Wildland fire use [Fire use]
n. The application of the appropriate management response to naturally ignited wildland fires to accomplish specific resource management objectives (NFAEB 2005).
The specific language in recent federal fire policy documents regarding the use of fire is confusing and imprecise. Federal wildland fire policy recognizes two types of wildland fire that can be used to accomplish specific resource management objectives under a concept called “use of wildland fire”. A manager-ignited use of wildland fire is called a prescribed fire . A naturally ignited use of wildland fire is called, according to federal fire policy, simply wildland fire use. This is confusing because prescribed fire is not wildland fire use, but it is a use of wildland fire. Under previous fire policy, a naturally ignited fire managed for resource objectives was termed a prescribed natural fire (PNF).
Because wildland fire use is really a concept rather than a type of fire, fire managers have struggled with what to call a lightning-ignited fire being managed for resource objectives. Managers have used the terms “fire-use fire” and “wildland-fire-used-for-resource-benefit” in reference to fires formerly called PNFs. The shorthand term “fire use” is often used synonymously with wildland fire use. The term fire use is ambiguous because it could be used to mean either “use of wildland fire” (both natural and management ignitions) or wildland fire use (only natural ignitions).
Only specific areas designated in approved fire management plans are eligible for wildland fire use.