Title: Economic Impact of Fire Weather Forecasts
Author: Gunasekera, Don; Mills, Graham; Williams, Mark;
Source: In: Aguirre-Bravo, C.; Pellicane, Patrick J.; Burns, Denver P.; and Draggan, Sidney, Eds. 2006. Monitoring Science and Technology Symposium: Unifying Knowledge for Sustainability in the Western Hemisphere Proceedings RMRS-P-42CD. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. p. 633-637
Publication Series: Proceedings (P)
Description: Southeastern Australia, where the State of Victoria is located is regarded as one of the most fire prone areas in the world. The Australian Bureau of Meteorology provides fire weather services in Victoria as part of a national framework for the provision of such services. These services range from fire weather warnings to special forecasts for hazard reduction burns. Fire weather services are important inputs into the decision-making processes of fire management authorities that enable effective decision-making at various stages of fire management. The key beneficiaries of these services are the general community through better information provided to fire management authorities. This paper discusses the fire weather service that is provided by the Bureau of Meteorology and makes an attempt to measure the economic impact of such services for bushfires in Victoria focusing on both costs and benefits. The overall costs will relate to the direct and indirect cost of supplying the fire weather services, the cost of the fire mitigation and management efforts implemented as a consequence of these fire weather services and the cost of fire fighting and relief/recovery initiatives. The benefits will relate to minimization or avoidance of damage to timber assets, private property and public infrastructure, of agricultural production losses, of disruption to other economic activities, of human injury and fatalities; of damage to recreational sites and public amenities, of adverse ecological and environmental impacts, and of adverse effect on public health and general visibility due to smoke dispersion. Some of these benefits will have market values and the others non-market values. The benefit-cost comparisons can provide useful information for improvement of existing fire weather programs and also assist in making decisions on future investments in specific activities.
Keywords: monitoring, assessment, sustainability, Western Hemisphere, sustainable management, ecosystem resources, fire weather forecasts, Southeastern Australia, Australian Bureau of Meteorology
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Gunasekera, Don; Mills, Graham; Williams, Mark 2006. Economic Impact of Fire Weather Forecasts. In: Aguirre-Bravo, C.; Pellicane, Patrick J.; Burns, Denver P.; and Draggan, Sidney, Eds. 2006. Monitoring Science and Technology Symposium: Unifying Knowledge for Sustainability in the Western Hemisphere Proceedings RMRS-P-42CD. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. p. 633-637
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