions and Tolerance of Smoke from Wildland Fires

Smoke production from fires is a serious land management consideration because it can affect public and firefighter health, impair visibility for road and air traffic, damage property, become a "nuisance," and contribute to air pollution in populated areas that are regulated by EPA air quality standards. However, a very limited amount of research has been conducted specific to public perceptions and tolerance of smoke from wildland fires. Recently the fire management community has called for research to improve the scientific understanding of what factors influence public tolerance of smoke from wildland fires, how people value their personal health and the health of their surrounding ecosystems, especially in circumstances where fire, climate change and increasing populations are interconnecting. This page is dedicated to providing information about current Joint Fire Science Program research specific to public perceptions and tolerance of smoke from wildland fires.

Note: In 2017 the Wildland Fire Leadership Council released the findings from their Wildland Fire Smoke Management and Air Quality Research Gap Forum.