LANDFIRE's (LF) Biophysical Settings (BPS) represents the vegetation that may have been dominant on the landscape prior to Euro-American settlement and is based on both the current biophysical environment and an approximation of the historical disturbance regime.
Map units are based on NatureServe's Ecological Systems classification and represent the natural plant communities that may have been present during the reference period. Each BPS map unit is matched with a model of vegetation succession, and both serve as key inputs to the LANDSUM landscape succession model. The actual time period for this data set is a composite of both the historical context provided by the fire regime and vegetation dynamics models and the more recent field and geospatial inputs used to create it.
LF's current BPS is unchanged from LF National's BPS except for updates made to water, barren, and snow classes (additions or removal), so that non-vegetated cover types within the BPS product matches LF existing vegetation and fuel products.
With the final release of LF Remap for CONUS in mid to late 2020, the LF Remap BPS product will include the following as attributes: Mean Fire Return Interval (MFRI), Percent of Low-severity Fire (PLS), Percent of Mixed-severity Fire (PMS), Percent of Replacement-severity Fire (PRS), and Fire Regime Groups (FRG), so that the linkage of these characteristics to BPS is maintained.
LF uses BPS to depict reference conditions of vegetation across landscapes.