Foreword: Managing a public problem from the bottom down

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There is substantial loss of life and property in the wild land urban interface areas that burn in the US. But there are many risks from fire even in unoccupied areas. Most western landscapes were altered profoundly in the effort to eradicate the ineradicable, creating a mosaic of fire regime conditions. Some forest types like Southwest ponderosa pine which are adapted to frequent, low-intensity surface fires are amenable to a range of fire suppression tactics. The Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management (BLM) have been developing wildfire and fuel models for years, most notably a model-compiling system known as LANDFIRE, to assess and compare fire risks. Ecological systems have their own temporal rhythms and spatial distributions. The culturally-formed identities, institutions, and jurisdictions have theirs. The uptake of learning or speculation from one place into a central government that then sets policy for all places must proceed with extreme caution in this planning environment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)121-128
Number of pages8
JournalPenn State Environmental Law Review
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 1 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Law


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