Post-fire Inventory And Reporting: A Crucial Step In Home Insurance Claims

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Post-fire Inventory And Reporting: A Crucial Step In Home Insurance Claims

Post-fire Inventory And Reporting: A Crucial Step In Home Insurance Claims

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By Enrico Marcolin Enrico Marcolin Scilit Google Scholar 1 , Raffaella Marzano Raffaella Marzano Scilit Google Scholar 2 , Alessandro Vitali Alessandro Vitali Scilit Google Scholar 3 , Matteo Garbarino Matteo Garbarino Scilit Preprints and Emanuel Google Lingua Emanuele Lingua Scilit Google Scholar 1, *

Received: 6 October 2019 / Revised: 5 November 2019 / Accepted: 9 November 2019 / Published: 13 November 2019

Food Webs For Three Burn Severities After Wildfire In The Eldorado National Forest, California

(This article is a Special Issue of Reforestation: New Issues and Findings in Reforestation Innovation)

Wildfires that occupy a high intensity area can profoundly affect the ecosystem of the forest whose composition includes plant species that do not have fire-related characteristics and specific conditions. Land managers and policy makers need to recognize the importance of properly managing these ecosystems, adopting post-disturbance interventions designed to achieve management goals, and restoring necessary ecosystem services. Recent studies have often found that post-fire salvage logging negatively affects the regenerative capacity of the environment, thereby altering successional pathways due to detrimental interactions with previous disturbances. In this study, we compared the results of salvage logging and other post-disturbance interventions (adopting different deadwood management techniques) to assess their impact on microclimate conditions, which may affect tree establishment and survival. After a large and severe wildfire in the Western Alps that affected the standing behavior (100% tree death), a mountain forest dominated by Pinus sylvestris L., a post-fire intervention was adopted (SL-Salvage Logging, logging). of all entanglements; CR-Cut and Loose, to cut the snags and release all the dead wood on the ground; NI-No Intervention, all loops left standing). The differences between interventions related to microclimatic conditions (albedo, twilight, solar radiation, soil moisture, soil temperature) were analyzed at different spatial scales (area, microsite). Management interventions have influenced the availability and density of safe rehabilitation sites. Clearing of salvage trees contributed to the post-fire microsite’s poor condition by increasing soil temperature and reducing soil moisture. The presence of deadwood, instead, contributes to the development of microclimatic conditions for plants. The CR intervention had higher soil moisture and lower soil temperature, which may be critical for seedling survival in the early post-fire years. Because of its negative impact on microclimatic conditions affecting the availability of preferred microsites for reforestation, salvage logging should not be considered the only intervention to be used in post-fire areas. If there are no threats or risks that require specific management measures (e.g., public safety, physical hazards of the areas), in the investigated ecosystems, there is no intervention, leaving all the wood in the area, which can lead to better microclimatic conditions for the establishment of seedlings. A preferred strategy to speed up natural processes and increase safe areas for regeneration would be to cut dead trees while leaving the dead wood (at least partially) on the ground.

After a very large disturbance, the recovery of the forest can be prevented by the severe microclimatic conditions that arise from the event [1]. If there are no specific plant characteristics related to the occurrence of disturbances and after wildfires that change the landscape, conditions may worsen, greatly reducing the establishment and survival of tree regeneration. In these cases, if disturbances are followed by management practices that affect the abundance, quality, and spatial pattern of biological heritage, forest regeneration processes may be affected and altered in terms of both time and density of seedlings.

Post-fire Inventory And Reporting: A Crucial Step In Home Insurance Claims

Post-fire management practices vary from passive management, allowing natural recovery to take place, to implementing different levels of intervention. Rescue logging is the most widespread intervention [2]. Its effects on the forest ecosystem have been investigated by several studies in the last few decades [3, 4, 5, 6] by looking at the different effects on the living parts of the forest environment, such as bird communities [7], the association of arthropods [8], mammals [9], bryophytes [10], and tree species [4]. In addition, salvage logging has been found to alter the environment, causing erosion and runoff [11], and promoting ice movement [12]. As emphasized recently [13], interactions are expected between environmental disturbances and subsequent logging, with consequences that may be difficult to foresee. Cutting down and removing affected trees, dead and damaged, can create another disturbance, having unwanted effects on certain ecosystem processes [6].

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The establishment of effective seedlings is based on microclimatic requirements that are often more restrictive than those required for the survival of adult plants [14]. During ontogenetic stages, trees develop structures that allow limiting factors to be overcome (that is, a deep or large root system that can reach water deep in the soil).

Soil temperature and moisture conditions, which deeply influence the growth and survival of seedlings, can be greatly affected by the management practices adopted after a severe wildfire [15, 16, 17]. Therefore, the regeneration of the stand may be affected due to the resulting changes in irradiance and albedo in the soil surface, reduction of soil deposition, or changes in physical properties.

Deadwood can play an important role in determining regeneration patterns. Its presence may increase the availability of suitable habitats for seedlings and survival, acting as a shelter or protection against many limiting factors. This may be especially important immediately after a fire-changing stand, when there are no other support mechanisms provided by neighboring mature plants or shrubs [4]. Especially when lying on the ground, deadwood elements can affect the transfer of heat to the surface of the soil, affecting daily and seasonal soil temperatures, as well as moisture patterns.

The role of biological heritage (sensu [18]) has been widely recognized by forest ecologists and scientists. However, after major disruptions in the forestry sector, the current management strategy, still tends to salvage the economic value of timber by removing dead or affected trees, usually at the request of the community [5]. There are few studies focused on this topic in the Alps, especially in areas with wind, or insect outbreaks [19, 20]. Regarding fire management after these ecosystems, only a few studies have compared salvage logging with other post-disruption silvicultural interventions [4, 21]. Their results showed that salvage logging slowed the growth of committed species, leading to a decline in biodiversity (both species richness and structure). These patterns were linked to the lack of spatial resolution provided by deadwood, but no direct evidence was presented.

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In this study, we wanted to test if different post-fire management interventions changed the microsite in temperature and water availability levels, with our main hypothesis that salvage logging creates difficult conditions, especially on slopes that are more exposed to the sun (facing south). .

The study area of ​​Bourra (45°46′21′′ N, 7°29′55′′ E) is located in the Aosta Valley (NW Italy), within the municipality of Verrayes. This area, filled with almost virgin forest of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.), was severely affected by a stand fire in March 2005. The wildfire, one of the largest and worst in the region, burned 257 hectares of it. about 160 hectares had a change in behavior (100% mortality). The elevation is between 1650 and 1800 m a.s.l., and the south-facing slope has an average inclination of 25°. The bedrock is ophiolite and schist, and the soil is entisols (Soil Taxonomy USDA). The average annual temperature is 5.6 °C and the average annual rainfall is about 750 mm (less than 250 mm from June to August), with the driest month being February (station the climate of Nus-Saint Barthélemy, 1650 m a.s.l., 1931–2012 period), which corresponds to the peak of the fire season. On average, there are less than 100 days of rain per year, rarely in February, and frequent water shortages in summer. Snowfall is usually distributed in November-December and -March-April, reaching an average annual value of 150 cm, and rapid melting due to its southern aspect.The vegetation consists of dense forest equal to P. sylvestris with sporadic Larix decidua Miller, Picea abies L. Karst, Quercus pubescens Will., Populus tremula L. and Betula pendula Roth. The stand was the result of a second succession from 60-80 years ago on abandoned pastures.

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