Burntfields®: a wildfire risk management solution

Learn how GHD can help organizations and communities build resilience in the face of wildfire
Tatra mountains
Wildfires have accounted for USD 68.4 billion in damages across the US in the last 5 years, according to the NCEI. The surge in wildfire frequency, a notable consequence of climate change, wreaks havoc globally. That is why at GHD we established the Burntfields® suite of services to help with this newly recognized land designation, characterized as wildland urban interface (WUI) lands that, if damaged by fire, could have long-term impact to environmental, social, and economic sustainability.
Learn how GHD can help organizations and communities build resilience in the face of wildfire

Wildland urban interface risk factors

In a connected world, everyone is at risk of the increasing dangers of wildfires and their link to climate change. The elements that worsen wildfire vulnerability in wildland urban interface (WUI) areas include:

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 1. WUI growth - increased human footprint, such as number of homes, businesses, schools, and infrastructure located in the space between urban areas and surrounding wildlands.

2. Hazardous climate conditions - longer periods of drought, and extreme weather events produce more lightning strikes that start fires, and stronger winds which help fires spread more quickly.

3. Growing fuel conditions - Increased drought conditions felt in many parts of the world create drier environments where trees and vegetation burn more easily. Property development in the WUI also interrupts the natural process of fire clearing out undergrowth. These conditions produce plenty of fuel for large fires.

Burntfields® consulting services

Burntfields® is a complete wildfire risk management solution. Using a combination of technical expertise in wildfire risk management and planning, with technological and digital tools, we present our clients with a unique market offering including service capabilities across all FEMA emergency management phases, from prevention to recovery. GHD offers the following services as part of the Burntfields® wildfire risk management solution. We welcome you to contact us to determine the services that may be most appropriate for you.

GHD wildfire risk management integrated approach infographic
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Prevention and mitigation

We provide comprehensive prevention measures, from road design to forest management:

  • Primary and secondary road improvements
  • Defensible space enforcement
  • Forest/vegetation management
  • Alternative technology applications
  • Waste handling and education
  • Slope stabilization
  • Alternative access roads
  • Wildfire and life safety design, engineering and education
  • Computer-aided design services
  • Detecting data errors via secure cloud based data systems
  • Managing systems operations
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We provide research-based precautionary measures and actions to avoid and mitigate potential wildfires:

  • Hazard mitigation plan development/review
  • Quality engineering evaluation services
  • Community hazard awareness and response training
  • Structural/infrastructural assessments
  • Land use policy considerations
  • Data management and analysis
  • Data mining trends (traffic fluctuations, community movements, etc)
  • Online wildfire conditions tracking and spread modeling program
  • Evacuation plans and scenario modeling software application
  • Loss prevention assessments
  • Smoke and population egress modeling using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) software application
  • Fire protection systems (Water-based: sprinkler system corrosion Investigations/reports)
  • Special Hazards: dry/wet chemical, carbon dioxide, clean agents, explosion controls/venting, fire alarm and detection
  • Community alert systems
GHD first emergency response team


We provide hazard mitigation and immediate assistance in an emergency:

  • Air/water/traffic monitoring
  • Hazardous materials management
  • Community outreach
  • Control center support
  • Crisis communication services during and post events
  • In North America, the service offering is supplemented by a 24/7 manned access hotline as part of GHD FIRST (Fast Incident Response Services Team)
  • Emergency response services:
    • emergency environmental testing and inspection services
    • emergency engineering services for assets and infrastructure
    • emergency construction drafting
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We offer the following services that lead to quick resumption of key operations and environmental restoration:

  • Environmental assessments (ecological, human health, watershed, soil, groundwater, etc)
  • Consulting services for habitat restoration design and wetland preservation
  • Habitat restoration
  • Damage estimates
  • Waste management (transportation, storage and destruction)
  • Engineering and construction
  • Decommissioning and demolition
  • Contamination assessment and remediation
  • Health risk assessment consulting
  • Business advocacy services: promoting the interest of small business owners by providing public advocacy
  • Construction drafting
  • Managing, monitoring and evaluating data in the field of construction, remediation, restoration and waste management utilizing secure cloud based data systems

We developed a means to assess the specific risk of a community to wildfire threats, given the physical and environmental factors present and the capacity of the community to evacuate.”

From WUI national guidance support
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Together we can build wildfire-resilient communities

Do you have a wildfire risk-management related challenge that we can solve with our Burntfields® suite of services? From wildfire prevention to environmental remediation, we can help you no matter the complexity.

Our changemakers

Other related services

Across all our areas of expertise our team, alongside our large and small business partners, is here to provide the support you need, every step of the way. Together, we can create wildfire-ready communities, businesses, and environments. 

We provide full access to:

  • 11,000 professional staff
  • Over 160 global offices
  • Unparalleled experience in every area of wildfire risk management
  • An integral, collaborative approach which allows our clients to get the necessary solutions tailored to their needs, no matter the complexity or the challenge

These are some of the services that are at your disposal when you work with us:

- Asset management
- Risk management
- ESG and strategic sustainability
- Movement strategies
- Land development and urban planning
- Mechanical, electrical, fire and life safety
- Engagement, communication and communities
- Transportation planning and traffic engineering
Energy and resources
- Emergency response and disaster management
- Spatial sciences
- Stakeholder engagement and social sustainability
- Air and noise consultants: Compliance, design and modelling 
- Demolition and decommissioning management
- Hydrology and water management 
- Environmental and natural resource consultants
- Waste management consultants
- Contamination assessment and remediation

- GHD Navigator®  EHS&S platform (Environmental, Health, Safety and Sustainability)
- Advanced analytics and artificial intelligence
- Location intelligence
- Drones and geomatics
- Connected infrastructure and smart places
- Digital twin