A Timing-Oriented Approach to Spatial Allocation of Fire Management Effort

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This article explores spatial optimization approaches to fire (and possibly fuel) management problems, with a timing-oriented model formulation. The relevant land area is divided into cells, and the ignition time of “protection areas” (such as towns, homes, and campgrounds) is delayed as much as possible through spatial application of treatments that have the effect of slowing the fire front movement through each cell. Model variables track the entry and exit times of the fire front and account for the earliest ignition source for each cell. A stylized case example is used to demonstrate the model's application and spatial sensitivity with easily interpretable results. The results show that a spatial concentration of fire management effort may not be optimal, at least for the simple example analyzed. Extension of the model formulation to long-term fuels management is also discussed. FOR. SCI. 46(3): 442–451.

Keywords: Linear programming; environmental management; forest; forest management; forest resources; forestry; forestry research; forestry science; fuels management; ignition delay; integer programming; natural resource management; natural resources

Document Type: Miscellaneous

Affiliations: 1: Research Foresters Rocky Mountain Research Station, USDA Forest Service, 2150A Centre Ave, Fort Collins, CO, 80526, Phone: (970) 295-5977 jhof/rmrs@fs.fed.us 2: Professors Department of Forest Science, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO, 80523, Phone: (970) 491-6911 phil@cnr.colostate.edu

Publication date: August 1, 2000

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