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Sample records for mapping wildfire burned

  1. Mapping wildfire burn severity in the Arctic Tundra from downsampled MODIS data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kolden, Crystal A.; Rogan, John

    2013-01-01

    Wildfires are historically infrequent in the arctic tundra, but are projected to increase with climate warming. Fire effects on tundra ecosystems are poorly understood and difficult to quantify in a remote region where a short growing season severely limits ground data collection. Remote sensing has been widely utilized to characterize wildfire regimes, but primarily from the Landsat sensor, which has limited data acquisition in the Arctic. Here, coarse-resolution remotely sensed data are assessed as a means to quantify wildfire burn severity of the 2007 Anaktuvuk River Fire in Alaska, the largest tundra wildfire ever recorded on Alaska's North Slope. Data from Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) and downsampled Moderate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) were processed to spectral indices and correlated to observed metrics of surface, subsurface, and comprehensive burn severity. Spectral indices were strongly correlated to surface severity (maximum R2 = 0.88) and slightly less strongly correlated to substrate severity. Downsampled MODIS data showed a decrease in severity one year post-fire, corroborating rapid vegetation regeneration observed on the burned site. These results indicate that widely-used spectral indices and downsampled coarse-resolution data provide a reasonable supplement to often-limited ground data collection for analysis and long-term monitoring of wildfire effects in arctic ecosystems.

  2. Using NASA EOS to Assess Burn Severity and Perform Fire Risk Mapping of the 2011 North Carolina Wildfire Season

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gleason, J. L.; Ehlen, A.

    2012-12-01

    Since the beginning of 2011 North Carolina has experienced dry conditions and high winds, which has increased the fuel load on the ground. This extreme weather led to several periods of severe wildfires which burned nearly 100,000 acres, caused significant damage to the Coastal Plains region's ecosystem, and greatly affected the livelihoods of many North Carolinians. Utilizing NASA's Earth Observing Systems (EOS), burn severity, real-time drought severity, and fire- risk mapping were conducted on the two largest fires in North Carolina during the 2011 wildfire season, the Pains Bay Fire in Dare County and the Juniper Road Fire in Pender County. In order to show the impact of fires on the ecosystem and the extent of ecological change the fires caused, burn severity maps were created using Landsat 5 TM and the Relative difference Normalized Burn Ratio (RdNBR). To assess drought conditions, the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and Normalized Difference Moisture Index (NDMI) were derived from Landsat 5TM data to show changes in vegetation cover and moisture. In addition, MODIS Daily Surface Reflectance product (MOD09GA/MYD09GA) with the Normalized Multi-band Drought Index (NMDI) was utilized to estimate real-time drought severity of vegetation and soil moisture. Finally, Landsat 5 TM and various ancillary sources were used to create a fire risk map utilizing a Multi-criteria Evaluation (MCE) method with the new Fuzzification method in ArcGIS. Multiple variables were inserted into the MCE including soil survey data, Normalized Difference Moisture Index (NDMI), slope data obtained from ASTER Global DEM, land cover/fuel data, and proximity to roads. Methodologies using NASA EOS to acquire all end products were provided to project partners, the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge (ARNWR) and the North Carolina Forest Service (NCFS), in the form of a user tutorial to allow for a better understanding of how remote sensing can be applied to analyze wildfires

  3. Wildfires

    MedlinePlus

    Wildfires are fires that burn out of control in a natural area, like a forest, grassland, or ... of the public and firefighters. Humans cause most wildfires. It can be an accident, like when people ...

  4. Wildfires, smoke, and burn scars, near Yakutsk, Russia

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    The Lena River in central Siberia is hidden beneath a veil of smoke from multiple wildfires burning around the city of Yakutsk, Russia. Fires have been burning in the region off and on since late May 2002, and may be agricultural in cause. This image was acquired by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on the Terra satellite on July 23, 2002. In the false=-color image, vegetation is bright green, smoke is blueish-white, and burned areas are reddish-brown. In both images, fire detections are marked with red outlines. Credit: Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC

  5. NASA's MISR Instrument Sees Arizona Wildfires Burn

    NASA Video Gallery

    This animation from NASA’s Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) instrument on the Terra spacecraft show the Wallow and Horseshoe 2 Fires burning in Arizona mid-morning (local time) on Jun...

  6. Microbiology of wildfire victims differs significantly from routine burns patients: data from an Australian wildfire disaster.

    PubMed

    Sherry, Norelle L; Padiglione, Alexander A; Spelman, Denis W; Cleland, Heather

    2013-03-01

    The catastrophic wildfires of February 2009 in Victoria, Australia killed 173 people and hospitalised 18 adults with burns. We conducted a case-control study of wildfire victims (WFVs) compared to routine burns patients to assess early differences in bacteriology. Demographic, outcome and bacteriology data (for the first 72 h) were prospectively collected on all 18 WFVs, and compared to those of 36 RBPs matched 2:1 for age, gender, burns severity (total body surface area ≥20%) and ICU admission. We found that WFVs had more positive cultures overall (10/18 [56%] vs 7/36 [19%], p=0.04), and we cultured more Gram negative bacteria from wounds (11/13 [85%] vs 3/12 [25%], p=0.005). Although WFVs were more likely to culture Enterobacteriaceae (5/18 vs 2/36) and Aeromonas spp. (3/18 vs 1/36), and less likely to culture Staphylococcus aureus (2/18 vs 6/36), these differences were not statistically significant. Given the predominance of Gram negative organisms cultured from WFVs, our routine burn wound prophylaxis (intravenous cephazolin) would have been inadequate in the WFV group. We suggest that an alternative regimen of oxacillin/nafcillin/flucloxacillin plus gentamicin (or a fluoroquinolone if renal impairment present) may be more appropriate for burn wound prophylaxis in this complex group of patients.

  7. The Effect of Prescribed Burns and Wildfire on Vegetation in Bastrop State Park, TX

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Justice, C. J.

    2014-12-01

    In 2011, central Texas had its worst drought since the 1950's. This, in conjunction with the strong winds produced by Tropical Storm Lee created conditions that made possible the Bastrop County Complex Fire in September 2011. These record-breaking wildfires burned over 95% of the 6,565-acre Bastrop State Park (BSP). Since 2003, BSP had been using prescribed burns as a management practice to reduce fuel load and prevent high severity wildfires. Although these prescribed fires did not prevent the 2011 wildfires they may have mitigated their effects. This study considered the effect of prescribed burn history and wildfire burn severity on vegetation recovery in BSP since the 2011 wildfire. The hypotheses of this study are that prescribed burn history and wildfire burn severity separately and jointly have affected post wildfire vegetation. To test these hypotheses, data were collected in 2013 from 46 plots across BSP using the Fire Effects Monitoring and Inventory (FIREMON) protocol to determine herbaceous plant density, shrub density, overstory density, and midstory tree density. Data were analyzed using analyses of variance (ANOVA) to determine the effects of prescribed fire and wildfire severity on these vegetation measurements. It was found that more severely burned plots had more herbaceous plants, fewer midstory trees, and lower shrub densities than less severely burned plots. Contrary to an initial hypotheses, there were few relationships between prescribed burn history and wildfire effects. The only significant effect detected for prescribed burning was the positive effect of prescribed fire on midstory tree density, but only for plots that were not severely burned in the wildfire. In this system, burn severity had a greater effect on post-wildfire vegetation than prescribed burns.

  8. Mapping Wildfires In Nearly Real Time

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nichols, Joseph D.; Parks, Gary S.; Denning, Richard F.; Ibbott, Anthony C.; Scott, Kenneth C.; Sleigh, William J.; Voss, Jeffrey M.

    1993-01-01

    Airborne infrared-sensing system flies over wildfire as infrared detector in system and navigation subsystem generate data transmitted to firefighters' camp. There, data plotted in form of map of fire, including approximate variations of temperature. System, called Firefly, reveals position of fires and approximate thermal intensities of regions within fires. Firefighters use information to manage and suppress fires. Used for other purposes with minor modifications, such as to spot losses of heat in urban areas and to map disease and pest infestation in vegetation.

  9. Linking runoff response to burn severity after a wildfire

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Moody, J.A.; Martin, D.A.; Haire, S.L.; Kinner, D.A.

    2008-01-01

    Extreme floods often follow wildfire in mountainous watersheds. However, a quantitative relation between the runoff response and burn severity at the watershed scale has not been established. Runoff response was measured as the runoff coefficient C, which is equal to the peak discharge per unit drainage area divided by the average maximum 30 min rainfall intensity during each rain storm. The magnitude of the bum severity was expressed as the change in the normalized burn ratio. A new burn severity variable, hydraulic functional connectivity ?? was developed and incorporates both the magnitude of the burn severity and the spatial sequence of the bum severity along hillslope flow paths. The runoff response and the burn severity were measured in seven subwatersheds (0.24 to 0.85 km2) in the upper part of Rendija Canyon burned by the 2000 Cerro Grande Fire Dear Los Alamos, New Mexico, USA. A rainfall-discharge relation was determined for four of the subwatersheds with nearly the same bum severity. The peak discharge per unit drainage area Qupeak was a linear function of the maximum 30 min rainfall intensity I30. This function predicted a rainfall intensity threshold of 8.5 mm h-1 below which no runoff was generated. The runoff coefficient C = Qupeak/I30 was a linear function of the mean hydraulic functional connectivity of the subwatersheds. Moreover, the variability of the mean hydraulic functional connectivity was related to the variability of the mean runoff coefficient, and this relation provides physical insight into why the runoff response from the same subwatershed can vary for different rainstorms with the same rainfall intensity. Published in 2007 by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  10. Visualizing Global Wildfire Automated Biomass Burning Algorithm Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmidt, C. C.; Hoffman, J.; Prins, E. M.

    2013-12-01

    The Wildfire Automated Biomass Burning Algorithm (WFABBA) produces fire detection and characterization from a global constellation of geostationary satellites on a realtime basis. Presentation of this data in a timely and meaningful way has been a challenge, but as hardware and software have advanced and web tools have evolved, new options have rapidly arisen. The WFABBA team at the Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies (CIMSS) at the Space Science Engineering Center (SSEC) have begun implementation of a web-based framework that allows a user to visualize current and archived fire data from NOAA's Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES), EUMETSAT's Meteosat Second Generation (MSG), JMA's Multifunction Transport Satellite (MTSAT), and KMA's COMS series of satellites. User group needs vary from simple examination of the most recent data to multi-hour composites to animations, as well as saving datasets for further review. In order to maximize the usefulness of the data, a user-friendly and scaleable interface has been under development that will, when complete, allow access to approximately 18 years of WFABBA data, as well as the data produced in real-time. Implemented, planned, and potential additional features will be examined.

  11. Using Logistic Regression to Predict the Probability of Debris Flows in Areas Burned by Wildfires, Southern California, 2003-2006

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rupert, Michael G.; Cannon, Susan H.; Gartner, Joseph E.; Michael, John A.; Helsel, Dennis R.

    2008-01-01

    Logistic regression was used to develop statistical models that can be used to predict the probability of debris flows in areas recently burned by wildfires by using data from 14 wildfires that burned in southern California during 2003-2006. Twenty-eight independent variables describing the basin morphology, burn severity, rainfall, and soil properties of 306 drainage basins located within those burned areas were evaluated. The models were developed as follows: (1) Basins that did and did not produce debris flows soon after the 2003 to 2006 fires were delineated from data in the National Elevation Dataset using a geographic information system; (2) Data describing the basin morphology, burn severity, rainfall, and soil properties were compiled for each basin. These data were then input to a statistics software package for analysis using logistic regression; and (3) Relations between the occurrence or absence of debris flows and the basin morphology, burn severity, rainfall, and soil properties were evaluated, and five multivariate logistic regression models were constructed. All possible combinations of independent variables were evaluated to determine which combinations produced the most effective models, and the multivariate models that best predicted the occurrence of debris flows were identified. Percentage of high burn severity and 3-hour peak rainfall intensity were significant variables in all models. Soil organic matter content and soil clay content were significant variables in all models except Model 5. Soil slope was a significant variable in all models except Model 4. The most suitable model can be selected from these five models on the basis of the availability of independent variables in the particular area of interest and field checking of probability maps. The multivariate logistic regression models can be entered into a geographic information system, and maps showing the probability of debris flows can be constructed in recently burned areas of

  12. Characteristics of atmospheric ice nucleating particles associated with biomass burning in the US: Prescribed burns and wildfires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCluskey, Christina S.; DeMott, Paul J.; Prenni, Anthony J.; Levin, Ezra J. T.; McMeeking, Gavin R.; Sullivan, Amy P.; Hill, Thomas C. J.; Nakao, Shunsuke; Carrico, Christian M.; Kreidenweis, Sonia M.

