Fire has historically played a fundamental ecological role in many of America's wildland areas. However, the rising number of homes in the wildland-urban interface (WUI), associated impacts on lives and property from wildfire, and escalating costs of wildfire management have led to an urgent need for communities to become "fire-adapted." We present maps of the conterminous United States that illustrate historical natural fire regimes, the wildland-urban interface, and the number and location of structures burned since 1999. We outline a sampler of actions, programs, and community planning and development options to help decrease the risks of and damages from wildfire.
Stein, S. M.; Menakis, J.; Carr, M. A.; Comas, S. J.; Stewart, S. I.; Cleveland, H.; Bramwell, L.; Radeloff, V. C. 2013. Wildfire, wildlands, and people: understanding and preparing for wildfire in the wildland-urban interface - a Forests on the Edge report. Gen. Tech. Rep. RMRS-GTR-299. Fort Collins, CO. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. 36 p.