Feb. 27-March 1, 2012
Santa Fe, New Mexico


The Interagency Fuels Treatment Decision Support System (IFTDSS) Introduction and Demonstration

Monday, February 27: Morning (8 a.m.-noon)

Workshop Instructors: H. Michael Rauscher (Joint Fire Science Technical Lead, IFTDSS Development Project) and Stacy Drury (Fire Ecologist, Sonoma Technology Inc., IFTDSS Development Project)

The Interagency Fuels Treatment Decision Support System (IFTDSS) is a web-based, software integration framework that manages pre-existing and newly developed software base models and their associated data to analyze and support decisions about fuels management to mitigate wildfire risk.

In 2006, the Joint Fire Science Program Governing Board concluded that one of the most pressing problems in the field of fire and fuels management from an interagency perspective is the confusion and uncertainty around existing software systems.  Managers responsible for implementing fire and fuels programs face an assortment of unconnected software tools in various stages of development with little guidance concerning the strengths and weaknesses of the various systems, and no framework for integration and fusion of data and outputs from these systems.  In March 2007, the Joint Fire Science Program authorized a research program to develop a first generation software integration framework to assist the user.  This process led to the creation of the Interagency Fuels Treatment Decision Support System (IFTDSS).

Extensive field user input over the last 3 years resulted in the identification of five workflow processes: (1) Prescribed Burn Planning and Plan Development; (2) Wildfire Hazard Analysis across a landscape of interest; (3) Landscape Wildfire Risk Assessment for Current Conditions; (4) Landscape Risk Assessment for Simulated and Treated Future Landscape Conditions; and (5) Assessing Fuels Treatment Effectiveness over Time.  IFTDSS version 1.1 contains workflows 1, 2, and 3 described above. 

The objectives of this workshop are to introduce the IFTDSS software by demonstrating the various workflows to perform common tasks facing fuels management professionals.  Workflow Processes 1, 2 and 3 will be highlighted during this workshop.

Attendees to the IFTDSS workshop are encouraged to bring their own laptop computers so that as many attendees as possible will get hands-on experience using IFTDSS. 

Monitoring Trends in Burn Severity (MTBS):
Assessing Fires in the Southwestern US

Monday, February 27: Morning (8 a.m.-noon)


Workshop Instructors: Steve Howard (U.S. Geological Survey Earth Resources Observation and Science Center), Josh Picotte (U.S. Geological Survey Earth Resources Observation and Science Center), Brad Quayle (USDA Forest Service Remote Sensing Applications Center), and Eric Gdula (National Park Service, Grand Canyon NP)

Participants will learn about the MTBS geospatial data available for characterizing fire effects. The workshop will provide an overview of the MTBS project, fire mapping and assessment protocols, data products, and how to obtain MTBS data and utilize the project website.

Participants will also learn how to apply MTBS burn severity data to address specific user needs, integrate and analyze these data with local GIS map layers, and how this information can support management decisions. The course will also instruct participants on interpretation and limitations of MTBS data, and the appropriate application of the data in the context of management decisions. Information will also be provided on current efforts to consolidate and provide access to field validation data by users.

Fire History and Fire Climatology: Data, Tools, and Applications

Monday, February 27: Afternoon (1-5 p.m.)


Workshop Instructors: Peter Brown (Director, Rocky Mountain Tree-Ring Research), Elaine Kennedy Sutherland (Research Biologist, Rocky Mountain Research Station - Missoula), Tom Swetnam (Director and Professor, Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research - University of Arizona), and Don Falk (Professor, School of Natural Resources and the Environment - University of Arizona)

The workshop will provide hands-on experience with obtaining existing online fire history data and how to use several tools for data analysis and presentation. The focus will be on understanding, interpreting, and using fire history data for management applications, e.g., ecological or vegetation assessments, forest plans, or project level planning needs.  Data and tools to be covered include the International Multiproxy Paleofire Database (IMPD), an online repository for fire history data sets; the Fire History Analysis and Exploration System (FHAES), a tool for analyzing and displaying data sets from the IMPD and other sources; the Fire History and Climate Change (FHCC) reference database, an annotated bibliography of fire regime information across the US;  and the Fire and Climate Synthesis (FACS) project, an ongoing effort to develop and apply understanding of fire/climate relationships to management needs across western North America. The workshop will begin with a description of types of fire history data sets, how they are collected and analyzed, and some issues with interpretation and use of the data.  This will be followed by hands-on exploration of programs and data.  Participants should bring their laptops to the workshop to explore the tools and databases we will cover.

The Wildland Fire Assessment Tool (WFAT) – A Tool to Spatially Model Wildland Fire Behavior and First Order Fire Effects

Monday, February 27: Afternoon (1-5 p.m.)

Workshop Instructors: National Interagency Fuels, Fire, and Vegetation Tech Transfer teaching team—Jeff Jones (USFS Fire and Aviation Management, Washington Office) and Eva Strand (NIFTT, University of Idaho, Moscow, Idaho)

WFAT provides an interface between ArcMap, FlamMap, and the First Order Fire Effects Model (FOFEM), combining their strengths into a spatial fire behavior and fire effects analysis tool. WFAT streamlines analysis by eliminating the need to convert data between multiple formats (e.g., ASCII grids and ArcGRIDS) and by deriving both fire behavior and fire effects outputs from a single run.  

The workshop will begin with a presentation describing the WFAT tool, followed by a live demonstration of the tool. Exercises will demonstrate the application of WFAT to identify hazardous fuels, prioritize, design and evaluate fuel treatment projects, develop fuel treatment prescriptions, and predict fire behavior and effects for planning documents. Participants desiring hands-on experience using their own computer, are encouraged to install WFAT on their computers prior to the workshop. The WFAT tool can be downloaded from www.niftt.gov under Tools and User Documents. Software, user guide, tutorial, and example data sets will be provided at the workshop.


RX 310 Introduction to Fire Effects

Monday, February 27 to Thursday, March 1, 2012

Course Coordinator: (Regional Fire Ecologist, USFS R3 FAM)
This course is designed to provide students with the knowledge and skills necessary to recognize and communicate the relationships between basic fire regimes and first order fire effects, the effects of fire treatments on first order fire effects, and to manipulate fire treatments to achieve desired first order fire effects.

Students will attend an 8-hour seminar on Monday, February 27 to receive introductory instruction in fire ecology, fire effects, and ecosystem dynamics.  Students will have already completed pre-work concerning basic fire ecology as well as examining how fire ecology and fire effects are incorporated into resource management on their home units.  As the week and Conference proceeds, students will participate fully in the conference, armed with a series of questions and discussion topics to be addressed during Plenary, State of Science Sections and roundtable discussions.  They will also have two brief evening sessions when they will meet with assigned cadre members to address questions and discussion topics, helping them to more fully understand class and conference information.  Their week will end with a class session/close-out and assignment of a follow-up project at their home unit which will require them to meet and discuss fire effects on an ongoing project with an agency resource professional outside the fire management arena.