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Title: Chapter 10 - Using simulation modeling to assess historical reference conditions for vegetation and fire regimes for the LANDFIRE Prototype Project

Author: Pratt, Sarah; Holsinger, Lisa; Keane, Robert E.;

Date: 2006

Source: In: Rollins, Matthew G.; Frame, Christine K., tech. eds. 2006. The LANDFIRE Prototype Project: nationally consistent and locally relevant geospatial data for wildland fire management Gen. Tech. Rep. RMRS-GTR-175. Fort Collins: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. p. 277-314

Publication Series: General Technical Report (GTR)

   Note: This article is part of a larger document. View the larger document

Description: A critical component of the Landscape Fire and Resource Management Planning Tools Prototype Project, or LANDFIRE Prototype Project, was the development of a nationally consistent method for estimating historical reference conditions for vegetation composition and structure and wildland fire regimes. These estimates of past vegetation composition and condition are used as a baseline for evaluating current landscape conditions in terms of ecological departure from historical conditions (Landres and others 1999). Simulated historical fire regime characteristics provide managers with information for designing and evaluating hazardous fuel treatments in which the objective is to restore landscapes to nearhistorical reference conditions (Keane and Rollins, Ch. 3). In LANDFIRE, simulated historical conditions are used to characterize the departure of current landscapes using Fire Regime Condition Class (FRCC) calculations (Hann and Bunnell 2001) and other measures of ecological departure (Holsinger and others, Ch. 11). Previously, Schmidt and others (2002) produced fire regime and departure information on a nationwide basis at a 1-km resolution; this effort used existing broad-scale spatial data and a rule-based approach to assign fire regimes and FRCC to mapped biophysical settings across the United States. The LANDFIRE Prototype methods used the Landscape Succession Model version 4.0 (LANDSUMv4), a spatially explicit fire and vegetation dynamics simulation model, to simulate disturbance and succession dynamics over a simulation period of thousands of years (Keane and others 2006). The model uses pathways of successional transitions and disturbance effects stratified by unique biophysical settings, called potential vegetation types (PVTs), across the simulation landscape to produce estimates of historical reference conditions for fire frequency, fire severity, and vegetation conditions. This chapter describes the model and how it was used to generate historical reference conditions of vegetation and fire regimes for the LANDFIRE Prototype Project.

Keywords: mapping wildland fuel, mapping fire regimes, Geographic Information Systems, GIS, remote sensing, fire ecology, fire behavior, wildland fire management

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Pratt, Sarah; Holsinger, Lisa; Keane, Robert E. 2006. Chapter 10 - Using simulation modeling to assess historical reference conditions for vegetation and fire regimes for the LANDFIRE Prototype Project. In: Rollins, Matthew G.; Frame, Christine K., tech. eds. 2006. The LANDFIRE Prototype Project: nationally consistent and locally relevant geospatial data for wildland fire management Gen. Tech. Rep. RMRS-GTR-175. Fort Collins: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. p. 277-314

 


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