Here is the response from the Fire and Forest Ecosystem Health Team to your
comments/questions dated 3/18/10:
George: 1. " If SNAMP is limited to a focus on "the forest management
alternative approved in the 2004 Record of Decision," how can it be an example
of "adaptive" management? In any case, you've already gone beyond the SPLAT
strategy of the 2004 ROD by including a DFPZ example in the meta-analysis, and
that is entirely proper, because the 2004 ROD acknowledged and supported the
demonstration of the DFPZ strategy mandated by the HFQLG Forest Recovery Act.
It's apparent that Congress intended that strategy to be taken seriously as a
candidate for wider application."
UCST: The land management alternatives that the USFS is proposing for the SNAMP
project is under the 2004 Record of Decision. SNAMP also thought it would be a
good idea to work to integrate other studies in some disciplines to produce a
broader assessment of the topic. The first such study was on landscape fire
behavior and effects. This effort summarized what had been done independently in
other areas of the Sierra. We continue to work on the SNAMP fire modeling since
this is our present charge but wont work any more on the additional projects.
George: 2a) "I agree that "a more fruitful exercise" can and should be the next
step. But it should not be to compare implemented DFPZs to a theoretical SPLAT
design. Since it isn't possible to implement both DFPZs and SPLATs on the same
ground, the most useful direct comparisons would be theoretical to theoretical,
which would not only be a fairer comparison,it would permit manipulation of both
DFPZs and SPLATs over a range of conditions and assumptions. For example, what
performance is delivered by
each theory when different percentages of the landscape have been treated? When
the first 10% is treated? Then another 10% added? Then another 10% added?"
UCST: This is a good idea but outside the of the SNAMP study.
George: 2b)" One of the largest differences that could be expected to show up
would be how safely and effectively fire suppression would be supported by
various implementations of each strategy.
There should also be comparisons under strict and less strict rules
regarding where and when management activity is permitted. Those comparisons are
needed to support management decisions on how best to adapt to rapidly changing
conditions, such as climate change and water supply effects, when balances must
be established among competing priorities."
UCST: The SNAMP study is focusing on what the Tahoe and Sierra National Forests
are proposing related to fuels treatments in their firesheds. We will work to
include fire suppression modeling in our evaluations. Other ideas above are
outside the present effort.
George: 2c) "Finally, there should be comparisons of economic effects from
implementing each strategy, because the amount of treatment that can be done is
limited by the cost efficiency of the management activity, and the availability
of the workforce and industrial infrastructure to do the huge amount of work
required also depends on the economic practicality and efficiency of management
UCST: Economic analysis has been a topic brought up before regarding the SNAMP
study but it is not included in the approved work-plan and is therefore outside
of the current effort.
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