|Title||A Soil Burn Severity Index for Understanding Soil-Fire Relations in Tropical Forests|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2008|
|Authors||Jain, TB, Gould, WA, Graham, RT, Pilliod, DS, Lentile, LB, González, G|
Methods for evaluating the impact of fires within tropical forests are needed as fires become more frequent and human populations and demands on forests increase. Short- and long-term fire effects on soils are determined by the prefire, fire, and postfire environments. We placed these components within a fire-disturbance continuum to guide our literature synthesis and develop an integrated soil burn severity index. The soil burn severity index provides a set of indicators that reflect the range of conditions present after a fire. The index consists of seven levels, an unburned level and six other levels that describe a range of postfire soil conditions. We view this index as a tool for understanding the effects of fires on the forest floor, with the realization that as new information is gained, the index may be modified as warranted.