Researchers from 2 universities to study wildfires
Sunday, July 24, 2011
LEWISTON, Idaho (AP) -- Researchers at the University of Idaho and Washington State University plan to use a $1.2 million grant from NASA to study how extreme wildfires affect people and the environment.
Researchers at the two schools will examine how the fires change vegetation, water quality and wildlife habitat. They will also examine how communities respond to fires.
Researchers tell the Lewiston Tribune that a trend of large-scale fires in the western United States is likely to continue as the climate warms and people move into forested areas.
Alistair Smith of the University of Idaho says he wants to find out if the environmental and societal effects of fires match up.
He says it's possible it may take the environment decades to recover, while people look at an area as recovered much sooner.
Information from: Lewiston Tribune, http://www.lmtribune.com