Recent large wildfires in the area, including the La Mesa Fire (1977), the Dome Fire (1996), the Oso Fire (1998), the Cerro Grande Fire (2000), and the Las Conchas Fire (2011), demonstrate that forests on and surrounding Los Alamos National Laboratory are susceptible to destructive crown fires. The Los Alamos National Laboratory wildland fire management goals address these threats.
Emergency Operations maintains an annual and five-year wildland fire management plan that responds directly to requirements set forth in the Los Alamos National Security, LLC, Contract Appendix G and Department of Energy (DOE)/National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) policy regarding wildland fire management.
The program also meets requirements established by the National Fire Plan and fully integrated into Fire Management plans of adjoining Los Alamos National Laboratory management agencies.
Fire Mitigation Areas
The Laboratory has identified critical areas if a wildland fire escapes from or onto Los Alamos National Laboratory land.
Known as fuel treatment plots, these areas are under specific fuel prescriptions designed to return each area to pre 1900s fuel loading.
Once treated, the area will be assigned a retreatment cycle and will be incorporated into the Los Alamos National Laboratory Wildland fire maintenance program.