Preprint Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

Fuel Treatments and Potential Fire Behavior in Peri-Urban Forests, N. Greece

Version 1 : Received: 25 May 2018 / Approved: 25 May 2018 / Online: 25 May 2018 (13:53:53 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Samara, T.; Raptis, D.; Spanos, I. Fuel Treatments and Potential Fire Behavior in Peri-Urban Forests in Northern Greece. Environments 2018, 5, 79. Samara, T.; Raptis, D.; Spanos, I. Fuel Treatments and Potential Fire Behavior in Peri-Urban Forests in Northern Greece. Environments 2018, 5, 79.

Journal reference: Environments 2018, 5, 79
DOI: 10.3390/environments5070079

Abstract

The peri-urban and urban forests in Greece occupy a total area of 105.353 ha. In these vulnerable ecosystems, fire constitutes a natural disaster presenting particular challenges and specific difficulties. These include the high number of visitors as well as forests characteristics - such as the presence of particularly flammable tree species and high accumulation of combustible biomass – that make the on-start of fires more likely. The main purpose of the current research is to identify the optimum combination of silvicultural treatments to efficiently reduce potential forest fire severity and to facilitate their successful suppression by firefighting crews. In order to simulate the basic fire environment of urban forests, two main experimental plots were established and several tree and topographical characteristics were measured. Additionally, the NEXUS wildfire system was used to simulate forest fire potential behavior before and after the adoption of the silvicultural treatments that altered critical characteristics of the forest fire environment. The results clearly show that specific silvicultural prescriptions altered the type of forest fire spreading potential, revealing the overall efficiency of preventing actions during forest management.

Subject Areas

urban forests; silvicultural treatments; NEXUS; simulation; fire

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