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Todd Hawbaker

Research Ecologist

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Short Biography

Todd J. Hawbaker received his B.S. degree in animal ecology in 1998 from Iowa State University.  After receiving his B.S., he worked for a couple of years burning and restoring tallgrass prairie in southwestern Minnesota and then pursued graduate school.  He received his M.S. degree in forestry in 2003 and Ph.D. degree in forestry in 2009 from the University of Wisconsin.  He joined the U.S. Geological Survey as a research ecologist in 2008 and works at the Geosciences and Environmental Change Science Center in Denver, CO.  His current research with the U.S.G.S. combines remote sensing with statistical and process-based ecosystem simulation models to examine the impacts of ecosystem disturbances on carbon stocks and fluxes.

 

Current research projects:

National-scale wildfire and fire-management impacts on ecosystem carbon storage and greenhouse-gas emissions
U.S.G.S. is conducting a national-scale assessment of carbon storage and greenhouse gas fluxes as mandated by Section 712 of the Energy Independence Act of 2007, also known as LandCarbon. Todd’s participation in this effort is twofold. First, an assessment is being conducted to quantify the impacts of recent wildfires on greenhouse gas emissions. Second, a suite of data, tools, and models are being developed to estimate future potential wildfire activity, biomass consumption, and greenhouse gas emissions under a range of climate, land-use/land-cover change, and fire-management scenarios. More details about the LandCarbon project, including ecosystem disturbances, methodology can be found at http://www.usgs.gov/global_change/carbon/methodology.asp

Burned Area Essential Climate Variable
Collaborators: Susan Stitt and Carol Mladinich
The USGS is developing research-quality, applications-ready essential climate variables (ECVs) using historic, current, and future Landsat data that follow guidelines established through the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS). As a member of the team developing the burned area ECV, I focus on designing and implementing automated change detection algorithms to extract burned areas in both forest and non-forest ecosystems from Landsat imagery. More details about the ECV project can be found at http://remotesensing.usgs.gov/ecv/index.php

Impacts of mountain pine beetle on forest vegetation composition and carbon dynamics in the Southern Rocky Mountains
Collaborators: Megan Caldwell, Jenny Briggs, and Susan Stitt
In the Southern Rocky Mountains, an epidemic outbreak of mountain pine beetle (Dendroctonus ponderosae) has caused unprecedented levels of tree mortality. To better understand the long-term impacts of insect outbreaks on vegetation and biogeochemical cycling, we have collected forest vegetation data at 119 plots located in eastern Grand County, CO. With the field data, we are simulating future vegetation conditions, biomass, and carbon stocks under a range of scenarios using the Forest Vegetation Simulator model.

Forecasting fire risk in the wildland-urban interface
Collaborators: Steve Garman and Nashwa Bolling (University of Denver)
Development in the wildland-urban interface has dramatically increased in the western U.S. in recent decades.  From a wildfire perspective, this development has increased the number of people and homes at risk and has potentially exacerbated risk by increasing the frequency of human-caused wildfire ignitions Fire-related impacts are expected to increase substantially over time as development in the WUI continues and climate changes further increases the frequency and area affected by wildfires in the West. This study relates past patterns of housing growth, vegetation, and weather to fire occurrence patterns in a probabilistic framework. Then, those relationships are used to examine potential changes in wildfire risk under housing growth and climate-change scenarios



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Publications

Prestemon, J.P., T.J. Hawbaker, M. Bowden, J. Carpenter, M.T. Brooks, K.L. Abt, R. Sutphen, A. Kole Berriochoa, and S. Scranton. 2013. Wildfire ignitions: A brief review of the science and recommendations for empirical modeling. General Technical Report-SRS-171. Asheville, NC, U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service, Southern Research Station, 20 p. [Link]

Hawbaker, T.J., V.C. Radeloff, S.I. Stewart, R.B. Hammer, N.S. Keuler, and M.K. Clayton. 2013. Human and biophysical influences on fire occurrence in the United States. Ecological Applications. 23(3): 565-582. [Link]

Caldwell, M.E., T.J. Hawbaker, J.S. Briggs, P.W. Cigan, and S. Stitt. 2013. Simulated impacts of mountain pine beetle and wildfire disturbances on forest vegetation composition and carbon stocks in the Southern Rocky Mountains. Biogeosciences 10:8203-8222, doi:10.5194/bg-10-8203-2013 [Link]

