Publication:
FORESTRY AND FIRE MANAGEMENT IN THE WEST: A DYNAMIC HOMELAND SECURITY ENEMY

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Authors
Lehrke, Sabrina L.
Subjects
wildfires
forestry and fire management
western U.S.
climate change
human activity
United States Forest Service
Arizona
California
Alaska
community involvement
technology
Advisors
Mackin, Thomas J.
Fletcher, Kristen
Date of Issue
2022-12
Date
Publisher
Monterey, CA; Naval Postgraduate School
Language
Abstract
This thesis answers two questions: How has the difference between western states’ forestry and fire management practices affected wildland fire response and how can forestry and fire management stakeholders address wildfire scale and frequency in the western United States? Through a comparative analysis approach, the research presented in this thesis showcases three western states (Arizona, California, and Alaska) to offer a glimpse at similar wildfire behavior and impacts across the West. Thus, the research provided in this thesis applies to most western states and underscores the point that resiliency against wildfires is imperative to ensuring the protection of the nation’s natural resources, communities, and critical infrastructure. As a result, this thesis offers four recommendations that include community involvement, the allocation and utilization of resources (i.e., personnel, equipment, and technology), immediate action from policymakers, and examination of alternative solutions (i.e., technology and “Smokey the Beaver”). In all, the wildfire threat will continue to evolve in the United States, especially in the West, so action must be taken, and solutions must be identified for years to come to mitigate wildfire impacts on forests, communities, and critical infrastructure.
Type
Thesis
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Department
National Security Affairs (CHDS)
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Distribution Statement
Approved for public release. Distribution is unlimited.
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Copyright is reserved by the copyright owner.
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