Fire and environment: Ineris contributes to an international research roadmap

Ineris has taken part in an international study initiated by the U.S. National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) on the impact fires have on the environment. This study, which has just been published, provides a state-of-the-art report on this as yet little documented scientific subject, accompanied by a roadmap identifying the priority areas for knowledge advancement.

The NFPA-funded study is an expansion of the international scientific community’s reflections on the need for more work on the impact fires haves on the surrounding environment. The IAFSS, the International Association for Fire Safety Science, recently noted that the “environmental emergency” situation in today's society (dwindling resources, climate change, etc.) raises the question of the scale of the ecological consequences of fires. It appears necessary to gain a better understanding of the effects fires have on the surrounding environment and to estimate their costs, compared to other types of risks, in order to inform public policy priorities when it comes to safety issues. In France, the importance of this issue was demonstrated by the recent fires at Notre-Dame in Paris and at the Lubrizol site in Rouen, where Ineris was called upon to provide a great deal of expertise.
Initiated in 2019, the study is the result of a partnership between Lund University in Sweden, Ineris’ fire safety teams and the U.S. consulting firm Meacham Associates. The work relates to fires in urban areas (i.e. not wildfires or forest fires), particularly focusing on the economic assessment of their consequences. By analysing the scientific literature and the case studies available, the partners have drawn up a state-of-the-knowledge report on the impact fires have on buildings, which has led to the identification of what exactly research work should focus on.