Next Article in Journal
Assessing the Relationship between Forest Structure and Fire Severity on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon
Previous Article in Journal
Correspondence: Uncertainty in Climate-Vegetation Feedbacks on Fire Regimes Challenges Reliable Long-Term Projections of Burnt Area from Correlative Models
Article Menu
Issue 1 (March) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessCase Report

A Socio-Ecological Approach to Mitigating Wildfire Vulnerability in the Wildland Urban Interface: A Case Study from the 2017 Thomas Fire

1
Department of Forest, Rangeland, and Fire Sciences, University of Idaho, 875 Perimeter Dr. MS 1133, Moscow, ID 83844, USA
2
Geo Elements, LLC, Leeds, UT 84746, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 12 January 2019 / Revised: 2 February 2019 / Accepted: 8 February 2019 / Published: 11 February 2019
Full-Text   |   PDF [6374 KB, uploaded 28 February 2019]   |  

Abstract

Wildfire disasters are one of the many consequences of increasing wildfire activities globally, and much effort has been made to identify strategies and actions for reducing human vulnerability to wildfire. While many individual homeowners and communities have enacted such strategies, the number subjected to a subsequent wildfire is considerably lower. Furthermore, there has been limited documentation on how mitigation strategies impact wildfire outcomes across the socio-ecological spectrum. Here we present a case report documenting wildfire vulnerability mitigation strategies undertaken by the community of Montecito, California, and how such strategies addressed exposure, sensitivity, and adaptive capacity. We utilize geospatial data, recorded interviews, and program documentation to synthesize how those strategies subsequently impacted the advance of the 2017 Thomas Fire on the community of Montecito under extreme fire danger conditions. Despite the extreme wind conditions and interviewee estimates of potentially hundreds of homes being consumed, only seven primary residences were destroyed by the Thomas Fire, and firefighters indicated that pre-fire mitigation activities played a clear, central role in the outcomes observed. This supports prior findings that community partnerships between agencies and citizens are critical for identifying and implementing place-based solutions to reducing wildfire vulnerability. View Full-Text
Keywords: hazard; California; vulnerability; fuel treatment; exposure; adaptive capacity; defensible space; wildland-urban interface; sensitivity hazard; California; vulnerability; fuel treatment; exposure; adaptive capacity; defensible space; wildland-urban interface; sensitivity
Figures

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
SciFeed

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Kolden, C.A.; Henson, C. A Socio-Ecological Approach to Mitigating Wildfire Vulnerability in the Wildland Urban Interface: A Case Study from the 2017 Thomas Fire. Fire 2019, 2, 9.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Fire EISSN 2571-6255 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top