Resource managers, both natural and cultural, need to be at the table when planning for fire. This needs to happen for planned ignitions (prescribed fire) and during incident management. Fire can be a useful tool when it comes to natural and cultural resources.
Fire is an important tool of natural resource managers. In order to properly manage resources, natural resource managers sometimes start fires or permit naturally occurring fires to burn under very specific conditions. A chief concern among resource managers, in addition to protecting life and property, is public reaction. Researchers suggest that while the public understands the beneficial effects of fire, people often are not tolerant of allowing fires to burn a natural course in national parks or forests because of negative effects associated with wildland fire. Other surveys suggest a growing support among the public for new fire management programs, especially when the objectives and significance of fire management are understood.
Greater public understanding of fire’s ecological significance can lead to enactment of appropriate management policies. The most appropriate management practices, coupled with public support, can provide recreational opportunities and other resource uses on public lands for the good of all people.
Last updated: August 28, 2018