Berkeley Forests operates five research forests throughout the state to develop and test appropriate management strategies for forested watersheds that will flourish under different climate change scenarios. Berkeley Forests is home to the oldest permanent forest plots (1915) and longest running forestry summer camp (1917) in the Western United States.
Given the importance of fire in many ecosystems, along with our dependence on and development into inherently fire-prone landscapes, we need to reach a sustainable coexistence with wildfire. Our goal is to develop and disseminate science-based solutions to wildfire-related challenges.
A 2018 paper published in BioScience, led by researchers at UC-Berkeley, predicted that the massive tree die-off over the last decade in the Sierra Nevada could serve as pockets of fuel for severe, unpredictable wildfires - warning readers that the dead tree material could fuel mass fires in the future. Dr. Brandon Collins, a co-author of the paper and Berkeley Forests Researcher, discusses the impacts of the widespread tree mortality on the still-burning Creek Fire.