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U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2006-3015

USGS Science Helps Build Safer Communities
Wildfire Hazards—A National Threat

Wildfires are a growing natural hazard in most regions of the United States, posing a threat to life and property, particularly where native ecosystems meet developed areas.

However, because fire is a natural (and often beneficial) process, fire suppression can lead to more severe fires due to the buildup of vegetation, which creates more fuel.

In addition, the secondary effects of wildfires, including erosion, landslides, introduction of invasive species, and changes in water quality, are often more disastrous than the fire itself.

 

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