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The FireCost software was developed to enable the estimation of the economic impact of forest fires, and for the comparison of the efficiency of alternative fire management scenarios.

Three different models were developed for the assessment of economic impacts of forest fires. The three models differ in complexity, data needs, and precision of damage assessment estimations.

  1. The quick assessment model is the simplest, and its aim is to provide a first estimate of the possible range of economic damages caused by a forest fire. The lower bound of the provided damage estimate is based on forest replacement costs and the upper range on people's willingness to pay to protect an additional hectare of a forest.
  2. The intermediate model for forest fire damage assessment provides estimates based on established lists of values for a number of forest goods and services, and fire suppression costs. The goods and services included are timber, non-wood forest products, recreation and carbon sequestration.
  3. The detailed assessment model is more precise and flexible than the previous models, so it can be better adjusted to the case specific situation. For example, the user can select all the important types of damage caused by the forest fire. On the other hand, it requires more input data that has to be provided by the user. Nevertheless, the model also provides a number of predefined price lists for different forest goods and services.

The model for the evaluation of economic efficiency of fire management measures is a tool to compare two or more fire management alternatives. The model can be used for prediction (ex ante) To specify a management alternative the user has to specify which fire management measures are performed (prevention, fire suppression and restoration), when and in what extent, and what would be the potential damages if a fire would occur. The model is based on the Cost-Benefit Analysis and it provides the net present value of a certain management alternative.

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FireCost manual