    2014-09-01

    An improved understanding of atmospheric ice nucleating particles (INP), including sources and atmospheric abundance, is needed to advance our understanding of aerosol-cloud-climate interactions. This study examines diverse biomass burning events to better constrain our understanding of how fires impact populations of INP. Sampling of prescribed burns and wildfires in Colorado and Georgia, U.S.A., revealed that biomass burning leads to the release of particles that are active as condensation/immersion freezing INP at temperatures from -32 to -12°C. During prescribed burning of wiregrass, up to 64% of INP collected during smoke-impacted periods were identified as soot particles via electron microscopy analyses. Other carbonaceous types and mineral-like particles dominated INP collected during wildfires of ponderosa pine forest in Colorado. Total measured nINP and the excess nINP associated with smoke-impacted periods were higher during two wildfires compared to the prescribed burns. Interferences from non-smoke sources of INP, including long-range transported mineral dust and local contributions of soils and plant materials lofted from the wildfires themselves, presented challenges in using the observations to develop a smoke-specific nINP parameterization. Nevertheless, these field observations suggest that biomass burning may serve as an important source of INP on a regional scale, particularly during time periods that lack other robust sources of INP such as long-range transported mineral dust.

  13. Vegetation structure and fire weather influence variation in burn severity and fuel consumption during peatland wildfires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davies, G. M.; Domènech, R.; Gray, A.; Johnson, P. C. D.

    2015-09-01

    Temperate peatland wildfires are of significant environmental concern but information on their environmental effects is lacking. We assessed variation in burn severity and fuel consumption within and between wildfires that burnt British moorlands in 2011 and 2012. We adapted the Composite Burn Index (pCBI) to provide semi-quantitative estimates of burn severity. Pre- and post-fire surface (shrubs and graminoids) and ground (litter, moss, duff) fuel loads associated with large wildfires were assessed using destructive sampling and analysed using a Generalised Linear Mixed Model (GLMM). Consumption during wildfires was compared with published estimates of consumption during prescribed burns. Burn severity and fuel consumption were related to fire weather, assessed using the Canadian Fire Weather Index System (FWI System), and pre-fire fuel structure. pCBI varied 1.6 fold between, and up to 1.7 fold within, wildfires. pCBI was higher where moisture codes of the FWI System indicated drier fuels. Spatial variation in pre- and post-fire fuel load accounted for a substantial proportion of the variance in fuel loads. Average surface fuel consumption was a linear function of pre-fire fuel load. Average ground fuel combustion completeness could be predicted by the Buildup Index. Carbon release ranged between 0.36 and 1.00 kg C m-2. The flammability of ground fuel layers may explain the higher C release-rates seen for wildfires in comparison to prescribed burns. Drier moorland community types appear to be at greater risk of severe burns than blanket-bog communities.

  14. Vegetation structure and fire weather influence variation in burn severity and fuel consumption during peatland wildfires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davies, G. M.; Domènech, R.; Gray, A.; Johnson, P. C. D.

    2016-01-01

    Temperate peatland wildfires are of significant environmental concern but information on their environmental effects is lacking. We assessed variation in burn severity and fuel consumption within and between wildfires that burnt British moorlands in 2011 and 2012. We adapted the composite burn index (pCBI) to provide semi-quantitative estimates of burn severity. Pre- and post-fire surface (shrubs and graminoids) and ground (litter, moss, duff) fuel loads associated with large wildfires were assessed using destructive sampling and analysed using a generalised linear mixed model (GLMM). Consumption during wildfires was compared with published estimates of consumption during prescribed burns. Burn severity and fuel consumption were related to fire weather, assessed using the Canadian Fire Weather Index System (FWI System), and pre-fire vegetation type. pCBI varied 1.6 fold between, and up to 1.7 fold within, wildfires. pCBI was higher where moisture codes of the FWI System indicated drier fuels. Spatial variation in pre- and post-fire fuel load accounted for a substantial proportion of the variance in fuel loads. Average surface fuel consumption was a linear function of pre-fire fuel load. Average ground fuel combustion completeness could be predicted by the Buildup Index. Carbon release ranged between 0.36 and 1.00 kg C m-2. The flammability of ground fuel layers may explain the higher C release-rates seen for wildfires in comparison to prescribed burns. Drier moorland community types appear to be at greater risk of severe burns than blanket-bog communities.

  15. Wildfire seasonality and land use: when do wildfires prefer to burn?

    PubMed

    Bajocco, Sofia; Pezzatti, Gianni Boris; Mazzoleni, Stefano; Ricotta, Carlo

    2010-05-01

    Because of the increasing anthropogenic fire activity, understanding the role of land-use in shaping wildfire regimes has become a major concern. In the last decade, an increasing number of studies have been carried out on the relationship between land-use and wildfire patterns, in order to identify land-use types where fire behaves selectively, showing a marked preference (or avoidance) in terms of fire incidence. By contrast, the temporal aspects of the relationship between landuse types and wildfire occurrence have received far less attention. The aim of this paper is, thus, to analyze the temporal patterns of fire occurrence in Sardinia (Italy) during the period 2000-2006 to identify land-use types where wildfires occur earlier or later than expected from a random null model. The study highlighted a close relationship between the timing of fire occurrence and land-cover that is primarily governed by two complementary processes: climatic factors that act indirectly on the timing of wildfires determining the spatial distribution of land-use types, and human population and human pressure that directly influence fire ignition. From a practical viewpoint, understanding the temporal trends of wildfires within the different land-use classes can be an effective decision-support tool for fire agencies in managing fire risk and for producing provisional models of fire behavior under changing climatic scenarios and evolving landscapes.

  16. Wildfire susceptibility mapping: comparing deterministic and stochastic approaches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pereira, Mário; Leuenberger, Michael; Parente, Joana; Tonini, Marj

    2016-04-01

    Estimating the probability of wildfire-occurrence in a certain area under particular environmental conditions represents a modern tool to support forest protection plans and to reduce fires consequences. This can be performed by the implementation of wildfire susceptibility mapping, normally achieved employing more or less sophisticated models which combine the predisposing variables (as raster datasets) into a geographic information systems (GIS). The selection of the appropriate variables includes the evaluation of success and the implementation of prediction curves, as well as independent probabilistic validations for different scenarios. These methods allow to define the spatial pattern of wildfire-occurrences, characterize the susceptibility of the territory, namely for specific fire causes/types, and can also account for other factors such as human behavior and social aspects. We selected Portugal as the study region which, due to its favorable climatic, topographic and vegetation conditions, is by far the European country most affected by wildfires. In addition, Verde and Zêzere (2010) performed a first assessment and validation of wildfire susceptibility and hazard in Portugal which can be used as benchmarking. The objectives of the present study comprise: (1) assessing the structural forest fire risk in Portugal using updated datasets, namely, with higher spatial resolution (80 m to 25 m), most recent vegetation cover (Corine Land Cover), longer fire history (1975-2013); and, (2) comparing linear vs non-linear approaches for wildfire susceptibility mapping. The data we used includes: (i) a DEM derived from the Shuttle Radar Topographic Mission in a resolution of 1 arc-seconds (DEM-SRTM 25 m) to assess elevation and slope; (ii) the Corine Land Cover inventory provided by the European Environment Agency (http://www.eea.europa.eu/pt) to produce the land use land cover map; (iii) the National Mapping Burnt Areas (NMBA) provided by the Institute for the

  17. Data Mining and the Twitter Platform for Prescribed Burn and Wildfire Incident Reporting with Geospatial Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Endsley, K.; McCarty, J. L.

    2012-12-01

    Data mining techniques have been applied to social media in a variety of contexts, from mapping the evolution of the Tahrir Square protests in Egypt to predicting influenza outbreaks. The Twitter platform is a particular favorite due to its robust application programming interface (API) and high throughput. Twitter, Inc. estimated in 2011 that over 2,200 messages or "tweets" are generated every second. Also helpful is Twitter's semblance in operation to the short message service (SMS), better known as "texting," available on cellular phones and the most popular means of wide telecommunications in many developing countries. In the United States, Twitter has been used by a number of federal, state and local officials as well as motivated individuals to report prescribed burns in advance (sometimes as part of a reporting obligation) or to communicate the emergence, response to, and containment of wildfires. These reports are unstructured and, like all Twitter messages, limited to 140 UTF-8 characters. Through internal research and development at the Michigan Tech Research Institute, the authors have developed a data mining routine that gathers potential tweets of interest using the Twitter API, eliminates duplicates ("retweets"), and extracts relevant information such as the approximate size and condition of the fire. Most importantly, the message is geocoded and/or contains approximate locational information, allowing for prescribed and wildland fires to be mapped. Natural language processing techniques, adapted to improve computational performance, are used to tokenize and tag these elements for each tweet. The entire routine is implemented in the Python programming language, using open-source libraries. As such, it is demonstrated in a web-based framework where prescribed burns and/or wildfires are mapped in real time, visualized through a JavaScript-based mapping client in any web browser. The practices demonstrated here generalize to an SMS platform (or any short

  18. Air quality impact and physicochemical aging of biomass burning aerosols during the 2007 San Diego wildfires.

    PubMed

    Zauscher, Melanie D; Wang, Ying; Moore, Meagan J K; Gaston, Cassandra J; Prather, Kimberly A

    2013-07-16

    Intense wildfires burning >360000 acres in San Diego during October, 2007 provided a unique opportunity to study the impact of wildfires on local air quality and biomass burning aerosol (BBA) aging. The size-resolved mixing state of individual particles was measured in real-time with an aerosol time-of-flight mass spectrometer (ATOFMS) for 10 days after the fires commenced. Particle concentrations were high county-wide due to the wildfires; 84% of 120-400 nm particles by number were identified as BBA, with particles <400 nm contributing to mass concentrations dangerous to public health, up to 148 μg/m(3). Evidence of potassium salts heterogeneously reacting with inorganic acids was observed with continuous high temporal resolution for the first time. Ten distinct chemical types shown as BBA factors were identified through positive matrix factorization coupled to single particle analysis, including particles comprised of potassium chloride and organic nitrogen during the beginning of the wildfires, ammonium nitrate and amines after an increase of relative humidity, and sulfate dominated when the air mass back trajectories passed through the Los Angeles port region. Understanding BBA aging processes and quantifying the size-resolved mass and number concentrations are important in determining the overall impact of wildfires on air quality, health, and climate.

  19. Postfire soil burn severity mapping with hyperspectral image unmixing

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Robichaud, P.R.; Lewis, S.A.; Laes, D.Y.M.; Hudak, A.T.; Kokaly, R.F.; Zamudio, J.A.

    2007-01-01

    Burn severity is mapped after wildfires to evaluate immediate and long-term fire effects on the landscape. Remotely sensed hyperspectral imagery has the potential to provide important information about fine-scale ground cover components that are indicative of burn severity after large wildland fires. Airborne hyperspectral imagery and ground data were collected after the 2002 Hayman Fire in Colorado to assess the application of high resolution imagery for burn severity mapping and to compare it to standard burn severity mapping methods. Mixture Tuned Matched Filtering (MTMF), a partial spectral unmixing algorithm, was used to identify the spectral abundance of ash, soil, and scorched and green vegetation in the burned area. The overall performance of the MTMF for predicting the ground cover components was satisfactory (r2 = 0.21 to 0.48) based on a comparison to fractional ash, soil, and vegetation cover measured on ground validation plots. The relationship between Landsat-derived differenced Normalized Burn Ratio (dNBR) values and the ground data was also evaluated (r2 = 0.20 to 0.58) and found to be comparable to the MTMF. However, the quantitative information provided by the fine-scale hyperspectral imagery makes it possible to more accurately assess the effects of the fire on the soil surface by identifying discrete ground cover characteristics. These surface effects, especially soil and ash cover and the lack of any remaining vegetative cover, directly relate to potential postfire watershed response processes. ?? 2006 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Planned burning vs. wildfire impact on soil methane flux - implications for forest fire management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fest, Benedikt; Wardlaw, Tim; Livesley, Stephen; Arndt, Stefan

    2014-05-01

    Soils in forests ecosystem represent the largest land based methane sink and therefore provide an important ecosystem service. Fire can alter soil properties linked to soil methane uptake potential but this has rarely been studied to date. We measured soil methane flux in a dry-sclerophyll eucalypt forest (Victoria, Australia) that had different planned burning frequency treatments applied (every 3 and 10 years) in the last 27 years. We also studied soil methane flux along a wildfire chronosequence spanning over 200 years (Tasmania, Australia). Our data show that planned fires and wildfires had contrasting effects on methane uptake of the forest soils. The repeated planned burning treatments did not alter methane flux patterns of forest soil. In the wildfire chronosequence the methane uptake capacity of the forest soil was closely related to structural changes during stand development likely linked to stand water use, with drier forest stands having greater methane uptake. Our data demonstrate that unmanaged wildfire can have substantial impact on the methane sink capacity of forest ecosystems in Australia while the less intense planned fires have little effect. The effects of fire were more related to changes in stand structure rather than impacts of fire on soils per se.

