Forest ThreatNet

Volume 12, Issue 1 - Winter 2018

Fire Scientists and Managers "Ignite Exchange" in the Northeast

Steve_Norman_and_phoenix_in_Portland.jpgCenter research ecologist Steve Norman and Director Danny Lee recently attended a partners' workshop in Portland, ME, to share research that can be applied to fire management in the Northeast. The event, called "Igniting Exchange: Bridging the Gap between Fire Science and Management," was sponsored by the North Atlantic Fire Science Exchange and Northeast Forest Fire Protection Compact. Norman participated in a high-profile panel on the fall 2016 fire that devastated Gatlinburg, TN, along with Henri Grissino-Mayer of the University of Tennessee and Matt Lovitt, a firefighter from Pigeon Forge, TN. His presentation focused on the weather, fuel, ignition, and social factors that combined to create the "perfect storm" of the Chimney Tops 2 Fire that raged through the mountain town in late November. "The insights gained from Gatlinburg may help with response and community preparedness for future exceptional fire events across the East," says Norman. Lee presented on remote sensing for understanding disturbance, highlighting Center tools and research. More than 200 state, private, and federal scientists and managers from the northeastern United States and eastern Canada attended the meeting.

Pictured: The phoenix is a mythical bird that represents resilience after fire. Norman stands beside Portland’s iconic phoenix statue that recalls the city’s rebirth after devastation from fire in 1866. Photo by Steve Norman, U.S. Forest Service.

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