This strategic plan is a technical discussion of the implementation and development of models and data systems used to manage the air quality impacts of wildland and prescribed fires. Strategies and priorities in the plan were generated by the Express Team (chartered by the National Wildfire Coordinating Group) and a diverse group of 86 subject matter experts who attended a national planning workshop.
Air pollution from fires used to manage ecosystems is an issue in many parts of the country. Land managers are rapidly expanding the use of fire for managing ecosystems, while air resource managers are accelerating efforts to reduce the impacts of fires on air quality. This plan provides a conceptual design as a first step toward balancing these goals, identifies information needs to support management and policy development, and identifies strategies for developing and implementing models and data systems. The conceptual design was based around a three-dimensional array of air resource components and fire management components at various project scales. This array was reduced to nine program elements, each with a description of their scope, current situation, desired state, and strategies to reach that state.
The Express Team recommends nine summary strategies as a synthesis of internal discussions, review comments, and proceedings of the national workshop. The strategies recommended relate to:
Fuel and fire characterization
Emission modeling systems
Transport, dispersion, and secondary pollutant formation
Air quality impact assessment
Emissions tradeoffs and determination of natural visibility
Impact and risk assessment of emissions from fires
Monitoring guidelines and protocols
National fire and air quality information database
Sandberg, David V.; Hardy, Colin C.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Snell, J.A. Kendall; Acheson, Ann; Peterson, Janice L.; Seamon, Paula; Lahm, Peter; Wade, Dale. 1999. National strategic plan: modeling and data systems for wildland fire and air quality. Gen. Tech. Rep. PNW-GTR-450. Portland, OR: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station. 60 p