  1. Inclusion of biomass burning in WRF-Chem: Impact of wildfires on weather forecasts

    SciTech Connect

    Grell, G. A.; Freitas, Saulo; Stuefer, Martin; Fast, Jerome D.

    2011-06-06

    A plume rise algorithm for wildfires was included in WRF-Chem, and applied to look at the impact of intense wildfires during the 2004 Alaska wildfire season on weather forecasts using model resolutions of 10km and 2km. Biomass burning emissions were estimated using a biomass burning emissions model. In addition, a 1-D, time-dependent cloud model was used online in WRF-Chem to estimate injection heights as well as the final emission rates. It was shown that with the inclusion of the intense wildfires of the 2004 fire season in the model simulations, the interaction of the aerosols with the atmospheric radiation led to significant modifications of vertical profiles of temperature and moisture in cloud-free areas. On the other hand, when clouds were present, the high concentrations of fine aerosol (PM2.5) and the resulting large numbers of Cloud Condensation Nuclei (CCN) had a strong impact on clouds and microphysics, with decreased precipitation coverage and precipitation amounts during the first 12 hours of the integration, but significantly stronger storms during the afternoon hours.

  2. Preliminary Analytical Results for Ash and Burned Soils from the October 2007 Southern California Wildfires

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Plumlee, Geoffrey S.; Martin, Deborah A.; Hoefen, Todd; Kokaly, Raymond F.; Hageman, Philip; Eckberg, Alison; Meeker, Gregory P.; Adams, Monique; Anthony, Michael; Lamothe, Paul J.

    2007-01-01

    Overview The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) collected ash and burned soils from about 28 sites in southern California wildfire areas (Harris, Witch, Ammo, Santiago, Canyon and Grass Valley) from Nov. 2 through 9, 2007 (table 1). USGS researchers are applying a wide variety of analytical methods to these samples, with the goal of helping identify characteristics of the ash and soils from wildland and suburban burned areas that may be of concern for their potential to adversely affect water quality, human health, endangered species, and debris-flow or flooding hazards. These studies are part of the Southern California Multi-Hazards Demonstration Project, and preliminary findings are presented here.

  3. Modelling Carbon Emissions in Calluna vulgaris-Dominated Ecosystems when Prescribed Burning and Wildfires Interact.

    PubMed

    Santana, Victor M; Alday, Josu G; Lee, HyoHyeMi; Allen, Katherine A; Marrs, Rob H

    2016-01-01

    A present challenge in fire ecology is to optimize management techniques so that ecological services are maximized and C emissions minimized. Here, we modeled the effects of different prescribed-burning rotation intervals and wildfires on carbon emissions (present and future) in British moorlands. Biomass-accumulation curves from four Calluna-dominated ecosystems along a north-south gradient in Great Britain were calculated and used within a matrix-model based on Markov Chains to calculate above-ground biomass-loads and annual C emissions under different prescribed-burning rotation intervals. Additionally, we assessed the interaction of these parameters with a decreasing wildfire return intervals. We observed that litter accumulation patterns varied between sites. Northern sites (colder and wetter) accumulated lower amounts of litter with time than southern sites (hotter and drier). The accumulation patterns of the living vegetation dominated by Calluna were determined by site-specific conditions. The optimal prescribed-burning rotation interval for minimizing annual carbon emissions also differed between sites: the optimal rotation interval for northern sites was between 30 and 50 years, whereas for southern sites a hump-backed relationship was found with the optimal interval either between 8 to 10 years or between 30 to 50 years. Increasing wildfire frequency interacted with prescribed-burning rotation intervals by both increasing C emissions and modifying the optimum prescribed-burning interval for minimum C emission. This highlights the importance of studying site-specific biomass accumulation patterns with respect to environmental conditions for identifying suitable fire-rotation intervals to minimize C emissions.

  4. Modelling Carbon Emissions in Calluna vulgaris–Dominated Ecosystems when Prescribed Burning and Wildfires Interact

    PubMed Central

    Santana, Victor M.; Alday, Josu G.; Lee, HyoHyeMi; Allen, Katherine A.; Marrs, Rob H.

    2016-01-01

    A present challenge in fire ecology is to optimize management techniques so that ecological services are maximized and C emissions minimized. Here, we modeled the effects of different prescribed-burning rotation intervals and wildfires on carbon emissions (present and future) in British moorlands. Biomass-accumulation curves from four Calluna-dominated ecosystems along a north-south gradient in Great Britain were calculated and used within a matrix-model based on Markov Chains to calculate above-ground biomass-loads and annual C emissions under different prescribed-burning rotation intervals. Additionally, we assessed the interaction of these parameters with a decreasing wildfire return intervals. We observed that litter accumulation patterns varied between sites. Northern sites (colder and wetter) accumulated lower amounts of litter with time than southern sites (hotter and drier). The accumulation patterns of the living vegetation dominated by Calluna were determined by site-specific conditions. The optimal prescribed-burning rotation interval for minimizing annual carbon emissions also differed between sites: the optimal rotation interval for northern sites was between 30 and 50 years, whereas for southern sites a hump-backed relationship was found with the optimal interval either between 8 to 10 years or between 30 to 50 years. Increasing wildfire frequency interacted with prescribed-burning rotation intervals by both increasing C emissions and modifying the optimum prescribed-burning interval for minimum C emission. This highlights the importance of studying site-specific biomass accumulation patterns with respect to environmental conditions for identifying suitable fire-rotation intervals to minimize C emissions. PMID:27880840

  5. Can post-wildfire Burned Area Emergency Response treatments mitigate watershed degradation?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neary, D.; Ffolliott, P.; Bautista, S.; Wittenberg, L.

    2009-04-01

    Wildfire is a natural phenomenon that began with the development of terrestrial vegetation in a lightning-filled atmosphere 350 million years ago. As human populations developed in the Pleistocene and Holocene epochs, mankind transformed fire into one of its oldest tools. A negative impact of prime concern in the 21st Century is desertification. This term refers to land degradation, not the immediate creation of classical deserts. It is about the loss of the land's proper hydrologic function and biological productivity as a result of human activities and climate change. It affects 33% of the earth's surface and over a billion people. Fire-related desertification has a number of environmental, social, and economic consequences. The two key environmental consequences are soil erosion and exotic plant invasions. Wildfires typically have exotic plant species abundances ten times that of undisturbed forests (Neary et al. 2003). Seeding has been used for many years in the USA as a prime Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) treatment. Until recently, this seeding contributed to exotic plant invasions since fast-growing, but non native plants seeds were used. The use of native plant seeds and sterile hybrids has reduced this problem somewhat. Erosion after wildfires documented in the USA can be in the range of <1 to 370 Mg/ha, depending on fire severity, degree of water repellency, slope, and post-fire rainfall events. Soil losses in the high end of that range definitely exceed soil loss tolerances and contribute to desertification. Soil disturbance and degradation after wildfires is a function of fire severity, and the impacts can range from the minimal to catastrophic and long-lasting. The most obvious impact is the loss of organic matter from combustion of the forest floor. Changes in soil physical and chemical properties with high-severity wildfire can produce water repellency, aggravating rainfall runoff and erosion. Since soils take long times to form (50 to 75

  6. Seasonal Variability in Boreal Wildfire Activity Associated with Landscape Patterns of Burned Area

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrett, K. M.; Kasischke, E. S.

    2012-12-01

    Wildfire is the most prominent disturbance in the boreal forest, effecting changes in stand age and vegetation composition often over thousands of square kilometers. The effect of wildfire on ecosystem structure and function depends heavily on the seasonality of the burn, and periods of seasonally high fire activity are highly sporadic. The majority of area in Alaska that burns in a fire season does so during relatively short periods of high fire activity. These periods, which can be determined from active fire detections or fire management agency data records, are caused by elevated air temperatures and low precipitation which decrease fuel moisture and encourage the spread of fire. While fire fronts dominate during periods of low fire activity, more active periods have a higher proportion of residual burning which remains after a front has passed through. Residual burning is likely responsible for the extensive combustion of surface organic materials in the boreal forest, which can lead to post-fire changes in dominant vegetation type. Seasonal variations in fire activity are therefore an important factor in the mosaic of severity conditions across large burned areas and shifts in land cover over successional time scales. The purpose of this study is to characterize the temporal and spatial variability in periods of seasonal high fire activity that influence patterns of burned area. In large burns, unburned areas within a fire scar may serve as an important seed stock during post-fire recruitment. These areas may also feedback to future fire regimes through the preservation of more fire-resistant vegetation in unburned "islands".

  7. Debris-flow susceptibility of watersheds recently burned by wildfire

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cannon, S.H.

    2004-01-01

    Evaluation of the erosional response of 95 recently burned watersheds in Colorado, New Mexico, and southern California to storm rainfall established the factors that best differentiate between debris-flow producing basins and those that produced other flow responses. These factors are drainage-basin morphology and lithology, and the presence or absence of water-repellent soils. Basins underlain by sedimentary rocks were most likely to produce debris flows that contain large material, and sand- and gravel-dominated debris flows were generated primarily from terrain underlain by decomposed granite. Basin-area and relief thresholds define the morphologic conditions under which both types of debris flows occurred. Debris flows containing large material were more likely to be produced from basins without water-repellent soils than from basins with water repellency. The occurrence of sand and gravel-dominated debris flows depended on the presence of water repellent soils. Copyright 2004 ASCE.

  8. Biomass burning smoke episodes in Finland from Eastern European wildfires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leino, Katri E.; Riuttanen, Laura; Nieminen, Tuomo; Dal Maso, Miikka; Väänänen, Riikka; Pohja, Toivo; Keronen, Petri; Järvi, Leena; Aalto, Pasi P.; Virkkula, Aki; Kerminen, Veli-Matti; Petäjä, Tuukka; Kulmala, Markku

    2014-05-01

    Biomass burning emissions from Eastern Europe are occasionally observed in Finland. In spring of 2006 and the late summers of 2006 and 2010, smoke plumes were transported to large parts of Finland. By combining multiple methods we were able to study the horizontal and vertical properties of long-range transported smoke plume, as well as time evolution of particle number size distributions in an aged biomass burning smoke. In this study we used trace gas and aerosol particle number size distribution measurements at three SMEAR stations (Station for Measuring Forest Ecosystem - Atmosphere Relations; Ruuskanen et al., 2003; Hari & Kulmala, 2005; Järvi et al., 2009). Vertical distribution of the smoke was studied by a small aircraft, Cessna FR172F, instrumented with Ultrafine Condensation Particle Counter and CO2/H2O -gas analyser. The airborne measurements were compared with vertical profiles from a polarization-sensitive, two-wavelength lidar (CALIOP; the Cloud-Aerosol Lidar with Orthogonal Polarization; Winker et al., 2009) onboard the CALIPSO satellite (the Cloud-Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder Satellite Observation). HYSPLIT 4 (Hybrid Single Particle Lagrangian Integrated Trajectory Model; Draxler, 1999) backward trajectories as well as MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) Terra thermal anomalies data (MOD14A1) were used together with synoptic analyses to study the transport and the horizontal distribution of the smoke. In the spring 2006, there was a blocking high pressure system in Eastern Europe and smoke from the Eastern European fires was transported far to the north-west. The smoke episode in Finland lasted for two weeks. In summers of 2006 and 2010 the smoke came to Finland in a warm sector of a low-pressure system and the episodes lasted for less than two days. Smoke plumes had elevated concentrations of aerosol particles, black carbon and CO, and varying concentrations of CO2, SO2, O3 and NOx. The difference to the background air

  9. Montana Wildfires

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2014-05-15

    article title:  Montana Wildfires     View larger image ... in the early summer of 2012 has been on the destructive wildfires in Colorado, as of July 3, 2012, dozens of major wildfires were burning across the western United States, including six in ...

  10. Black Carbon in the Arctic: Assessment of and efforts to reduce black carbon emissions from wildfires and agricultural burning in Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kinder, B.; Hao, W. M.; Larkin, N. K.; McCarty, G.; O'neal, K. J.; Gonzalez, O.; Luxenberg, J.; Rosenblum, M.; Petkov, A.

