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A wildfire or wildland fire is a fire in an area of combustible vegetation that occurs in the countryside or rural area. Depending on the type of vegetation where it occurs, a wildfire can also be classified more specifically as a brush fire, bush fire, desert fire, forest fire, grass fire, hill fire, peat fire, vegetation fire, or veld fire. Fossil charcoal indicates that wildfires began soon after the appearance of terrestrial plants 420 million years ago. Wildfire’s occurrence throughout the history of terrestrial life invites conjecture that fire must have had pronounced evolutionary effects on most ecosystems' flora and fauna. Earth is an intrinsically flammable planet owing to its cover of carbon-rich vegetation, seasonally dry climates, atmospheric oxygen, and widespread lightning and volcano ignitions.
Wildfires can be characterized in terms of the cause of ignition, their physical properties, the combustible material present, and the effect of weather on the fire. Wildfires can cause damage to property and human life, but they have many beneficial effects on native vegetation, animals, and ecosystems that have evolved with fire. Many plant species depend on the effects of fire for growth and reproduction. However, wildfire in ecosystems where wildfire is uncommon or where non-native vegetation has encroached may have negative ecological effects. Wildfire behaviour and severity result from the combination of factors such as available fuels, physical setting, and weather. Analyses of historical meteorological data and national fire records in western North America show the primacy of climate in driving large regional fires via wet periods that create substantial fuels or drought and warming that extend conducive fire weather.
Strategies of wildfire prevention, detection, and suppression have varied over the years. One common and inexpensive technique is controlled burning: permitting or even igniting smaller fires to minimize the amount of flammable material available for a potential wildfire. Vegetation may be burned periodically to maintain high species diversity and frequent burning of surface fuels limits fuel accumulation. Wildland fire use is the cheapest and most ecologically appropriate policy for many forests. Fuels may also be removed by logging, but fuels treatments and thinning have no effect on severe fire behavior. Wildfire itself is reportedly "the most effective treatment for reducing a fire's rate of spread, fireline intensity, flame length, and heat per unit of area" according to Jan Van Wagtendonk, a biologist at the Yellowstone Field Station. Building codes in fire-prone areas typically require that structures be built of flame-resistant materials and a defensible space be maintained by clearing flammable materials within a prescribed distance from the structure.

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  1. ATCclears

    Plastic pipes used for water, and impact after a wildfire

    https://arstechnica.com/science/2020/12/plastic-pipes-are-polluting-drinking-water-systems-after-wildfires/
  2. ATCclears

    California - PG&E begins to cut power for up to 800,000 Customers

    PG&E said it anticipates the severe weather to last through midday Thursday, with peak winds forecast from Wednesday morning through Thursday morning and reaching 60 to 70 miles an hour at higher elevations. The company has said the shut-offs could last for a number of days and would cover...
  3. CountryGent

    Milepost 97 Fire by Canyonville

    Saw this, and by this I mean the actual fire, on the way in today. Looks like an evac notice for some folks. Article posted about an hour ago from the News-Review. Anyone in the area, stay safe. Canyonville fire spreads, sheriff issues evacuation notice for some residents
  4. RicInOR

    Threat: Wildfire - 1 Billion Acres at Risk 2019

    1 Billion Acres At Risk For Catastrophic Wildfires, U.S. Forest Service Warns
  5. H

    Creating Wildfire Bug Out Bags For Close Neighbors And Friends ...

    Long title. I am now in the process of making up about 4 smaller type wildfire bug out bags for my close neighbors and friends. Seems there was enough stuff already on hand there and here to do most of it. Add some new bottled water and some cheap canned goods and we are nearly there. Some...
  6. CountryGent

    Wildfire Gels?

    I've seen spray-on type gels for the protection of buildings from wildfires. I'm doing some research on the topic and am curious if others are setup with said as part of their preps. And, more specifically, if anyone has ever employed such a chemical application to a building that was...
  7. CountryGent

    Federal Report Says 2017 Shattered US Damage Record for Natural Disasters

    Not surprising considering all that went down last year. News article here: Federal Report Says 2017 Shattered US Damage Record for Natural Disasters I tried finding the report, but NOAA's site just redirects to a boilerplate page saying the gov is shut down. I'll try later, I suppose.
  8. Slobray

    Scent reduction during wildfire season

    I know that there are millions of opinions on scent reduction while hunting, from whether it’s really necessary, all the way to you must be totally scent free, because of my personal experiences, I’m somewhere in the middle……….. Anyway, the smoke blanketing the region and ash raining down from...
  9. ATCclears

    Wildfires in BC

    10,000+ evacuated now. Williams Lake being evacuated as flames get closer; residents en route to Kamloops - Kamloops This Week In a different area of BC, multiple communities may lose their electricity. If it goes down, it will probably be out for at least a month. Wildfire threatens North...
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