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New Tool Provides Wildfire Risk Data to US Homeowners in the Face of Climate Change | News

The aftermath of last week’s Coastal Fire in Laguna Niguel, California. Image Courtesy @royolone by Twitter.

Wildfires are becoming a growing threat to American homeowners with accelerating climate change, and now a new tool from the nonprofit First Street Foundation will allow them to access probabilistic data about the potential risk their property faces. could face over the next 30 years.

By incorporating open-source tax information, satellite imagery and advanced computer modeling, the Foundation was able to produce a fire factor metric and an interactive map that details both the intensity of future fires and their ability to sustain. move over different topographies. An individual structure’s score is therefore determined by its available defensible space, roof and construction type, and proximity to combustibles such as trees, shrubs, and wild grasses.

Related on Archinect: Scientists Use Deep Learning Data to Map Wildfire Damage to Structures

Currently, there are no publicly available fire hazard data similar to the flood damage assessments required by the federal flood insurance program that was first enacted in 1968. To fill this information gap instead of the catastrophic threats posed by climate change to regions of the country over the coming decades, the researchers were able to provide an important public resource that was hitherto unavailable, with the exception of an outdated system in California and a nascent effort still underway in Oregon.

Graphic courtesy of First Street Foundation

The report says a total of 80 million properties across the country are at risk from potential fires over the three-decade period. More than 10 million properties fall between the “Major” and “Extreme” categories, with significant increases predicted for states like New Jersey, Massachusetts, Florida, Louisiana and Arkansas. Only 49.4 million structures have been declared at ‘minor’ risk, meaning their burn probabilities will remain below 1% before 2052, although researchers have also warned of an ‘imminent disaster’ of properties entering in the most severe assessment levels as a result of human-induced ecological changes. .

Previously on Archinect: FireCity | FireLAnd: New Models of Resilience and Community with UCLA’s Hitoshi Abe and Jeffrey Inaba’s Research Studios

The popular classifieds website has already implemented the assessment tool in its services. First Street says it plans to roll out the tool to other online property entities by the end of the year, and that it will come with information for landlords on how best to protect their properties. properties from one of the myriad natural disasters that account for 71% of all home buying decisions, according to a recent survey by and HarrisX.

“Slightly more than one in two single-family homes across the country have at least some wildfire hazard,” a company product manager said. Axios the need to make this information available and easily accessible. “We think it’s important that every American has access to this type of information.”