About the NWCG Glossary of Wildland Fire

This glossary provides the wildland fire community a single source for wildland fire and incident management terminology commonly used by the NWCG and its subgroups.

One of the NWCG goals is to standardize terms and definitions within the NWCG community. To support this goal, NWCG is directing that all NWCG products that contain terms and definitions be based on this Glossary for the purpose of maintaining definition consistency and clarity among documents.

Please email any comments to the Data Standards and Terminology Subcommittee at BLM_FA_NWCG_Glossary@blm.gov.

Understanding the Glossary Process

Why Does NWCG Need to Develop Terminology?

The NWCG Glossary of Wildland Fire is developed and published to provide an accurate and consistent vocabulary that can be used by NWCG in its product development and also across agency wildland fire programs. The NWCG has directed that all committee and subgroup product glossaries be contained within the NWCG Glossary of Wildland Fire for the purpose of maintaining definition consistency and clarity among documents.

What is a Glossary Entry?

A glossary entry includes a term and one or more definitions for that term. Most terms only have one definition. However, in some cases a term may be used in differing contexts by various business areas so multiple definitions are warranted.

Consistent use of terminology promotes the efficient sharing of information, facilitates analysis of data from disparate sources, improves data integrity, and maximizes the use of shared resources.

NWCG Glossary Terms Must:

  • Be specific to wildland fire
  • Relate to NWCG committee work or publications
  • Not be defined in a common dictionary

Examples of Excluded Glossary Terms:

  • Organizations:  Agency and Bureau names which can be easily research on-line e.g. National Park Service, Georgia Department of Natural Resources, etc.
  • IT Applications:  Publications should address them generically (for example: Resource ordering system vs. ROSS.) An inventory of IT Investments is managed by the WFIT Program Management Office (https://sites.google.com/a/firenet.gov/www/).
  • NWCG Positions:  Information about approved NWCG positions is centralized under the NWCG website.

Term Development and Maintenance

A monthly update of the glossary allows committees and organizations responsible for products to incorporate changes on a continual basis. An NWCG committee or subgroup is assigned as the steward to develop or revise a glossary entry. These stewards are - or represent - the subject matter experts and can ensure accuracy of definitions and consistency across agencies. The following entities are involved in development and maintenance of NWCG glossary entries: requestor, Data Standards and Terminology Subcommittee (DSTS), stewards, reviewers, and the NWCG Web Manager. See the NWCG User Guide for Glossary of Wildland Fire, PMS 937, for more specific definitions for each entity involved and the steps in the maintenance of the NWCG Glossary.

Copyright and Trademark Information

This glossary is compiled and maintained under the stewardship of the NWCG Data Standards and Terminology Subcommittee (DSTS).  NWCG has approved this information for the guidance of its subgroups and member agencies and is not responsible for the interpretation or use of this information by anyone otherwise.

This NWCG information is in the public domain. Use of the information, including copying, is permitted. Use of NWCG information within another document is permitted using accurate and proper citation to avoid plagiarism.

The NWCG logo may not be used except on NWCG authorized information. "National Wildfire Coordinating Group", "NWCG", and the NWCG logo are trademarks of the National Wildfire Coordinating Group.

The use of trade, firm, or corporation names in this publication is for the information and convenience of the reader and does not constitute an endorsement by the National Wildfire Coordinating Group of any product or service to the exclusion of others that may be suitable.

Page Last Modified / Reviewed: 
2018-05-03