Publication: A risk-averse solution for the prescribed burning problem
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Hazard reduction is a complex task involving important efforts to prevent and mitigate the consequences of disasters. Many countries around the world have experienced devastating wildfires in recent decades and risk reduction strategies are now more important than ever. Reducing contiguous areas of high fuel load through prescribed burning is a fuel management strategy for reducing wildfire hazard. Unfortunately, this has an impact on the habitat of fauna and thus constrains a prescribed burning schedule which is also subject to uncertainty. To address this problem a mathematical programming model is proposed for scheduling prescribed burns on treatment units on a landscape over a planning horizon. The model takes into account the uncertainty related to the conditions for performing the scheduled prescribed burns as well as several criteria related to the safety and quality of the habitat. This multiobjective stochastic problem is modelled from a riskaverse perspective whose aim is to minimize the worst achievement of the criteria on the different scenarios considered. This model is applied to a real case study in Andalusia (Spain) comparing the solutions achieved with the risk-neutral solution provided by the simple weighted aggregated average. The results obtained show that our proposed approach outperforms the risk-neutral solution in worst cases without a significant loss of quality in the global set of scenarios.
CRUE-CSIC (Acuerdos Transformativos 2022)