"Wild Card" Issues

Leaders need a clear text assessment of future scenarios

With today's release of the Cohesive Strategy, the timing is right to develop a succinct and clear text picture for leaders of what fire management will look like in 10 years under the new National Cohesive Strategy. This scenario should utilize updated trends from past QFRs (climate change, wui, fuels, unstable budgets, declining capability, etc...) and clearly articulate whether we can expect negative wildfire impacts to increase or decrease. Past QFRs did a good job of identifying driving trends, but there have been some significant changes since the last QFR (budget cuts, climate projections, etc...), and neither QFR was able to create a clear text projection of the status quo effects that could be used by our political leaders.

 

In addition, it would be helpful to add a few scenarios based on resolving issues identified in the Cohesive Strategy. A scenario based on significantly increasing the use of landscape scale prescribed fire and fire use would arguably be the best to show how we could proactively manage fire if we could resolve the issues holding us back. Similarly, a scenario based on significantly increasing the utilization of local fire department resources might help inform leaders whether this strategy, without increasing wildland fire agency staffing, will be sufficient to meet our future fire suppression needs.

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Idea No. 34