    2011-12-01

    Black carbon and other short-lived climate forcers exert a warming effect on the climate but remain in the atmosphere for short time periods when compared to carbon dioxide. Black carbon is a significant contributor to increasing temperatures in the Arctic region, which has warmed at twice the global rate over the past 100 years. Black carbon warms the Arctic by absorbing incoming solar radiation while in the atmosphere and, when deposited onto Arctic ice, leading to increased atmospheric temperatures and snow and ice melt. Black carbon remains in the atmosphere for a short time period ranging from days to weeks; therefore, local atmospheric conditions at the time of burning determine the amount of black carbon transport to the Arctic. Most black carbon transport and deposition in the Arctic results from the occurrence of wildfires, prescribed forest fires, and agricultural burning at latitudes greater than 40 degrees north latitude. Wildfire affects some 10-15 million hectares of forest, forest steppe, and grasslands in Russia each year. In addition to wildfire, there is widespread cropland burning in Russia occurring in the fall following harvest and in the spring prior to tilling. Agricultural burning is common practice for crop residue removal as well as suppression of weeds, insects and residue-borne diseases. The goal of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Black Carbon Initiative is to assess black carbon emissions from agricultural burning and wildfires in Russia and explore practical options and opportunities for reducing emissions from these two sources. The emissions assessment combines satellite-derived burned area measurements of forest and agricultural fires, burn severity information, ancillary geospatial data, vegetation and land cover maps, fuels data, fire emissions data, fire/weather relationship information, and smoke transport models to estimate black carbon transport and deposition in the Arctic. The assessment addresses

  11. Exposure to bushfire smoke during prescribed burns and wildfires: firefighters' exposure risks and options.

    PubMed

    Reisen, Fabienne; Hansen, Dane; Meyer, C P Mick

    2011-02-01

    Firefighters are exposed to known health-damaging air pollutants present in bushfire smoke and poorly managed exposure can result in serious health issues. A better understanding of exposure levels and the major factors influencing exposures is crucial for the development of mitigation strategies to minimise exposure risks and adverse health impacts. This study monitored air toxics within the breathing zone of firefighters at prescribed burns and at wildfires in Australia. The results showed that exposure levels were highly variable, with higher exposures (sometimes exceeding occupational exposure standards) associated with particular work tasks (such as patrol and suppression) and with certain burn conditions. The majority of firefighter's exposures were at low and moderate levels (~60%), however considerable attention should be given to the high (~30%) and very high (6%) exposure risk situations for which acute and chronic health risks are very likely and for which control strategies should be developed and implemented to minimise health risks.

  12. Comparing the Influence of Wildfire and Prescribed Burns on Watershed Nitrogen Biogeochemistry Using 15N Natural Abundance in Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystem Components

    PubMed Central

    Stephan, Kirsten; Kavanagh, Kathleen L.; Koyama, Akihiro

    2015-01-01

    We evaluated differences in the effects of three low-severity spring prescribed burns and four wildfires on nitrogen (N) biogeochemistry in Rocky Mountain headwater watersheds. We compared paired (burned/unburned) watersheds of four wildfires and three spring prescribed burns for three growing seasons post-fire. To better understand fire effects on the entire watershed ecosystem, we measured N concentrations and δ15N in both the terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems components, i.e., soil, understory plants in upland and riparian areas, streamwater, and in-stream moss. In addition, we measured nitrate reductase activity in foliage of Spiraea betulifolia, a dominant understory species. We found increases of δ15N and N concentrations in both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystem N pools after wildfire, but responses were limited to terrestrial N pools after prescribed burns indicating that N transfer from terrestrial to aquatic ecosystem components did not occur in low-severity prescribed burns. Foliar δ15N differed between wildfire and prescribed burn sites; the δ15N of foliage of upland plants was enriched by 2.9 ‰ (difference between burned and unburned watersheds) in the first two years after wildfire, but only 1.3 ‰ after prescribed burns. In-stream moss δ15N in wildfire-burned watersheds was enriched by 1.3 ‰, but there was no response by moss in prescription-burned watersheds, mirroring patterns of streamwater nitrate concentrations. S. betulifolia showed significantly higher nitrate reductase activity two years after wildfires relative to corresponding unburned watersheds, but no such difference was found after prescribed burns. These responses are consistent with less altered N biogeochemistry after prescribed burns relative to wildfire. We concluded that δ15N values in terrestrial and aquatic plants and streamwater nitrate concentrations after fire can be useful indicators of the magnitude and duration of fire effects and the fate of post

  13. Provision of a wildfire risk map: informing residents in the wildland urban interface.

    PubMed

    Mozumder, Pallab; Helton, Ryan; Berrens, Robert P

    2009-11-01

    Wildfires in the wildland urban interface (WUI) are an increasing concern throughout the western United States and elsewhere. WUI communities continue to grow and thus increase the wildfire risk to human lives and property. Information such as a wildfire risk map can inform WUI residents of potential risks and may help to efficiently sort mitigation efforts. This study uses the survey-based contingent valuation (CV) method to examine annual household willingness to pay (WTP) for the provision of a wildfire risk map. Data were collected through a mail survey of the East Mountain WUI area in the State of New Mexico (USA). The integrated empirical approach includes a system of equations that involves joint estimation of WTP values, along with measures of a respondent's risk perception and risk mitigation behavior. The median estimated WTP is around U.S. $12 for the annual wildfire risk map, which covers at least the costs of producing and distributing available risk information. Further, providing a wildfire risk map can help address policy goals emphasizing information gathering and sharing among stakeholders to mitigate the effects of wildfires.

  14. Sample Collection of Ash and Burned Soils from the October 2007 Southern California Wildfires

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hoefen, Todd M.; Kokaly, Raymond F.; Martin, Deborah A.; Rochester, Carlton; Plumlee, Geoffrey S.; Mendez, Greg; Reichard, Eric G.; Fisher, Robert N.

    2009-01-01

    Between November 2 through 9, 2007 scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) collected samples of ash and burned soils from 28 sites in six areas burned as a result of the Southern California wildfires of October 2007, including the Harris, Witch, Santiago, Ammo, Canyon, and Grass Valley Fires. The primary goal of this sampling and analysis effort was to understand how differences in ash and burned soil composition relate to vegetation type, underlying bedrock geology, burn intensity, and residential versus wildland. Sampling sites were chosen with the input of local experts from the USGS Water Resources and Biological Resources Disciplines to help understand possible effects of the fires on water supplies, ecosystems, and endangered species. The sampling was also carried out in conjunction with detailed field analysis of the spectral reflectance characteristics of the ash, so that chemical and mineralogical characteristics of the field samples could be used to help interpret data collected as part of an airborne, hyperspectral remote-sensing survey of several of the burned areas in mid-late November, 2007. This report presents an overview of the field sampling methodologies used to collect the samples, includes representative photos of the sites sampled, and summarizes important characteristics of each of the collection sites. In this report we use the term 'ash' to refer collectively to white mineral ash, which results from full combustion of vegetation and black charred organic matter from partial combustion of vegetation or other materials. These materials were found to be intermingled as a deposited residue on the soil surface following the Southern California fires of 2007.

  15. Vegetation burn severity mapping using Landsat-8 and WorldView-2

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wu, Zhuoting; Middleton, Barry R.; Hetzler, Robert; Vogel, John M.; Dye, Dennis G.

    2015-01-01

    We used remotely sensed data from the Landsat-8 and WorldView-2 satellites to estimate vegetation burn severity of the Creek Fire on the San Carlos Apache Reservation, where wildfire occurrences affect the Tribe's crucial livestock and logging industries. Accurate pre- and post-fire canopy maps at high (0.5-meter) resolution were created from World- View-2 data to generate canopy loss maps, and multiple indices from pre- and post-fire Landsat-8 images were used to evaluate vegetation burn severity. Normalized difference vegetation index based vegetation burn severity map had the highest correlation coefficients with canopy loss map from WorldView-2. Two distinct approaches - canopy loss mapping from WorldView-2 and spectral index differencing from Landsat-8 - agreed well with the field-based burn severity estimates and are both effective for vegetation burn severity mapping. Canopy loss maps created with WorldView-2 imagery add to a short list of accurate vegetation burn severity mapping techniques that can help guide effective management of forest resources on the San Carlos Apache Reservation, and the broader fire-prone regions of the Southwest.

  16. Trying Not to Get Burned: Understanding Homeowners' Wildfire Risk-Mitigation Behaviors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brenkert-Smith, Hannah; Champ, Patricia A.; Flores, Nicholas

    2012-12-01

    Three causes have been identified for the spiraling cost of wildfire suppression in the United States: climate change, fuel accumulation from past wildfire suppression, and development in fire-prone areas. Because little is likely to be performed to halt the effects of climate on wildfire risk, and because fuel-management budgets cannot keep pace with fuel accumulation let alone reverse it, changing the behaviors of existing and potential homeowners in fire-prone areas is the most promising approach to decreasing the cost of suppressing wildfires in the wildland-urban interface and increasing the odds of homes surviving wildfire events. Wildfire education efforts encourage homeowners to manage their property to decrease wildfire risk. Such programs may be more effective with a better understanding of the factors related to homeowners' decisions to undertake wildfire risk-reduction actions. In this study, we measured whether homeowners had implemented 12 wildfire risk-mitigation measures in 2 Colorado Front Range counties. We found that wildfire information received from local volunteer fire departments and county wildfire specialists, as well as talking with neighbors about wildfire, were positively associated with higher levels of mitigation. Firsthand experience in the form of preparing for or undertaking an evacuation was also associated with a higher level of mitigation. Finally, homeowners who perceived higher levels of wildfire risk on their property had undertaken higher levels of wildfire-risk mitigation on their property.

  17. Evaluating the accuracy of a MODIS direct broadcast algorithm for mapping burned areas over Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petkov, A.; Hao, W. M.; Nordgren, B.; Corley, R.; Urbanski, S. P.; Ponomarev, E. I.

    2012-12-01

    Emission inventories for open area biomass burning rely on burned area estimates as a key component. We have developed an automated algorithm based on MODerate resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) satellite instrument data for estimating burned area from biomass fires. The algorithm is based on active fire detections, burn scars from MODIS calibrated radiances (MOD02HKM), and MODIS land cover classification (MOD12Q1). Our burned area product combines active fires and burn scar detections using spatio-temporal criteria, and has a resolution of 500 x 500 meters. The algorithm has been used for smoke emission estimates over the western United States. We will present the assessed accuracy of our algorithm in different regions of Russia with intense wildfire activity by comparing our results with the burned area product from the Sukachev Institute of Forest (SIF) of the Russian Academy of Sciences in Krasnoyarsk, Russia, as well as burn scars extracted from Landsat imagery. Landsat burned area extraction was based on threshold classification using the Jenks Natural Breaks algorithm to the histogram for each singe scene Normalized Burn Ratio (NBR) image. The final evaluation consisted of a grid-based approach, where the burned area in each 3 km x 3 km grid cell was calculated and compared with the other two sources. A comparison between our burned area estimates and those from SIF showed strong correlation (R2=0.978), although our estimate is approximately 40% lower than the SIF burned areas. The linear fit between the burned area from Landsat scenes and our MODIS algorithm over 18,754 grid cells resulted with a slope of 0.998 and R2=0.7, indicating that our algorithm is suitable for mapping burned areas for fires in boreal forests and other ecosystems. The results of our burned area algorithm will be used for estimating emissions of trace gasses and aerosol particles (including black carbon) from biomass burning in Northern Eurasia for the period of 2002-2011.

  18. Leachate Geochemical Results for Ash and Burned Soil Samples from the October 2007 Southern California Wildfires

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hageman, Philip L.; Plumlee, Geoffrey S.; Martin, Deborah A.; Hoefen, Todd M.; Meeker, Gregory P.; Adams, Monique; Lamothe, Paul J.; Anthony, Michael W.

    2008-01-01

    This report is the second release of leachate geochemical data included as part of a multidisciplinary study of ash and burned soil samples from the October 2007 wildfires in southern California. Geochemical data for the first set of samples were released in an Open-File Report (Plumlee and others, 2007). This study is a continuation of that work. The objectives of this leaching study are to aid in understanding the interactions of ash and burned soil with rainfall. For this study, 12 samples collected in early November 2007 were leached using the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Field Leach Test (FLT). Following leaching, sub-samples of the leachate were analyzed for pH and specific conductance. The leachate was then filtered, and aliquots were preserved for geochemical analysis. This report presents leachate geochemical data for pH, specific conductance, alkalinity, anions using ion chromatography (I.C.), cations using inductively coupled plasma?atomic mass spectrometry (ICP-MS), and mercury by continuous flow injection?cold vapor?atomic fluorescence (CVAFS).

