Rim BAER (nps) Media Release -- 9.14.2013
Incident: Rim Post-Fire BAER Burned Area Emergency Response
Rim BAER (NPS) Media Release 9.14.2013
The National Park Service (NPS) assembled a Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) team which is comprised of a forester botanist geologist hydrologist watershed modelers and an administrator to assess the post-fire effects of the Rim Fire on the infrastructure and resources of Yosemite National Park.
BAER (pronounced 'bear') teams are formed after major wildfires to assess the post-fire conditions and if necessary propose treatments to ameliorate threats to these resources. Wildfires are a natural part of the Sierra Nevada ecosystem but sometimes wildfires create conditions that threaten natural and cultural resources and infrastructure like roads and structures. These threats include flooding soil erosion threats to life and property habitat loss and other issues.
“Over 77 000 acres have burned within the Park making this is the largest wildfire in modern history to burn in Yosemite. For the most part the fire burned at a moderate to low intensity in a mosaic pattern and should prove to restore forest structure. Yosemite has some of the largest remaining tracts of old growth forests in California including giant sequoias we’re working hard to keep it that way”. Chris Holbeck NPS BAER Team Leader.
The BAER team uses a deliberative science based process to assess post fire effects. They use resource specialists to conduct the assessments satellite imagery to determine soil burn severity and computer models to calculate watershed response. The NPS and US Forest Service are working together as a unified team along with other agency and university partners. The BAER team expects to have field assessments completed early next week and a plan available shortly after.
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