Sohl, T.L., B.M. Sleeter, Z. Zhu, K.L. Sayler, S. Bennett, M. Bouchard, R. Reker, T. Hawbaker, A. Wein, S. Liu, R. Kanengieter, W. Acevedo. 2012. A land-use and land-cover modeling strategy to support a national assessment of carbon stocks and fluxes. Applied Geography 34: 111-124. [Link]

Bar Massada, A., T. J. Hawbaker, V. C. Radeloff, and S. I Stewart. 2012. Using MODIS Active Fire and National Lightning Detection Network data to identify spatiotemporal patterns of large lightning fires in the conterminous United States, 2000 – 2008. IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing. 99: 1-10. [Link]

Zhu, Z., B. Sleeter, G. Griffith, S. Stackpoole, T. Hawbaker, and B. Bergamaschi, 2012, Executive Summary of Z. Zhu and B. Reed, eds., Baseline and projected future carbon storage and greenhouse-gas fluxes in ecosystems of the Western United States: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1797. 192 p. (Also available at http://pubs.usgs/gov/pp/1797) [Link]

Zhu, Z., B. Sleeter, G. Griffith, S. Stackpoole, T. Hawbaker, and B. Bergamaschi, 2012, Introduction to Scope, Methodology, and Ecosystems of the Assessment, chapter 1. of Z. Zhu and B. Reed, eds., Baseline and projected future carbon storage and greenhouse-gas fluxes in ecosystems of the Western United States: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1797. 192 p. (Also available at http://pubs.usgs/gov/pp/1797) [Link]

Hawbaker, T., and Z. Zhu, 2012, Baseline wildland fires and emissions for the Western United States, chapter 3 of Z. Zhu and B. Reed, eds., Baseline and projected future carbon storage and greenhouse-gas fluxes in ecosystems of the Western United States: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1797. 192 p. (Also available at http://pubs.usgs.gov/pp/1797) [Link]

Liu, S., J. Liu, C. Young, J. Werner, Y. Wu, Z. Li, D. Dahal, J. Oeding, G. Schmidt, T. Sohl, T. Hawbaker, and B. Sleeter, 2012, Baseline Carbon Storage, Sequestration and Greenhouse Gas Fluxes of Terrestrial Ecosystems in the Western United States, chapter 5 of Z. Zhu and B. Reed, eds., Baseline and projected future carbon storage and greenhouse-gas fluxes in ecosystems of the Western United States: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1797. 192 p. (Also available at http://pubs.usgs/gov/pp/1797) [Link]

Wein, A., T. Hawbaker, R. Champion, J. Ratliff, B. Sleeter, and Z. Zhu, 2012, Climate projections used for the assessment of the Western United States, chapter 7 of Z. Zhu and B. Reed, eds., Baseline and projected future carbon storage and greenhouse-gas fluxes in ecosystems of the Western United States: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1797. 192 p. (Also available at http://pubs.usgs/gov/pp/1797) [Link]

Hawbaker, T., and Z. Zhu, 2012, Projected future wildland fires and emissions for the Western United States, chapter 8 of Z. Zhu and B. Reed, eds., Baseline and projected future carbon storage and greenhouse-gas fluxes in ecosystems of the Western United States: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1797. 192 p. (Also available at http://pubs.usgs/gov/pp/1797) [Link]

Liu, S., Y. Wu, C. Young, D. Dahal, J. Werner, J. Liu, Z. Li, Z. Tan, G. Schmidt, T. Sohl, T. Hawbaker, and B. Sleeter, 2012, Projected Future Carbon Storage and Greenhouse Gas Fluxes of Terrestrial Ecosystems in the Western United States, chapter 9 of Z. Zhu and B. Reed, eds., Baseline and projected future carbon storage and greenhouse-gas fluxes in ecosystems of the Western United States: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1797. 192 p. (Also available at http://pubs.usgs/gov/pp/1797) [Link]

Liu, S., Z. Zhu, T. Sohl, T. Hawbaker, B. Sleeter, S. Stackpoole, and R. Smith, 2012, Toward an Integrated Assessment: Further Analyses and Observations, chapter 12 of Z. Zhu and B. Reed, eds., Baseline and projected future carbon storage and greenhouse-gas fluxes in ecosystems of the Western United States: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1797. 192 p. (Also available at http://pubs.usgs/gov/pp/1797) [Link]

Zhu, Z. (ed), M. Bouchard, D. Butman, T. Hawbaker, Z. Li, J. Liu, S. Liu, C. McDonald, R. Reker, K. Sayler, B. Sleeter, T. Sohl, S. Stackpoole, A. Wein, and Z. Zhu. 2011. Baseline and Projected Future Carbon Storage and Greenhouse-Gas Fluxes in the Great Plains Region of the United States. U.S. Geological Survey Profession Paper 1787, 28p. [Link]

