n. A linear path in which surface fuel and canopy fuel has been reduced.


  • Discussion


A fuelbreak is a linear landscape feature of variable width within which the fuel profile has been altered.  Fuel is present in a fuelbreak but is reduced relative to areas outside the fuelbreak.  Fuelbreaks vary in width from 100 ft to 1200 ft. In shrublands, a fuelbreak may appear as a grassy strip through the shrubfield where shrub cover has been replaced by grasses.  In forests, fuelbreaks have lower surface fuel loads, higher canopy base height, and often reduced canopy bulk density than the adjacent forest. See Agee and others (2000), Green (1977), and Schimke and Green (1970) for more information.


  • See Also

  • References

    • Agee, J.K.; Bahro, B; Finney, M.A.; Omi, P.N.; Sapsis, D.B.; Skinner, C.N.; van Wagtendonk, J.W.; Weatherspoon, C.P. 2000. The use of shaded fuelbreaks in landscape fire management.  Forest Ecology and Management. 127: 55-66.

    • Green, L.R. 1977.  Fuelbreaks and other fuel modification for wildland fire control.  U.S. Department of Agriculture Handbook. 499 p.

    • Schimke, H.; Green, L. 1970.  Prescribed fire for maintaining fuel-breaks in the Sierra Nevada.  Berkeley, CA: USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Forest and Range Experiment Station.


  • Notes

    • Author 

      James Agee, Professor of Forest Ecology

      University of Washington