What are fuels?

Legion Lake Fire South Dakota
Legion Lake Fire in Custer State Park, South Dakota, December 13, 2019. Photo by Bill Gabbert.

Forest managers and wildland firefighters will often use the word “fuels.” What are fuels? It’s both the living and dead vegetation in a forest that can potentially burn in a wildfire. David Peterson, biologist for the U.S. Forest Service Pacific Northwest Research Station, explains in this 80-second video how reducing fuels helps to reduce the intensity of wildfires.