Lesak, A.A., V.C. Radeloff, T.J. Hawbaker, A.M. Pidgeon, T. Gobakken, and K. Contrucci. 2011. Modeling forest songbird species richness using LiDAR-derived forest structure. Remote Sensing of Environment, 115(11):2823-2835. [Link]

Gimmi, U., S.L. Schmidt, T.J. Hawbaker, C. Alcàntara, U. Gafvert, and V.C. Radeloff. 2011. Road development, building growth, and related fragmentation effects in and around U.S. National Park Service holdings: indicators for the effectiveness of protected areas. Journal of Environmental Management, 92:229-239. [Link]

Bar Massada, A., A.D. Syphard, V.C. Radeloff, T.J. Hawbaker, and S.I. Stewart. 2011. Effects of ignition location models on the burn patterns of simulated wildfires. Environmental Modeling and Software, 26:583-592. [Link]

Zhu, Z., ed., B. Bergamaschi, R. Bernknopf, D. Clow, D. Dye, S. Faulkner, W. Forney, R. Gleason, T. Hawbaker, J. Liu, S. Liu, S. Prisley, B. Reed, M. Reeves, M. Rollins, B. Sleeter, T. Sohl, S. Stackpoole, S. Stehman, R. Striegl, A. Wein, and Z. Zhu. 2010, Public review draft; A method for assessing carbon stocks, carbon sequestration, and greenhouse-gas fluxes in ecosystems of the United States under present conditions and future scenarios: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2010–1144, 195 p. [Link]

Radeloff, V.C., S.I. Stewart, T.J. Hawbaker, U. Gimmi, A. Pidgeon, C. Flather, R.B. Hammer, and D. Helmers. 2010. Housing growth in and near United States’ protected areas limits their conservation value. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 259:410-417. [Link]

Hawbaker, T.J., T. Gobakken, A. Lesak, E. Trømborg, K. Contrucci, and V.C. Radeloff. 2010. LIDAR-based forest inventory of uneven-aged mixed hardwood forests. Forest Science, 56:313-326. [Link]

Freitas, S.R., T.J. Hawbaker, and J.P. Metzger, 2010. Effects of roads, topography, and land use on forest cover dynamics in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest. Forest Ecology and Management, 259:410-417. [Link]

Stewart, S.I., B. Wilmer, R.B. Hammer, G.H. Aplet, T.J. Hawbaker, C. Miller, and V.C. Radeloff. 2009. Wildland-Urban Interface maps vary with purpose and context. Journal of Forestry 107:78-83. [Link]

Syphard, A.D., V.C. Radeloff, T.J. Hawbaker, S.I. Stewart. 2009. Conservation threats due to human-caused increases in fire frequency in Mediterranean-climate ecosystems. Conservation Biology 23:758-769. [Link]

Hammer, R.B., V.C. Radeloff, S.I. Stewart, and T.J. Hawbaker. 2009. Housing growth, forests, and public lands in northern Wisconsin from 1940 to 2000. Journal of Environmental Management 90:2690-2698 [Link]

Rogers, D.A., T.P. Rooney, T.J. Hawbaker, V.C. Radeloff, D.M. Waller. 2009. Paying the extinction debt and the weakening of the biotic-environmental relationship in southern Wisconsin forests. Conservation Biology 22:1497-1506. [Link]

Bar Massada, A., V.C. Radeloff, S.I. Stewart, and T.J. Hawbaker. 2009. Wildfire risk in the wildland-urban interface: a simulation study in northwestern Wisconsin. Forest Ecology and Management, 258:1990-1999. [Link]

Hawbaker, T.J., N. Keuler, A. Lesak, T. Gobakken, K. Contrucci, and V.C. Radeloff. 2009. Improved estimates of forest vegetation structure and biomass with a LiDAR-optimized sampling design. Journal of Geophysical Research, 114. [Link]

Syphard, A.D., V.C. Radeloff, N.S. Keuler, R.S. Taylor, T.J. Hawbaker, S.I. Stewart, and M.K. Clayton. 2008. Predicting spatial patterns of fire in a southern California landscape. International Journal of Wildland Fire 17: 602-613. [Link]

Hawbaker, T.J., V.C. Radeloff, A.D. Syphard, Z. Zhu, and S.I. Stewart. 2008. Detection rates of the MODIS active fire product. Remote Sensing of Environment 112:2656-2664. [Link]

