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Deschutes Basin Wildfire Risk Assessments and Community Wildfire Protection Plans

Wildfire risk assessments and protection plans & Community Wildfire protection plans

In 2005, the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) completed its initial statewide Communities at Risk Assessment and list, which assigns each Oregon community a low, moderate, or high risk rating. The assessment also defines the following:

  • Risk: The likelihood of a wildfire occurring. Based on federal and state data for historic wildfire occurrence
  • Hazard: Resistance to control once a wildfire starts. Based on weather, topography and fuel that adversely affects suppression efforts
  • Protection Capability: Adequacy of wildfire protection capabilities, including capacity and resources to undertake fire prevention measures
  • Value: Human and economic values associated with communities or landscapes. A combination of human life values (50%), municipal watersheds (30%), and commercial forest values (20%)
  • Overall: A composite rating incorporating all of the factors listed above

These wildfire risk ratings will help set large-scale fuel reduction priorities across watersheds and multi-county coordination areas.

Community Wildfire Protection Plans

The counties in the Deschutes Basin have also completed Community Wildfire Protection Plans (CWPPs) that: define community boundaries and wildland-urban interface areas, describe local wildfire hazards and values at risk, and explain how the community will reduce risk and respond in the event of a wildfire. These plans can be accessed through the Oregon Department of Forestry website.

Authored by Maria Wright and Amy Waltz, Institute for Natural Resources, and Caitlin Bell, Oregon Explorer