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ARS Home » Plains Area » Fort Collins, Colorado » Center for Agricultural Resources Research » Water Management and Systems Research » Research » Research Project #444333

Research Project: Using Landscape Features, Plot Measurements, and Remote Sensing Data to Improve Predictions of Fuels Treatment Longevity in the Colorado Front Range

Location: Water Management and Systems Research

Project Number: 3012-13660-010-025-I
Project Type: Interagency Reimbursable Agreement

Start Date: Sep 1, 2023
End Date: Sep 1, 2026

This project will use existing datasets curated by the Colorado Forest Restoration Institute at Colorado State University, combined with new field data to assess the longevity of fuels treatments at >300 plots across the Colorado Front Range.

We will use existing datasets of vegetation and fuels surveys completed one year prior to fuels treatments, plus identical vegetation and fuels data collected at 2, 5, and 10 years post treatment to assess how fuels have accumulated over time. We will use a combination of field data, satellite imagery, land cover data, drought indices and other climate data in Bayesian and machine learning models to predict fuels accumulation, and forecast additional accumulation rates into the future using simple climate change projections.