  19. Wildfire impacts on the processes that generate debris flows in burned watersheds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Parise, M.; Cannon, S.H.

    2012-01-01

    Every year, and in many countries worldwide, wildfires cause significant damage and economic losses due to both the direct effects of the fires and the subsequent accelerated runoff, erosion, and debris flow. Wildfires can have profound effects on the hydrologic response of watersheds by changing the infiltration characteristics and erodibility of the soil, which leads to decreased rainfall infiltration, significantly increased overland flow and runoff in channels, and movement of soil. Debris-flow activity is among the most destructive consequences of these changes, often causing extensive damage to human infrastructure. Data from the Mediterranean area and Western United States of America help identify the primary processes that result in debris flows in recently burned areas. Two primary processes for the initiation of fire-related debris flows have been so far identified: (1) runoff-dominated erosion by surface overland flow; and (2) infiltration-triggered failure and mobilization of a discrete landslide mass. The first process is frequently documented immediately post-fire and leads to the generation of debris flows through progressive bulking of storm runoff with sediment eroded from the hillslopes and channels. As sediment is incorporated into water, runoff can convert to debris flow. The conversion to debris flow may be observed at a position within a drainage network that appears to be controlled by threshold values of upslope contributing area and its gradient. At these locations, sufficient eroded material has been incorporated, relative to the volume of contributing surface runoff, to generate debris flows. Debris flows have also been generated from burned basins in response to increased runoff by water cascading over a steep, bedrock cliff, and incorporating material from readily erodible colluvium or channel bed. Post-fire debris flows have also been generated by infiltration-triggered landslide failures which then mobilize into debris flows. However

  20. Size and mass distributions of ground-level sub-micrometer biomass burning aerosol from small wildfires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Okoshi, Rintaro; Rasheed, Abdur; Chen Reddy, Greeshma; McCrowey, Clinton J.; Curtis, Daniel B.

    2014-06-01

    Biomass burning emits large amounts of aerosol particles globally, influencing human health and climate, but the number and size of the particles is highly variable depending on fuel type, burning and meteorological conditions, and secondary reactions in the atmosphere. Ambient measurements of aerosol during wildfire events can therefore improve our understanding of particulate matter produced from biomass burning. In this study, time-resolved sub-micrometer ambient aerosol size and mass distributions of freshly emitted aerosol were measured for three biomass burning wildfire events near Northridge, California, located in the highly populated San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles. One fire (Marek) was observed during the dry Santa Ana conditions that are typically present during large Southern California wildfires, but two smaller fires (Getty and Camarillo) were observed during the more predominant non-Santa Ana weather conditions. Although the fires were generally small and extinguished quickly, they produced particle number concentrations as high as 50,000 cm-3 and mass concentrations as large as 150 μg cm-3, well above background measurements and among the highest values observed for fires in Southern California. Therefore, small wildfires can have a large impact on air quality if they occur near urban areas. Particle number distributions were lognormal, with peak diameters in the accumulation mode at approximately 100 nm. However, significant Aitken mode and nucleation mode particles were observed in bimodal distributions for one fire. Significant variations in the median diameter were observed over time, as particles generally became smaller as the fires were contained. The results indicate that it is likely that performing mass measurements alone could systematically miss detection of the smaller particles and size measurements may be better suited for studies of ambient biomass burning events. Parameters of representative unimodal and bimodal lognormal

  1. Does wildfire ash block soil pores? A micromorphological analysis of burned soils.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balfour, V.; Woods, S. W.

    2007-12-01

    Increases in runoff and erosion after forest wildfires are often attributed to the removal of surface cover, the formation of water repellent soils, and sealing of the soil surface by ash. The latter process involves clogging of pores by ash as well as rainsplash induced compaction of the ash layer. However, few studies have directly addressed the hydrologic role of ash and no studies have documented ash sealing in a forest fire environment. In an attempt to determine whether ash contributes to reduced infiltration after fire we conducted a micromorphological analysis of soils collected before and after three controlled pile burns at the Lubrecht Experimental Forest in western Montana. The burns were conducted with a fuel load of 90 Mg ha-1 on sites dominated by Lodgepole pine ( Pinus contorta) with scattered Douglas fir ( Pseudotoga menziesii), sandy loam soils and a mean of 99% ground cover (litter, duff and live vegetation). Soil cores were collected before burning, immediately after burning and after the burned areas had been subjected to simulated rainfall at an intensity of 80 mm hr-1 for 1 hour. The cores were impregnated with resin from which thin sections were made and microscopically analyzed to determine the vertical distribution of organic material, ash, mineral soil and porosity. Burning consumed all of the surface litter and duff and formed a <1cm layer of black and gray ash above the mineral soil, indicating a moderate severity burn. The mean soil temperature in the upper 1 cm of the mineral soil was 70° C, and there was no detectable increase in water repellency. Rainfall simulations conducted before and after the fires indicated that burning reduced the infiltration capacity from a pre-fire mean of 87 mm hr-1 to a post-fire mean of 35 mm hr-1. Prior to burning the upper 1 cm of the soil was comprised of 41% non- ash organic material, 4% clastic material and 55% pore space. After burning the porosity in the upper 1 cm decreased to 36% and the solid

  2. Trace gases and particulate matter emissions from wildfires and agricultural burning in Northeastern Mexico during the 2000 fire season.

    PubMed

    Mendoza, Alberto; Garcia, Marisa R; Vela, Patricia; Lozano, D Fabian; Allen, David

    2005-12-01

    An inventory of air pollutants emitted from forest and agricultural fires in Northeastern Mexico for the period of January to August of 2000 is presented. The emissions estimates were calculated using an emissions factor methodology. The inventory accounts for the emission of carbon monoxide (CO), methane, nonmethane hydrocarbons, ammonia, nitrogen oxides, and particulate matter (PM). Particulate matter emissions include estimates for fine PM and coarse PM. A total of 2479 wildfires were identified in the domain for the period of interest, which represented approximately 810,000 acres burned and 621,130 short tons emitted (81% being CO). The main source of information used to locate and estimate the extent of the fires came from satellite imagery. A geographic information system was used to determine the type of vegetation burned by each fire. More than 54% of the total area burned during the period of study was land on the State of Tamaulipas. However, >58% of the estimated emissions came from the State of Coahuila. This was because of the mix of vegetation types burned in each state. With respect to the temporal distribution, 76.9% of the fires occurred during the months of April and May consuming almost 78% of the total area burned during the period of study. Analysis of wind forward trajectories of air masses passing through the burned areas and 850-mb wind reanalyses indicate possible transboundary transport of the emissions from Mexico to the United States during the occurrence of the major wildfires identified.

  3. Soil moisture variation and dynamics across a wildfire burn boundary in a loblolly pine (Pinus taeda) forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cardenas, M. Bayani; Kanarek, Michael R.

    2014-11-01

    A year after the most destructive wildfire in Texas (USA) history which occurred in and around Bastrop State Park, we established a 165 m-long study transect, bridging burned and unburned areas, to study post-wildfire soil moisture dynamics. Soil moisture content (θ) was monitored indirectly approximately monthly for half a year using a variety of methods with different measurement scales including: 2D electrical resistivity (ER) imaging and surface and vertical profiles using probes which measure soil dielectric properties. The burned section, where the majority of loblolly pine trees were killed, had higher θ and lower ER whereas the unburned end which is still populated by live pine trees had lower θ and higher ER. This pattern persisted from the ground surface and down to ∼2 m and through the study period even after a rainfall event which made the whole transect generally wetter but with the burned end showing a much stronger wetting response to the storm. The differences in θ cannot be explained by differences in soil texture with the burned end with sand soil and the unburned end with less permeable loamy sand. The differing results may be explained by loss of canopy cover and by reduced transpiration at the burned end where the dead roots may also potentially serve as macropores. Thus, after fires and until new vegetation cover has grown, the burned areas will store and transmit more water which could lead to increased groundwater recharge and promote the recovery or invasion of certain types of vegetation.

  4. Climate and wildfire area burned in western U.S. ecoprovinces, 1916-2003.

    PubMed

    Littell, Jeremy S; McKenzie, Donald; Peterson, David L; Westerling, Anthony L

    2009-06-01

    The purpose of this paper is to quantify climatic controls on the area burned by fire in different vegetation types in the western United States. We demonstrate that wildfire area burned (WFAB) in the American West was controlled by climate during the 20th century (1916-2003). Persistent ecosystem-specific correlations between climate and WFAB are grouped by vegetation type (ecoprovinces). Most mountainous ecoprovinces exhibit strong year-of-fire relationships with low precipitation, low Palmer drought severity index (PDSI), and high temperature. Grass- and shrub-dominated ecoprovinces had positive relationships with antecedent precipitation or PDSI. For 1977-2003, a few climate variables explain 33-87% (mean = 64%) of WFAB, indicating strong linkages between climate and area burned. For 1916-2003, the relationships are weaker, but climate explained 25-57% (mean = 39%) of the variability. The variance in WFAB is proportional to the mean squared for different data sets at different spatial scales. The importance of antecedent climate (summer drought in forested ecosystems and antecedent winter precipitation in shrub and grassland ecosystems) indicates that the mechanism behind the observed fire-climate relationships is climatic preconditioning of large areas of low fuel moisture via drying of existing fuels or fuel production and drying. The impacts of climate change on fire regimes will therefore vary with the relative energy or water limitations of ecosystems. Ecoprovinces proved a useful compromise between ecologically imprecise state-level and localized gridded fire data. The differences in climate-fire relationships among the ecoprovinces underscore the need to consider ecological context (vegetation, fuels, and seasonal climate) to identify specific climate drivers of WFAB. Despite the possible influence of fire suppression, exclusion, and fuel treatment, WFAB is still substantially controlled by climate. The implications for planning and management are that

  5. Effects of ignition location models on the burn patterns of simulated wildfires

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bar-Massada, A.; Syphard, A.D.; Hawbaker, T.J.; Stewart, S.I.; Radeloff, V.C.

    2011-01-01

    Fire simulation studies that use models such as FARSITE often assume that ignition locations are distributed randomly, because spatially explicit information about actual ignition locations are difficult to obtain. However, many studies show that the spatial distribution of ignition locations, whether human-caused or natural, is non-random. Thus, predictions from fire simulations based on random ignitions may be unrealistic. However, the extent to which the assumption of ignition location affects the predictions of fire simulation models has never been systematically explored. Our goal was to assess the difference in fire simulations that are based on random versus non-random ignition location patterns. We conducted four sets of 6000 FARSITE simulations for the Santa Monica Mountains in California to quantify the influence of random and non-random ignition locations and normal and extreme weather conditions on fire size distributions and spatial patterns of burn probability. Under extreme weather conditions, fires were significantly larger for non-random ignitions compared to random ignitions (mean area of 344.5 ha and 230.1 ha, respectively), but burn probability maps were highly correlated (r = 0.83). Under normal weather, random ignitions produced significantly larger fires than non-random ignitions (17.5 ha and 13.3 ha, respectively), and the spatial correlations between burn probability maps were not high (r = 0.54), though the difference in the average burn probability was small. The results of the study suggest that the location of ignitions used in fire simulation models may substantially influence the spatial predictions of fire spread patterns. However, the spatial bias introduced by using a random ignition location model may be minimized if the fire simulations are conducted under extreme weather conditions when fire spread is greatest. ?? 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

  6. Black Carbon from Biomass Burning Emissions: New Mexico Wildfires and Controlled Laboratory Burns of Fuels Found in the Southwestern US

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aiken, A. C.; Dubey, M.; Liu, S.; McMeeking, G. R.; Gorkowski, K.; Arata, C.; Mazzoleni, C.; China, S.; Kreidenweis, S. M.; DeMott, P. J.; Yokelson, R. J.; Robinson, A. L.

