Socio-ecological characteristics of disturbance in Alaska

What we are doing

The objectives of this study are to: 

  • Assess whether past beetle outbreaks on the Kenai Peninsula in south-central Alaska alter the characteristics of wildfire in the region 
  • Quantify how property values in the wildland-urban interface vary with time since the occurrence of different wildfires and beetle outbreaks on the Kenai Peninsula
  • Complement our findings with past literature to project future scenarios of vegetation cover and succession trajectories due to the effects of beetles and wildfire in interior Alaska 

Alaska will likely experience radical social and ecological change over the next human generation as a result of natural disturbance and climate change. This study could provide critical information, building a foundation for future research regarding the effects of natural disturbance on the landscape and empowering local stakeholders to navigate resulting environmental transformations in positive ways.

Areas of expertise: 
Scenario planning