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Janet Hoyt, Sanborn, jhoyt@sanborn.com (Presenter)

 

Wildfire risk in the western U.S. is increasing and becoming a more complex challenge that warrants coordinated assessment, planning and response. Sanborn is currently leading the West Wide Wildfire Risk Assessment (WWA), a wildland fire risk assessment of all lands for the 17 western states and selected Pacific Islands. The WWA documents the risk from wildfire by quantifying the magnitude of the current wildland fire problem in the west. The WWA is unique because it assesses all lands across the west using consistent data and methods, therefore providing information to support planning and decision making at national, regional, state and local scales. The project uses one standard method to model and summarize wildfire threat, fire effects and wildfire risk. The project has been completed in collaboration with the states, with state input and feedback provided throughout the project. With the first phase of the assessment expected to be completed in the spring of 2012, this project will result in a wealth of data being delivered to the states. These WWA results will provide a foundation for coordinating policy and baseline data for state and county level planning in the West, especially for those states with limited resources. Sanborn will provide an overview of the assessment and its results, highlight some of the data that was developed for the project, and discuss possible applications of the WWA.