Syphard, A.D., V.C. Radeloff, J.E. Keeley, T.J. Hawbaker, M.K. Clayton, S.I. Stewart, and R. B. Hammer. 2007. Human influence on California fire regimes. Ecological Applications 17:1388-1402. [Link]

Gonzalez-Abraham, C.E., V.C. Radeloff, R.B. Hammer, T.J. Hawbaker, S.I. Stewart, and M.K. Clayton. 2007. Effects of building density, landownership, and land cover on landscape fragmentation in northern Wisconsin, USA. Landscape Ecology 22:217-230. [Link]

Stewart, S.I., V.C. Radeloff, R.B. Hammer, and T.J. Hawbaker. 2007. Defining the Wildland Urban Interface. Journal of Forestry 105:201-207. [Link]

Pidgeon, A.M., V.C. Radeloff, C.H. Flather, M.K. Clayton, C.A. Lepczyk, T.J. Hawbaker, and R.B. Hammer. 2007. The effects of housing density and landscape patterns on bird species richness across the United States. Ecological Applications 17:1989-2010. [Link]

Gonzalez-Abraham, C.E., V.C. Radeloff, R.B. Hammer, T.J. Hawbaker, S.I. Stewart, and M.K. Clayton. 2007. Building density and landscape pattern from 1938 to 1998 in northern Wisconsin, USA. Ecological Applications 17:2911-2023. [Link]

Hawbaker, T.J., V.C. Radeloff, C.E. Gonzalez-Abraham, R.B. Hammer, and M.K. Clayton. 2006. Changes in the road network, relationships with housing development, and the effects on landscape pattern in northern Wisconsin: 1937 to 1999. Ecological Applications 16: 1222-1237 [Link]

St-Louis, V., A.M. Pidgeon, V.C. Radeloff, T.J. Hawbaker, M.K. Clayton. 2006. High-resolution image textures as predictors of bird species richness. Remote Sensing of Environment 105:299-312. [Link]

Hawbaker, T.J., V.C. Radeloff, R.B. Hammer, and M.K. Clayton. 2005. Road density and landscape pattern in relation to housing density, land ownership, land cover, and soils. Landscape Ecology 20:609-625. [Link]

Hawbaker, T.J. and V.C. Radeloff. 2004. Road and landscape pattern in northern Wisconsin based on a comparison of four road data sources. Conservation Biology 18:1233-1244. [Link]






                           

My Science Topics


Science Topic
Subtopic
Environmental Issuesland use change
Environmental Issuesland use
Environmental Issueshuman impacts
Ecology and Environmentecological processes
Ecology and Environmentecosystem functions
Ecology and Environmentecosystems
Ecology and Environmenthabitat alteration
Geographic Analysis and Mappinggeospatial analysis
Geographic Analysis and Mappingremote sensing
Geographic Analysis and Mappingspatial analysis
Natural Hazardsfire control
Natural Hazardsfires
Techniques and Methodscomputational methods
Techniques and Methodsfield methods
Techniques and Methodsgeographic information systems (GIS)
Techniques and Methodsimage analysis
Techniques and Methodsmathematical modeling
Techniques and Methodsmathematical simulation
Techniques and Methodsremote sensing
Techniques and Methodsrisk assessment
Techniques and Methodsstatistical analysis



My USGS Science Strategy Areas

Understanding Ecosystems & Predicting Ecosystems Change

Climate Variability & Change

A National Hazard, Risk, and Resilience Assessment Program

Changes in vegetation composition and carbon stocks following pine beetle and wildfire disturbances

Image of Current Focus for Changes in vegetation composition and carbon stocks following pine beetle and wildfire disturbances

In the Southern Rocky Mountains, an epidemic outbreak of mountain pine beetle has caused unprecedented levels of tree mortality. To better understand the long-term impacts of insect outbreaks on vegetation and biogeochemical cycling, we have collected forest vegetation data at 119 plots located in eastern Grand County, CO. With the field data, we are simulating future vegetation conditions, biomass, and carbon stocks under a range of scenarios using the Forest Vegetation Simulator model. Airborne LiDAR data were also collected over our study area during the summer of 2010. We are analyzing those data to quantify forest vegetation structure (e.g. biomass) and provide the necessary data to simulate vegetation change and biogeochemical cycling over the entire study area. Collaborators: Megan Caldwell, Jenny Briggs, and Susan Stitt (USGS RMGSC)



Contact Information

Todd Hawbaker
West 6th Ave. & Kipling St., DFC Bldg. 25
Lakewood, CO 80225-0046
tjhawbaker@usgs.gov
303-236-1371
303-236-5349 - Fax
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