    2013-12-01

    Black carbon (BC) is currently considered the second most important global warming factor behind CO2 and is thought to be underestimated by a factor of two in most global models (Bond et al., 2013). Approximately half of BC comes from biomass burning (BB) sources, which are estimated to contribute up to ~0.6 W/m2 warming of the atmosphere. Organic carbon (OC) from fires condenses on and/or mixes with the BC, lowering the overall forcing from BB to 0.03 × 0.12 Wm-2. This reduction depends strongly on the composition and mixing state of OC and BC, which is dependent on fire conditions, e.g. modified combustion efficiency. Models and laboratory measurements indicate that a BC core coated with a non-absorbing layer can enhance absorption by 2, although it has yet to be observed in ambient data to this degree (Cappa et al., 2012). Direct on-line measurements of BC are made with the single particle soot photometer (SP2) from "fresh" and "aged" BB. We investigate BC in concentrated BB plumes from the two largest wildfires in New Mexico's history with different ages and compare them to BC from indoor generation from single-source fuels, e.g. ponderosa pine, juniper, sawgrass, sampled during Fire Lab At Missoula Experiments IV (FLAME-IV). FLAME-IV includes direct emissions, well-mixed samples, and aging studies. Aerosol optical properties were measured using photoacoustic spectrometry for absorption and nephelometry for scattering with the 3-wavelength and single-wavelength Photoacoustic Soot Spectrometers (PASS-3: 405 nm, 532 nm, 781 nm; PASS: 375 nm) and for the first time are compared with the new Photoacoustic Extinctiometer (PAX; 870 nm) during FLAME-IV. Las Conchas Fire (July-August, 2011) BC was sampled after only a few hours of aging and exhibits mostly core-shell structure. Whitewater Baldy Fire (May-June, 2012) BC was sampled after an aging period of 10-20 hours and includes partially coated BC in addition to thickly coated core-shell BC. Partially coated BC is

  7. Signatures of Biomass Burning Aerosols during a Smoke Plume Event from a Saltmarsh Wildfire in South Texas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Louchouarn, P.; Griffin, R. J.; Norwood, M. J.; Sterne, A. M. E.; Karakurt Cevik, B.

    2014-12-01

    The most conventional and abundant tracers of biomass combustion in aerosol particles include potassium and biomarkers derived from thermally altered cellulose/hemicellulose (anhydrosugars) and lignin (methoxyphenols). However, little is known of the role of biomass combustion as a particulate source of major plant polymers to the atmosphere. Here, concentrations of "free" (solvent-extractable) anhydrosugars and methoxyphenols are compared to the yields of polymeric lignin oxidation products (LOPs) during a smoke plume event in Houston, Texas. Downwind aerosol samples (PM2.5) were collected prior to, during, and following a two-day wildfire event that burned ~5,000 acres of a spartina saltmarsh ecosystem in the McFaddin National Wildlife Refuge, 125 km southeast of Houston. In addition, charcoals of the burned plants were collected within a week of the fire at the wildfire site. HYSPLIT modeling shows that Houston was directly downwind of this wildfire during the peak of the burn, with an approximate travel time from source to aerosol sampling site of 12-16 hrs. Concentrations of all organic markers, K+, and Ca2+ jumped by a factor of 2-13 within 1-2 days of the start of the fire and dropped to pre-fire levels three days after the peak event. Source signatures of anhydrosugars and free methoxyphenols during the peak of the plume were identical to those of grass charcoals collected from the site, confirming the potential use of charcoals as endmembers for source input reconstruction during atmospheric transport. An enrichment factor of 20 in the anhydrosugar to methoxyphenol ratio of aerosols vs. charcoals can partially be explained by differences in degradation rate constants between the two biomarker groups. Polymeric LOP comprised 73-91% of all lignin material in the aerosols, pointing to fires as major sources of primary biogenic aerosol particles and confirming an earlier study that lignin phenols in atmospheric particles occur predominantly in polymeric form.

  8. Wind erosion from a sagebrush steppe burned by wildfire: Measurements of PM10 and total horizontal sediment flux

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wagenbrenner, Natalie S.; Germino, Matthew J.; Lamb, Brian K.; Robichaud, Peter R.; Foltz, Randy B.

    2013-09-01

    Wind erosion and aeolian transport processes are under studied compared to rainfall-induced erosion and sediment transport on burned landscapes. Post-fire wind erosion studies have predominantly focused on near-surface sediment transport and associated impacts such as on-site soil loss and site fertility. Downwind impacts, including air quality degradation and deposition of dust or contaminants, are also likely post-fire effects; however, quantitative field measurements of post-fire dust emissions are needed for assessment of these downwind risks. A wind erosion monitoring system was installed immediately following a desert sagebrush and grass wildfire in southeastern Idaho, USA to measure wind erosion from the burned landscape. This paper presents measurements of horizontal sediment flux and PM10 vertical flux from the burned area. We determined threshold wind speeds and corresponding threshold friction velocities to be 6.0 and 0.20 m s-1, respectively, for the 4 months immediately following the fire and 10 and 0.55 m s-1 for the following spring months. Several major wind erosion events were measured in the months following the July 2010 Jefferson Fire. The largest wind erosion event occurred in early September 2010 and produced 1495 kg m-1 of horizontal sediment transport within the first 2 m above the soil surface, had a maximum PM10 vertical flux of 100 mg m-2 s-1, and generated a large dust plume that was visible in satellite imagery. The peak PM10 concentration measured on-site at a height of 2 m in the downwind portion of the burned area was 690 mg m-3. Our results indicate that wildfire can convert a relatively stable landscape into one that is a major dust source.

  9. Operational Experience with Long Duration Wildfire Mapping: UAS Missions Over the Western United States

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hall, Philip; Cobleigh, Brent; Buoni, Greg; Howell, Kathleen

    2008-01-01

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration, United States Forest Service, and National Interagency Fire Center have developed a partnership to develop and demonstrate technology to improve airborne wildfire imaging and data dissemination. In the summer of 2007, a multi-spectral infrared scanner was integrated into NASA's Ikhana Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) (a General Atomics Predator-B) and launched on four long duration wildfire mapping demonstration missions covering eight western states. Extensive safety analysis, contingency planning, and mission coordination were key to securing an FAA certificate of authorization (COA) to operate in the national airspace. Infrared images were autonomously geo-rectified, transmitted to the ground station by satellite communications, and networked to fire incident commanders within 15 minutes of acquisition. Close coordination with air traffic control ensured a safe operation, and allowed real-time redirection around inclement weather and other minor changes to the flight plan. All objectives of the mission demonstrations were achieved. In late October, wind-driven wildfires erupted in five southern California counties. State and national emergency operations agencies requested Ikhana to help assess and manage the wildfires. Four additional missions were launched over a 5-day period, with near realtime images delivered to multiple emergency operations centers and fire incident commands managing 10 fires.

  10. Mapping burn severity in a disease-impacted forest landscape using Landsat and MASTER imagery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Gang; Metz, Margaret R.; Rizzo, David M.; Meentemeyer, Ross K.

    2015-08-01

    Global environmental change has increased forest vulnerability to the occurrence of interacting disturbances, including wildfires and invasive diseases. Mapping post-fire burn severity in a disease-affected forest often faces challenges because burned and infested trees may exhibit a high similarity in spectral reflectance. In this study, we combined (pre- and post-fire) Landsat imagery and (post-fire) high-spectral resolution airborne MASTER data [MODIS (moderate resolution imaging spectroradiometer)/ASTER (advanced spaceborne thermal emission and reflection radiometer)] to map burn severity in a California coastal forest environment, where a non-native forest disease sudden oak death (SOD) was causing substantial tree mortality. Results showed that the use of Landsat plus MASTER bundle performed better than using the individual sensors in most of the evaluated forest strata from ground to canopy layers (i.e., substrate, shrubs, intermediate-sized trees, dominant trees and average), with the best model performance achieved at the dominant tree layer. The mid to thermal infrared spectral bands (3.0-12.5 μm) from MASTER were found to augment Landsat's visible to shortwave infrared bands in burn severity assessment. We also found that infested and uninfested forests similarly experienced moderate to high degrees of burns where CBI (composite burn index) values were higher than 1. However, differences occurred in the regions with low burn severity (CBI values lower than 1), where uninfested stands revealed a much lower burn effect than that in infested stands, possibly due to their higher resilience to small fire disturbances as a result of higher leaf water content.

  11. Mapping burn severity, pine beetle infestation, and their interaction at the High Park Fire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stone, Brandon

    North America's western forests are experiencing wildfire and mountain pine beetle (MPB) disturbances that are unprecedented in the historic record, but it remains unclear whether and how MPB infestation influences post-infestation fire behavior. The 2012 High Park Fire burned in an area that's estimated to have begun a MPB outbreak cycle within five years before the wildfire, resulting in a landscape in which disturbance interactions can be studied. A first step in studying these interactions is mapping regions of beetle infestation and post-fire disturbance. We implemented an approach for mapping beetle infestation and burn severity using as source data three 5 m resolution RapidEye satellite images (two pre-fire, one post-fire). A two-tiered methodology was developed to overcome the spatial limitations of many classification approaches through explicit analyses at both pixel and plot level. Major land cover classes were photo-interpreted at the plot-level and their spectral signature used to classify 5 m images. A new image was generated at 25 m resolution by tabulating the fraction of coincident 5 m pixels in each cover class. The original photo interpretation was then used to train a second classification using as its source image the new 25 m image. Maps were validated using k-fold analysis of the original photo interpretation, field data collected immediately post-fire, and publicly available classifications. To investigate the influence of pre-fire beetle infestation on burn severity within the High Park Fire, we fit a log-linear model of conditional independence to our thematic maps after controlling for forest cover class and slope aspect. Our analysis revealed a high co-occurrence of severe burning and beetle infestation within high elevation lodgepole pine stands, but did not find statistically significant evidence that infected stands were more likely to burn severely than similar uninfected stands. Through an inspection of the year-to-year changes in

  12. Mapping the Distribution of Wildfire Fuels Using AVIRIS in the Santa Monica Mountains

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roberts, Dar; Gardner, M.; Regelbrugge, J.; Pedreros, D.; Ustin, S.

    1998-01-01

    Catastrophic wildfires, such as the 1990 Painted Cave Fire in Santa Barbara or Oakland fire of 1991, attest to the destructive potential of fire in the wildland/urban interface. For example, during the Painted Cave Fire, 673 structures were consumed over a period of only six hours at an estimated cost of 250 million dollars (Gomes et al., 1993). One of the primary sources of fuels is chaparral, which consists of plant species that are adapted to frequent fires and may actually promote its ignition and spread of through volatile organic compounds in foliage. As one of the most widely distributed plant communities in Southern California, and one of the most common vegetation types along the wildland urban interface, chaparral represents one of the greatest sources of wildfire hazard in the region. An ongoing NASA funded research project was initiated in 1994 to study the potential of AVIRIS for mapping wildfire fuel properties in Southern California chaparral. The project was initiated in the Santa Monica Mountains, an east-west trending range in western Los Angeles County that has experienced extremely high fire frequencies over the past 70 years. The Santa Monica Mountains were selected because they exemplify many of the problems facing the southwest, forming a complex mosaic of land ownership intermixed with a diversity of chaparral age classes and fuel loads. Furthermore, the area has a wide diversity of chaparral community types and a rich background in supporting geographic information including fire history, soils and topography. Recent fires in the Santa Monica Mountains, including several in 1993 and the Calabasas fire of 1996 attest to the active fire regime present in the area. The long term objectives of this project are to improve existing maps of wildland fuel properties in the area, link AVIRIS derived products to fuel models under development for the region, then predict fire hazard through models that simulate fire spread. In this paper, we describe

  13. Charring temperatures are driven by the fuel types burned in a peatland wildfire

    PubMed Central

    Hudspith, Victoria A.; Belcher, Claire M.; Yearsley, Jonathan M.

    2014-01-01

    Peatlands represent a globally important carbon store; however, the human exploitation of this ecosystem is increasing both the frequency and severity of fires on drained peatlands. Yet, the interactions between the hydrological conditions (ecotopes), the fuel types being burned, the burn severity, and the charring temperatures (pyrolysis intensity) remain poorly understood. Here we present a post-burn assessment of a fire on a lowland raised bog in Co. Offaly, Ireland (All Saints Bog). Three burn severities were identified in the field (light, moderate, and deeply burned), and surface charcoals were taken from 17 sites across all burn severities. Charcoals were classified into two fuel type categories (either ground or aboveground fuel) and the reflectance of each charcoal particle was measured under oil using reflectance microscopy. Charcoal reflectance shows a positive relationship with charring temperature and as such can be used as a temperature proxy to reconstruct minimum charring temperatures after a fire event. Resulting median reflectance values for ground fuels are 1.09 ± 0.32%Romedian, corresponding to estimated minimum charring temperatures of 447°C ± 49°C. In contrast, the median charring temperatures of aboveground fuels were found to be considerably higher, 646°C ± 73°C (3.58 ± 0.77%Romedian). A mixed-effects modeling approach was used to demonstrate that the interaction effects of burn severity, as well as ecotope classes, on the charcoal reflectance is small compared to the main effect of fuel type. Our findings reveal that the different fuel types on raised bogs are capable of charring at different temperatures within the same fire, and that the pyrolysis intensity of the fire on All Saints Bog was primarily driven by the fuel types burning, with only a weak association to the burn severity or ecotope classes. PMID:25566288

  14. Mapping and monitoring cropland burning in European Russia: a multi-sensor approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hall, J.; Loboda, T. V.; Mccarty, G.; McConnell, L.; Woldemariam, T.

