IAWF Article Highlights SW CASC California Wildfire Synthesis

Aug. 28, 2023
Wildfire damaged trees and smoke

In a new article in Wildfire Magazine, published by the International Association of Wildland Fire, SW CASC authors summarize major drivers of changing wildfire dynamics in California. The article, “Drivers of California’s Changing Wildfires: State has Potential to be a Model for Change,” addresses how wildfire and land cover have changed since 1980, the role of climate change, and the role of historic and current management policy on California fire regimes. The article also includes a detailed infographic (Figure 1), which visually summarizes the article information.

Graphic of area burned and number of wildfires in California from 1980-2020

Figure 1 – FireConsensusV7

This newly published article serves as a companion to a more in-depth research synthesis published in May 2023 in the International Journal of Wildland Fire, titled, “Drivers of California’s changing wildfires: a state-of-the-knowledge synthesis.” Additional information about the research can be found in a SW CASC news announcement here

Publication of the wildfire synthesis also received coverage from the University of California, Los Angeles. Read more and hear from some of the authors in the UCLA press release here. Additionally, an interview with three of the authors, Tamara Wall (Desert Research Institute), Glen MacDonald (UCLA), and Carolyn Enquist (USGS), was featured on the August episode of the Come Rain or Shine Podcast, “A Closer Look at California Wildfires.”

Wildfire is an inherent part of California’s landscapes and it will likely increase throughout the 21st century making fire adaptation an essential piece in sustaining human development in California, especially at the wildland-urban interface. Through the state-of-the-knowledge synthesis, companion article in Wildfire Magazine, and other media coverage, explore the past, present, and future of fire management in California.