National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy

PARTNERS: USDA Forest Service Western Wildland Environmental Threat Assessment Center and Rocky Mountain Research Station; University of North Carolina Asheville's National Environmental Modeling and Analysis Center (NEMAC)

SUMMARY: The past two decades have witnessed a rapid escalation of extreme wildfire behavior, accompanied by significant increases in risk to responders and citizens, home and property losses, costs, and threats to communities and landscapes. In the Federal Land Assistance, Management, and Enhancement Act of 2009 (FLAME Act), Congress mandated the development of a national cohesive wildland fire management strategy (Cohesive Strategy) to comprehensively address wildland fire management across all lands in the United States. The Cohesive Strategy establishes a national vision for wildland fire management, defines three national goals, describes the wildland fire challenges, identifies opportunities to reduce wildfire risks, and establishes national priorities focused on achieving the national goals. In order to better integrate scientific understanding and rigor into the Cohesive Strategy, the National Science and Analysis Team (NSAT) was formed to support development and implementation of the Cohesive Strategy. From 2010 to 2016, more than sixty people representing numerous agencies and organizations contributed to the NSAT’s efforts. A smaller core group was tasked with the more data intensive tasks and provided direct support to various other planning teams.

EFETAC'S ROLE: Eastern Threat Center Director Danny C. Lee served as co-leader of the NSAT and regularly consults with various partners regarding implementation. Center scientists Steve Norman and Bill Christie also were heavily involved with the science and analysis team supporting this effort. NEMAC is continuing to provide additional technical and data management support for implementation through a cooperative agreement with the Eastern Threat Center.

STATUS: As the Cohesive Strategy moved from planning to implementation, scientists from the Eastern Threat Center and elsewhere continued to provide analytical support to national and regional committees.

PROGRESS: The planning phases of the Cohesive Strategy culminated with publication of “The National Strategy: The Final Phase in the Development of the National Cohesive Wildland Fire Strategy.” This report provides strategic national direction across all lands and uses much of the information generated by the NSAT. The analytical basis for the National Strategy comes from information originally assembled and used within the regional analyses, which was reanalyzed from a national perspective along with supplemental national information. The net result is greater consistency and specificity in understanding national challenges, their underlying causes, and the management opportunities available to address them. The work of the NSAT is described in the reports available through the links below.


The Science Analysis of the National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy

The National Strategy: The Final Phase in the Development of the National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy

The National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy and Risk Analysis - Phase III Report (DRAFT)

Regional Risk Analysis Reports: Phase III Science-Based Reports

Scientific Basis for Modeling Wildland Fire Management: The Phase II Report of the National Science and Analysis Team

A National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy (Phase I Report)

Forests and Rangelands

Wildland Fire in the South outreach cards (PDFs):


CONTACT: Danny C. Lee, Eastern Threat Center Director, or (828) 257-4854

Updated June 2017

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