Burn Permit Tracking System GIS Web Tools Give Complete Picture


Georgia Forestry Commission’s Burn Permit Tracking System provides real-time information to landowners for permit issuance and reduces wildfire risks during prescribed burns. Georgia’s initiative to increase prescribed fire and associated benefits has led Esri to develop the special supported tool. 

“Controlled fires benefit the forest,” explains Alan Dozier, Georgia Forestry Commission’s chief of forest protection. “The Esri web solution manages digitized burn permit data, provides real-time maps of permitted burning, and helps us perform spatial analysis. This is necessary for effective smoke and fire management planning.”


The Burn Permit Tracking System is a new way of tracking fires. The innovative system helps rangers promote the ecological benefits of prescribed fire and make more informed decisions. It expedites the permit request process by enabling 24-hour availability and provides easy access to data and reports through Internetconnected devices including smartphones.

Georgia Forestry Commission has used Esri technology for many years as a tool for forest management and to fight forest fires. The development of the Burn Permit Tracking System will greatly expand the commission’s use of geographic information systems (GIS). This GIS tool is the first of its kind. It shows the
commission’s current fire activity and tracks locations and the amount of acres burned from year to year. The Burn Permit Tracking System’s GIS web tools allow users to easily add the location of wildfire events and manage the deployment of staff and fire suppression resources for forest fire management. 

“Georgia Forestry Commission’s Burn Permit Tracking System demonstrates how web mapping is being used to significantly improve the delivery of services to landowners while making the process easier to ensure environmental compliance,” notes Peter Eredics, Esri’s forest industry manager. “This system will also improve response time during wildfire events, which will result in fewer losses and safer working conditions for field crews.” 

The tracking system is built on Esri’s ArcGIS Server architecture using ArcGIS API for Flex ArcGIS Server accepts data from multiple sources and spatially locates the permits in real time. It shows the user information about the location such as weather, wind, and humidity. Rangers can make intelligent decisions about permit issuance based on the most current data. Forestry workers can use the Burn Permit Tracking System to generate summaries of permitted fire activity, compare permit parameters, and see relationships of
permit requests and air quality needed for complying with state environmental mandates.

See the Esri-powered Burn Permit Tracking System on the Georgia Forestry Commission website at http://gfcgis.gfc.state.ga.us/permitentry/.

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