Vegetation Management

Home What is FireSmart? Understanding FireSmart Seven FireSmart disciplines Vegetation Management

About FireSmart Vegetation Management

Vegetation management, broadly speaking, is the augmentation of wildland fuels (vegetation that can contribute to wildfire is known simply as ‘fuel’) for the purpose of mitigating the potential intensities and impact of wildfire. Intuitively vegetation management as a strategy for reducing wildfire hazard makes sense: wildfire requires fuel, in the form of vegetation, to burn; if we can augment the fuel, we can augment the wildfire.

Projects can serve many different purposes: they can reduce wildfire intensity, severity and rate of spread, they can provide a strategic tool for incident management teams responding to wildfires near neighbourhoods and they can also additionally provide areas within a neighbourhood to promote education around wildfire and the principles of FireSmart.

Fuel treatments can be moderate or intensive depending on the intended objectives of a government agency, neighbourhood or homeowner implementing them.

In general, vegetation management can be carried out in three different ways: fuel removal, fuel reduction and fuel conversion. All fuel treatments will generally incorporate some combination of these three methodologies. Fuel treatments may also range from many hectares in size to specific trees and ground debris, depending on the objectives and scale of the project.

Fuel Removal – flammable vegetation is removed. For example removing mature spruce trees adjacent to ones home.

Fuel Reduction – flammable vegetation is lessened. Examples pruning, thinning, mowing, grazing, mulching, hazard reduction burning or pile burning.

Species Conversion – removal of flammable species and replace with less flammable species. Example is replacing conifers with deciduous species.

Reducing, removing and converting combustible vegetation within the home ignition zone on our private properties is critically important.

More than 90% of homes damaged or destroyed by wildfires are ignited by embers. Maintaining a 1.5 metre non-combustible surface around your entire home will reduce the chance of wind-blown embers igniting materials near your home.