    2013-12-01

    Short lived aerosols and pollutants transported from high northern latitudes have amplified the short term warming in the Arctic region. Specifically, black carbon (BC) is recognized as the second most important human emission in regards to climate forcing, behind carbon dioxide with a total climate forcing of +1.1Wm-2. Early studies have suggested that cropland burning may be a high contributor to the BC emissions which are directly deposited above the Arctic Circle. However, accurate monitoring of cropland burning from existing active fire and burned area products is limited. Most existing algorithms are focused on mapping hotter and larger wildfire events. The timing of cropland burning differs from wildfire events and their transient nature adds a further challenge to the product development. In addition, the analysis of multi-year cloud cover over Russian croplands, using the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) daily surface reflectance data showed that on average early afternoon observations from MODIS/ Aqua provided 68 clear views per growing period (defined 1st March 2003 - 30th November 2012) with a range from 30 to 101 clear views; whereas MODIS/Terra provided 75 clear views per growing period (defined 1st March 2001 - 30th November 2012) with a range from 37 to 113 clear views. Here we present a new approach to burned area mapping in croplands from satellite imagery. Our algorithm is designed to detect burned area only within croplands and does not have the requirements to perform well outside those. The algorithm focuses on tracking the natural intra-annual development curve specific for crops rather than natural vegetation and works by identifying the subtle spectral nuances between varieties of cropland field categories. Using a combination of the high visual accuracy from very high resolution (VHR, defined as spatial resolution < 5m) imagery and the temporal trend of MODIS data, we are able to differentiate between burned and plowed

  15. Prescribed-burning vs. wildfire: management implications for annual carbon emissions along a latitudinal gradient of Calluna vulgaris-dominated vegetation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Santana, V. M.; Alday, J. G.; Lee, H.; Allen, K. A.; Marrs, R. H.

    2015-11-01

    A~present challenge in fire ecology is to optimize management techniques so that ecological services are maximized and C emissions minimized. Here, we model the effects of different prescribed-burning rotation intervals and wildfires on carbon emissions (present and future) in British moorlands. Biomass-accumulation curves from four Calluna-dominated ecosystems along a north-south, climatic gradient in Great Britain were calculated and used within a matrix-model based on Markov Chains to calculate above-ground biomass-loads, and annual C losses under different prescribed-burning rotation intervals. Additionally, we assessed the interaction of these parameters with an increasing wildfire return interval. We observed that litter accumulation patterns varied along the latitudinal gradient, with differences between northern (colder and wetter) and southern sites (hotter and drier). The accumulation patterns of the living vegetation dominated by Calluna were determined by site-specific conditions. The optimal prescribed-burning rotation interval for minimizing annual carbon losses also differed between sites: the rotation interval for northern sites was between 30 and 50 years, whereas for southern sites a hump-backed relationship was found with the optimal interval either between 8 to 10 years or between 30 to 50 years. Increasing wildfire frequency interacted with prescribed-burning rotation intervals by both increasing C emissions and modifying the optimum prescribed-burning interval for C minimum emission. This highlights the importance of studying site-specific biomass accumulation patterns with respect to environmental conditions for identifying suitable fire-rotation intervals to minimize C losses.

  16. National scale operational mapping of burnt areas as a tool for the better understanding of contemporary wildfire patterns and regimes.

    PubMed

    Kontoes, Charalampos; Keramitsoglou, Iphigenia; Papoutsis, Ioannis; Sifakis, Nicolas I; Xofis, Panteleimon

    2013-08-21

    This paper presents the results of an operational nationwide burnt area mapping service realized over Greece for the years 2007-2011, through the implementation of the so-called BSM_NOA dedicated method developed at the National Observatory of Athens for post-fire recovery management. The method exploits multispectral satellite imagery, such as Landsat-TM, SPOT, FORMOSAT-2, WorldView and IKONOS. The analysis of fire size distribution reveals that a high number of fire events evolve to large and extremely large wildfires under favorable wildfire conditions, confirming the reported trend of an increasing fire-severity in recent years. Furthermore, under such conditions wildfires affect to a higher degree areas at high altitudes, threatening the existence of ecologically significant ecosystems. Finally, recent socioeconomic changes and land abandonment has resulted in the encroachment of former agricultural areas of limited productivity by shrubs and trees, resulting both in increased fuel availability and continuity, and subsequently increased burnability.

  17. National Scale Operational Mapping of Burnt Areas as a Tool for the Better Understanding of Contemporary Wildfire Patterns and Regimes

    PubMed Central

    Kontoes, Charalampos; Keramitsoglou, Iphigenia; Papoutsis, Ioannis; Sifakis, Nicolas I.; Xofis, Panteleimon

    2013-01-01

    This paper presents the results of an operational nationwide burnt area mapping service realized over Greece for the years 2007–2011, through the implementation of the so-called BSM_NOA dedicated method developed at the National Observatory of Athens for post-fire recovery management. The method exploits multispectral satellite imagery, such as Landsat-TM, SPOT, FORMOSAT-2, WorldView and IKONOS. The analysis of fire size distribution reveals that a high number of fire events evolve to large and extremely large wildfires under favorable wildfire conditions, confirming the reported trend of an increasing fire-severity in recent years. Furthermore, under such conditions wildfires affect to a higher degree areas at high altitudes, threatening the existence of ecologically significant ecosystems. Finally, recent socioeconomic changes and land abandonment has resulted in the encroachment of former agricultural areas of limited productivity by shrubs and trees, resulting both in increased fuel availability and continuity, and subsequently increased burnability. PMID:23966201

  18. Lidar observations and characterization of biomass burning aerosols over Sofia: Long-range transport of forest wildfire smoke

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peshev, Zahary Y.; Dreischuh, Tanja N.; Toncheva, Eleonora N.; Stoyanov, Dimitar V.

    2013-03-01

    Results of remote measurements and characterization of biomass burning aerosols observed in the low troposphere over Sofia, Bulgaria, are presented and discussed. Measurements are accomplished by using two-wavelength elastic-scatter lidar, operating at 1064 nm and 532 nm. The aerosols are identified as to be consisted mainly of aged smoke of wildfires raging in the USA in the last third of July 2012. The long-range transport of the smoke aerosols, taking place from 24 July to 6 August 2012, is determined to be driven by the Northern hemisphere Polar jet stream. Spatial distribution of the observed aerosols is displayed by retrieving averaged vertical profiles of the aerosol backscatter coefficients. The temporal evolution of the aerosol layers during the period of measurement is shown by height-time coordinate colormaps of range-corrected lidar data. In order to characterize qualitatively the size range of the aerosol particles, the vertical profile of the backscatter-related Ångström exponent (BAE) is also retrieved. As an accent of the work, distributions of BAE corresponding to distinguished aerosol layers, as well as the overall one, are obtained and analyzed, representing qualitative counterparts of the real particle size distributions. In the case of the fire smoke layer, BAE values vary in the range 1.0-1.3, indicating processes of considerable aggregation of the finest particle size mods during the aging period. The reliability of the results and conclusions concerning the fire smoke BAE distributions and their evolution are indirectly validated by the obtained typical distribution ranges of the observed urban- and water aerosols.

  19. Network analysis of wildfire transmission and implications for risk governance

    PubMed Central

    Ager, Alan A.; Evers, Cody R.; Day, Michelle A.; Preisler, Haiganoush K.; Barros, Ana M. G.; Nielsen-Pincus, Max

    2017-01-01

    We characterized wildfire transmission and exposure within a matrix of large land tenures (federal, state, and private) surrounding 56 communities within a 3.3 million ha fire prone region of central Oregon US. Wildfire simulation and network analysis were used to quantify the exchange of fire among land tenures and communities and analyze the relative contributions of human versus natural ignitions to wildfire exposure. Among the land tenures examined, the area burned by incoming fires averaged 57% of the total burned area. Community exposure from incoming fires ignited on surrounding land tenures accounted for 67% of the total area burned. The number of land tenures contributing wildfire to individual communities and surrounding wildland urban interface (WUI) varied from 3 to 20. Community firesheds, i.e. the area where ignitions can spawn fires that can burn into the WUI, covered 40% of the landscape, and were 5.5 times larger than the combined area of the community core and WUI. For the major land tenures within the study area, the amount of incoming versus outgoing fire was relatively constant, with some exceptions. The study provides a multi-scale characterization of wildfire networks within a large, mixed tenure and fire prone landscape, and illustrates the connectivity of risk between communities and the surrounding wildlands. We use the findings to discuss how scale mismatches in local wildfire governance result from disconnected planning systems and disparate fire management objectives among the large landowners (federal, state, private) and local communities. Local and regional risk planning processes can adopt our concepts and methods to better define and map the scale of wildfire risk from large fire events and incorporate wildfire network and connectivity concepts into risk assessments. PMID:28257416

  20. Health impacts of wildfires.

    PubMed

    Finlay, Sarah Elise; Moffat, Andrew; Gazzard, Rob; Baker, David; Murray, Virginia

    2012-11-02

    Introduction Wildfires are common globally. Although there has been considerable work done on the health effects of wildfires in countries such as the USA where they occur frequently there has been relatively little work to investigate health effects in the United Kingdom. Climate change may increase the risk of increasing wildfire frequency, therefore there is an urgent need to further understand the health effects and public awareness of wildfires. This study was designed to review current evidence about the health effects of wildfires from the UK standpoint. Methods A comprehensive literature review of international evidence regarding wildfire related health effects was conducted in January 2012. Further information was gathered from authors' focus groups. Results A review of the published evidence shows that human health can be severely affected by wildfires. Certain populations are particularly vulnerable. Wood smoke has high levels of particulate matter and toxins. Respiratory morbidity predominates, but cardiovascular, ophthalmic and psychiatric problems can also result. In addition severe burns resulting from direct contact with the fire require care in special units and carry a risk of multi - organ complications. The wider health implications from spreading air, water and land pollution are of concern. Access to affected areas and communication with populations living within them is crucial in mitigating risk. Conclusion This study has identified factors that may reduce public health risk from wildfires. However more research is needed to evaluate longer term health effects from wildfires. An understanding of such factors is vital to ensure preparedness within health care services for such events.

  1. Analysis and mapping of post-fire hydrologic hazards for the 2002 Hayman, Coal Seam, and Missionary Ridge wildfires, Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Elliott, J.G.; Smith, M.E.; Friedel, M.J.; Stevens, M.R.; Bossong, C.R.; Litke, D.W.; Parker, R.S.; Costello, C.; Wagner, J.; Char, S.J.; Bauer, M.A.; Wilds, S.R.

    2005-01-01

    Wildfires caused extreme changes in the hydrologic, hydraulic, and geomorphologic characteristics of many Colorado drainage basins in the summer of 2002. Detailed assessments were made of the short-term effects of three wildfires on burned and adjacent unburned parts of drainage basins. These were the Hayman, Coal Seam, and Missionary Ridge wildfires. Longer term runoff characteristics that reflect post-fire drainage basin recovery expected to develop over a period of several years also were analyzed for two affected stream reaches: the South Platte River between Deckers and Trumbull, and Mitchell Creek in Glenwood Springs. The 10-, 50-, 100-, and 500-year flood-plain boundaries and water-surface profiles were computed in a detailed hydraulic study of the Deckers-to-Trumbull reach. The Hayman wildfire burned approximately 138,000 acres (216 square miles) in granitic terrain near Denver, and the predominant potential hazard in this area is flooding by sediment-laden water along the large tributaries to and the main stem of the South Platte River. The Coal Seam wildfire burned approximately 12,200 acres (19.1 square miles) near Glenwood Springs, and the Missionary Ridge wildfire burned approximately 70,500 acres (110 square miles) near Durango, both in areas underlain by marine shales where the predominant potential hazard is debris-flow inundation of low-lying areas. Hydrographs and peak discharges for pre-burn and post-burn scenarios were computed for each drainage basin and tributary subbasin by using rainfall-runoff models because streamflow data for most tributary subbasins were not available. An objective rainfall-runoff model calibration method based on nonlinear regression and referred to as the ?objective calibration method? was developed and applied to rainfall-runoff models for three burned areas. The HEC-1 rainfall-runoff model was used to simulate the pre-burn rainfall-runoff processes in response to the 100-year storm, and HEC-HMS was used for runoff

  2. An evaluation of image based techniques for wildfire detection and fuel mapping

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gabbert, Dustin W.

