So humans suppress the small fires, and brush builds up, providing extra fuel that could turn the next fire into a really big, devastating one, Kasischke says.
"There are lots of factors that turn a small fire into a big one, and we don't understand all of them yet," Kasischke says.
Now, with broken branches littering the ground and small understory trees growing thickly together, allowing fire to easily climb into the crowns of mature trees, simply reintroducing fire into
the ecosystem is not an option.
Winds can quickly whip a "contained" fire into
In a December 1995 memorandum, the secretaries of agriculture and the interior wrote, "The philosophy, as well as the specific policies and recommendations, of the report continues to move our approach to wildland fire management beyond the traditional realms of fire suppression by further integrating fire into
the management of our lands and resources in an ongoing and systematic manner, consistent with public health and environmental quality considerations."
In addition to the damage to adjacent buildings and structures, damage to utility systems such as gas or oil piping and power lines can quickly turn a fire into
a true disaster.
That crash was apparently caused when the oxygen from a load of mislabeled canisters placed in the plane's cargo hold fanned an electrical fire into
a fatal white-hot conflagration.
At Storm King, the 80km per hour (50mph) winds blew the tame fire into
And now comes "prescribed fire." It seems a bit odd that today we marvel over our newfound ability to reintroduce fire into
our forests - something many generations of our predecessors knew all about.
The time is now at hand to expand this proven federal/state partnership beyond fire exclusion to the broader objective of introducing fire into
the landscape as a routine management tool.