Engaging the fire before it starts: A case study from the 2017 Pinal Fire (Arizona)
How did the forest and community get to the point where they were willing to take on managing a fire of this size and duration for resource benefit and hazard reduction? Science has recognized for decades that many forested ecosystems of the American West are shifting away from historically fire-adapted conditions. Beginning in the 1970’s a small handful of managers recognized this issue and developed wildland fire use concepts. However, in the current era of increasing encroachment of human development, climate change, and accumulated fuels, uncertain outcomes have emphasized the default response of aggressive suppression.