Oregon State University; Oregon State University - Cascades; OSU-Cascades; Science Pub; Wildland fire

The wildland urban interface is growing fast, but infrastructure is not designed to withstand our wildfires. Photo courtesy of Oregon Department of Transportation.

Oct 28, 2020

How communities in the western United States can adapt to wildfire hazards at a time when the climate is growing hotter and drier will be the topic of the Nov. 9 Oregon State University Science Pub.

The virtual event, a joint effort of Oregon State University in Corvallis and OSU-Cascades in Bend, will feature a talk by Erica Fischer, an assistant professor in the School of Civil and Construction Engineering in the OS College of Engineering.

In recent months, fires have devastated communities throughout the western United States. In her talk, “Fires in the West: How to Build Fire Adaptive Communities for the Future,” Fischer will discuss actions communities can take to mitigate wildfire hazards, particularly as the climate grows hotter and drier.

Research has shown the wildland urban interface is the fastest growing land use in the contiguous U.S. However, infrastructure such as power lines and water lines, is not designed to withstand wildfires in the wildland urban interface. Fischer studies fire in the wildland urban interface as a way to improve the resilience of infrastructure.

The Science Pub will run from 6 to 7:30 p.m. and can be viewed for free. The event will be broadcast on YouTube Live. Registration is required and can be completed at https://beav.es/oRJ.

Sponsors of the OSU Science Pub include the Office of Research, OSU-Cascades in Bend and the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry. Connect Central Oregon, a collaborative program with the OSU-Cascades Innovation Co-Lab, will produce the event with its student interns.

About OSU-Cascades: Oregon State University’s campus in Bend, Ore. features outstanding faculty in degree programs that reflect Central Oregon’s vibrant economy and abundant natural resources. Nearly 20 undergraduate majors, 35 minors and options, and three graduate programs include computer science, energy systems engineering, kinesiology, hospitality management, and tourism, recreation and adventure leadership. OSU-Cascades expanded to a four-year university in 2015; its new campus opened in 2016.