Researchers from the US Forest Service provide a risk management framework for the WUI

Blog Post created by hyltonhaynes Employee on Feb 3, 2014

I highly recommend any WUI professional or homeowner to review this interesting research paper.  This thought provoking research paper presents a pathway to 'effective and efficient' action and breaks down the wildfire paradox versus perpetuating it. This research paper is extremely helpful in defining a decision-making process that is specific and outcome focused.

According to the authors “If our problem statement is defined a keeping wildfires out of the WUI, it is unobtainable, and large wildfires and residential disasters will continue, and likely increase.  Fuel treatments do not stop fires (just change behavior), and treatment alone without Home Ignition Zone [HIZ] treatment means that the inevitable wildfire exposure will result in structure loss……..By contrast, if the problem is identified as a home ignition, mitigation of the HIZ is the most cost-effective investment for reducing home destruction, and this can be augmented with other investments.” (Calkin etal, 2013 p 5-6).


Figure 1: Conceptual model highlighting the major fundamental objectives (level 1), means-based objectives (levels 2 & 3), and action for reducing the risk of home loss as a result of wildfire (Calkin et al, 2013).