Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences at the University of Colorado Boulder

Philip Higuera

Fire science has made significant strides in recent decades in understanding the biophysical causes and impacts of shifting fire regimes nationally and globally. Nonetheless, significant work is needed to integrate our understanding among ecological, physical, and human aspects of fire activity and fire effects, and to do so within geographic domains relevant to managers, policy makers, and citizens. Phil Higuera will work with Jennifer Balch and colleagues to undertake targeted analyses quantifying recent trends in the drivers and impacts of wildfires across the U.S. Rocky Mountains. The research is motivated by one overarching question: what is the relative influence of climate, vegetation, and varying human activity on recent trends in wildfires and human impacts? The work builds on previous research Balch, Higuera, and colleagues, but will focus on the central and northern Rocky Mountains, within geographic units relevant to land managers, planners, and communities.