2012 fire season wrap up & 2013 outlook - Clark Fork Basin

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Alyssa Stewart, Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation Summarizes the 2012 Northern Rockies Geographical Area fire season and provides an outlook for 2013. Presentation provide at the Clark Fork River Basin Water Summary 2012 & Water Outlook 2013 held October 23, 2012.

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2012 fire season wrap up & 2013 outlook - Clark Fork Basin

  1. 1. 2012 Fire Season Wrap-up & 2013 Outlook Alyssa Stewart DNRC Assistant Center Manager, HIDC astewart@mt.gov 406-449-5475
  2. 2. The Northern Rockies Geographic AreaNorthern Idaho, Montana, Yellowstone National Park, North Dakota and a smallportion of South Dakota.
  3. 3. http://gacc.nifc.gov/nrcc
  4. 4. 2012 Fire Cause: 60% human, 40% lightning, on par with 10-yr average, 58% human, 42% lightningSo far in 2012 there have been 3,272 fires for 1,407,026 acres, including 159 large fires in the NRGA – at least one every month except February.
  5. 5. Clark Fork River Basin An estimated 527 fires for 148,154 acres burned in the Clark Fork River Basin. This is 16% of the fires and 11% of the total acres burned in the NRGA.
  6. 6. Why was 2012 a record year in the NRGA? Very dry & hot June, September driest in MT history. Very convectiveSpring was summer. dry!2011-2012 snowpacknormal to a little less 100-hr and 1000-hr fuel moistures largely 2011 Fall a little dry below normal and but not too bad. set new minimums
  7. 7. Energy Release Component & 1000-hr Fuel Graphs by Predictive Service AreaEnergy Release Component (ERC): Composite value that relates fuel moisture to potential heat release per unit of flaming area, predictor of fire intensity – how hot a fire could burn. Based on worst case scenario.All graphs for Fuel Model G, dense conifer – includes 1000 hour fuels that areless susceptible to daily weather changes like a flashy fuel – national standard.
  8. 8. Northern Panhandle Idaho/Northwest Montana
  9. 9. Southern Panhandle Idaho/Western Montana
  10. 10. North Central Idaho/Southwest Montana
  11. 11. Glacier National Park/Wildernesses
  12. 12. Big Hole Montana
  13. 13. Fire danger takes current and previous weather, fuel type, and live and dead fuel moisture into account.
  14. 14. 2013 Outlook?

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