The latest edition of the ESRI Map Book, Volume 29, features the Wildland Fire Potential map, produced by RMRS Spatial Fire Analyst Greg Dillon with the Fire Modeling Institute at the Missoula Fire Sciences Lab. Each summer, the Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI), makers of ArcGIS software, hosts an international User Conference in San Diego, California, attracting thousands of attendees from around the world, and each year the Forest Service displays examples of geospatial analysis and cartography from around the agency as part of the conference’s map gallery. Greg’s poster on the Wildland Fire Potential map at the 2013 conference won an award and was included in this year’s Map Book.
This map is a raster geospatial product, that is, a pattern of closely spaced rows of dots that form an image, depicting relative wildfire hazard across the conterminous United States, based primarily on wildfire simulation modeling work done by Research Ecologist Karen Short and Research Forester Mark Finney at the Fire Lab. Ecologist Jim Menakis and Applied Fire Ecologist Frank Fay with WO Fire & Aviation Management also contributed to the Map. Since the Map’s release in February 2013, it has received broad attention from inside and outside the Forest Service. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Interior Secretary Sally Jewell used the Map in a presentation to President Obama and members of the Western Governors’ Association this past June to highlight strategic approaches to fuels management on federal lands.