    Few events can cause the catastrophic impact to ecology, infrastructure, and human safety of a wildland fire along the wildland urban interface. The suppression of natural wildland fires over the past decade has caused a buildup of dry, dead surface fuels: a condition that, coupled with the right weather conditions, can cause large destructive wildfires that are capable of threatening both ancient tree stands and manmade infrastructure. Firefighters use fire danger models to determine staffing needs on high fire risk days; however models are only as effective as the spatial and temporal density of their observations. OKFIRE, an Oklahoma initiative created by a partnership between Oklahoma State University and the University of Oklahoma, has proven that fire danger assessments close to the fire - both geographically and temporally - can give firefighters a significant increase in their situational awareness while fighting a wildland fire. This paper investigates several possible solutions for a small Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) which could gather information useful for detecting ground fires and constructing fire danger maps. Multiple fire detection and fuel mapping programs utilize satellites, manned aircraft, and large UAS equipped with hyperspectral sensors to gather useful information. Their success provides convincing proof of the utility that could be gained from low-altitude UAS gathering information at the exact time and place firefighters and land managers are interested in. Close proximity, both geographically and operationally, to the end can reduce latency times below what could ever be possible with satellite observation. This paper expands on recent advances in computer vision, photogrammetry, and infrared and color imagery to develop a framework for a next-generation UAS which can assess fire danger and aid firefighters in real time as they observe, contain, or extinguish wildland fires. It also investigates the impact information gained by this

  3. An Evaluation of Image Based Techniques for Early Wildfire Detection and Fuel Mapping

    SciTech Connect

    Gabbert, Dustin W.

    2015-05-01

    Few events can cause the catastrophic impact to ecology, infrastructure, and human safety of a wildland fire along the wildland urban interface. The suppression of natural wildland fires over the past decade has caused a buildup of dry, dead surface fuels: a condition that, coupled with the right weather conditions, can cause large destructive wildfires that are capable of threatening both ancient tree stands and manmade infrastructure. Firefighters use fire danger models to determine staffing needs on high fire risk days; however models are only as effective as the spatial and temporal density of their observations. OKFIRE, an Oklahoma initiative created by a partnership between Oklahoma State University and the University of Oklahoma, has proven that fire danger assessments close to the fire – both geographically and temporally – can give firefighters a significant increase in their situational awareness while fighting a wildland fire. This paper investigates several possible solutions for a small Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) which could gather information useful for detecting ground fires and constructing fire danger maps. Multiple fire detection and fuel mapping programs utilize satellites, manned aircraft, and large UAS equipped with hyperspectral sensors to gather useful information. Their success provides convincing proof of the utility that could be gained from low-altitude UAS gathering information at the exact time and place firefighters and land managers are interested in. Close proximity, both geographically and operationally, to the end can reduce latency times below what could ever be possible with satellite observation. This paper expands on recent advances in computer vision, photogrammetry, and infrared and color imagery to develop a framework for a next-generation UAS which can assess fire danger and aid firefighters in real time as they observe, contain, or extinguish wildland fires. It also investigates the impact information gained by this

  4. Compounding nonlinearities in the climate and wildfire system contribute to high uncertainty in estimates of future burned area in the western United State

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, P.

    2015-12-01

    Ecological studies are increasingly recognizing the importance of atmospheric vapor-pressure deficit (VPD) as a driver of forest drought stress and disturbance processes such as wildfire. Because of the nonlinear Clausius-Clapeyron relationship between temperature and saturation vapor pressure, small variations in temperature can have large impacts on VPD, and therefore drought, particularly in warm, dry areas and particularly during the warm season. It is also clear that VPD and drought affect forest fire nonlinearly, as incremental drying leads to increasingly large burned areas. Forest fire is also affected by fuel amount and connectivity, which are promoted by vegetation growth in previous years, which is in turn promoted by lack of drought, highlighting the importance of nuances in the sequencing of natural interannual climate variations in modulating the impacts of drought on wildfire. The many factors affecting forest fire, and the nonlinearities embedded within the climate and wildfire systems, cause interannual variability in forest-fire area and frequency to be wildly variable and strongly affected by internal climate variability. In addition, warming over the past century has produced a background increase in forest fire frequency and area in many regions. In this talk I focus on the western United States and will explore whether the relationships between internal climate variability on forest fire area have been amplified by the effects of warming as a result of the compounding nonlinearities described above. I will then explore what this means for future burned area in the western United States and make the case that uncertainties in the future global greenhouse gas emissions trajectory, model projections of mean temperatures, model projections of precipitation, and model projections of natural climate variability translate to very large uncertainties in the effects of future climate variability on forest fire area in the United States and globally.

  5. Investigating the Impacts of Wildfires on Air Quality in the Western US

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yates, E. L.; Iraci, L. T.; Singh, H. B.; Ambrosia, V. G.; Clements, C. B.; Gore, W.; Lareau, N.; Quayle, B.; Ryoo, J. M.; Schroeder, W.; Tanaka, T.

    2015-12-01

    Wildfire emissions are an important source of a wide range of trace gases and particles that can impact local, regional and global air quality, climate forcing, biogeochemical cycles and human health. In the western US, wildfires dominate over prescribed fires. However, limited sampling of wildfire emissions means western US emission estimates rely largely on data from prescribed fires, which may not be a suitable proxy for wildfire emissions. Further, interactions of wildfire emissions with urban pollution, commonly the case with California wildfires, are complex and poorly understood. The Alpha Jet Atmospheric eXperiment (AJAX) sampled a variety of Californian wildfire plumes during 2013 and 2014. In addition to wildfire plumes, flights sample upwind, background conditions allowing for an assessment of enhancement ratios of trace gas species (carbon dioxide, methane and ozone). This paper presents airborne measurements of multiple trace constituents downwind of a variety of Californian wildfires, with a focus on the exceptionally large Yosemite Rim wildfire during summer 2013. During its intense burning phases, the Rim wildfire was sampled by AJAX on 29 August as well as by the NASA DC-8, as part of its SEAC4RS mission, on 26 and 27 August. AJAX revisited the wildfire on 10 September when it had reached its smoldering phase. The more extensive payload of the DC-8 helped to bridge key measurements that were not available as part of the AJAX payload (e. g. carbon monoxide). The emission ratios (ER), emission factors (EF) and combustion efficiency are compared with previous wildfire studies. Integration of AJAX data with other available datasets, such as SEAC4RS, Lidar data from the California State University Mobile Atmospheric Profiling System (CSU-MAPS), MODIS/VIIRS Fire Radiative Power (FRP) and surface ozone and meteorology measurements is explored to assess the impacts of wildfires on downwind air quality including the densely populated California central

  6. Testing the ``Wildfire Hypothesis:'' Terrestrial Organic Carbon Burning as the Cause of the Paleocene-Eocene Boundary Carbon Isotope Excursion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, E. A.; Kurtz, A. C.

    2005-12-01

    The 3‰ negative carbon isotope excursion (CIE) at the Paleocene-Eocene boundary has generally been attributed to dissociation of seafloor methane hydrates. We are testing the alternative hypothesis that the carbon cycle perturbation resulted from wildfires affecting the extensive peatlands and coal swamps formed in the Paleocene. Accounting for the CIE with terrestrial organic carbon rather than methane requires a significantly larger net release of fossil carbon to the ocean-atmosphere, which may be more consistent with the extreme global warming and ocean acidification characteristic of the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM). While other researchers have noted evidence of fires at the Paleocene-Eocene boundary in individual locations, the research presented here is designed to test the "wildfire hypothesis" for the Paleocene-Eocene boundary by examining marine sediments for evidence of a global increase in wildfire activity. Such fires would produce massive amounts of soot, widely distributed by wind and well preserved in marine sediments as refractory black carbon. We expect that global wildfires occurring at the Paleocene-Eocene boundary would produce a peak in black carbon abundance at the PETM horizon. We are using the method of Gelinas et al. (2001) to produce high-resolution concentration profiles of black carbon across the Paleocene-Eocene boundary using seafloor sediments from ODP cores, beginning with the Bass River core from ODP leg 174AX and site 1209 from ODP leg 198. This method involves the chemical and thermal extraction of non-refractory carbon followed by combustion of the residual black carbon and measurement as CO2. Measurement of the δ 13C of the black carbon will put additional constraints on the source of the organic material combusted, and will allow us to determine if this organic material was formed prior to or during the CIE.

  7. Regional influence of wildfires on aerosol chemistry in the western US and insights into atmospheric aging of biomass burning organic aerosol

    DOE PAGES

    Zhou, Shan; Collier, Sonya; Jaffe, Daniel A.; ...

    2017-02-16

    Biomass burning (BB) is one of the most important contributors to atmospheric aerosols on a global scale, and wildfires are a large source of emissions that impact regional air quality and global climate. As part of the Biomass Burning Observation Project (BBOP) field campaign in summer 2013, we deployed a high-resolution time-of-flight aerosol mass spectrometer (HR-AMS) coupled with a thermodenuder at the Mt. Bachelor Observatory (MBO, ∼  2.8 km above sea level) to characterize the impact of wildfire emissions on aerosol loading and properties in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. MBO represents a remote background site in the western US,more » and it is frequently influenced by transported wildfire plumes during summer. Very clean conditions were observed at this site during periods without BB influence where the 5 min average (±1σ) concentration of non-refractory submicron aerosols (NR-PM1) was 3.7 ± 4.2 µg m−3. Aerosol concentration increased substantially (reaching up to 210 µg m−3 of NR-PM1) for periods impacted by transported BB plumes, and aerosol composition was overwhelmingly organic. Based on positive matrix factorization (PMF) of the HR-AMS data, three types of BB organic aerosol (BBOA) were identified, including a fresh, semivolatile BBOA-1 (O ∕ C  =  0.35; 20 % of OA mass) that correlated well with ammonium nitrate; an intermediately oxidized BBOA-2 (O ∕ C  =  0.60; 17 % of OA mass); and a highly oxidized BBOA-3 (O ∕ C  =  1.06; 31 % of OA mass) that showed very low volatility with only  ∼  40 % mass loss at 200 °C. The remaining 32 % of the OA mass was attributed to a boundary layer (BL) oxygenated OA (BL-OOA; O ∕ C  =  0.69) representing OA influenced by BL dynamics and a low-volatility oxygenated OA (LV-OOA; O ∕ C  =  1.09) representing regional aerosols in the free troposphere. The mass spectrum of BBOA-3

  8. Regional influence of wildfires on aerosol chemistry in the western US and insights into atmospheric aging of biomass burning organic aerosol

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Shan; Collier, Sonya; Jaffe, Daniel A.; Briggs, Nicole L.; Hee, Jonathan; Sedlacek, Arthur J., III; Kleinman, Lawrence; Onasch, Timothy B.; Zhang, Qi

    2017-02-01

    Biomass burning (BB) is one of the most important contributors to atmospheric aerosols on a global scale, and wildfires are a large source of emissions that impact regional air quality and global climate. As part of the Biomass Burning Observation Project (BBOP) field campaign in summer 2013, we deployed a high-resolution time-of-flight aerosol mass spectrometer (HR-AMS) coupled with a thermodenuder at the Mt. Bachelor Observatory (MBO, ˜ 2.8 km above sea level) to characterize the impact of wildfire emissions on aerosol loading and properties in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. MBO represents a remote background site in the western US, and it is frequently influenced by transported wildfire plumes during summer. Very clean conditions were observed at this site during periods without BB influence where the 5 min average (±1σ) concentration of non-refractory submicron aerosols (NR-PM1) was 3.7 ± 4.2 µg m-3. Aerosol concentration increased substantially (reaching up to 210 µg m-3 of NR-PM1) for periods impacted by transported BB plumes, and aerosol composition was overwhelmingly organic. Based on positive matrix factorization (PMF) of the HR-AMS data, three types of BB organic aerosol (BBOA) were identified, including a fresh, semivolatile BBOA-1 (O / C = 0.35; 20 % of OA mass) that correlated well with ammonium nitrate; an intermediately oxidized BBOA-2 (O / C = 0.60; 17 % of OA mass); and a highly oxidized BBOA-3 (O / C = 1.06; 31 % of OA mass) that showed very low volatility with only ˜ 40 % mass loss at 200 °C. The remaining 32 % of the OA mass was attributed to a boundary layer (BL) oxygenated OA (BL-OOA; O / C = 0.69) representing OA influenced by BL dynamics and a low-volatility oxygenated OA (LV-OOA; O / C = 1.09) representing regional aerosols in the free troposphere. The mass spectrum of BBOA-3 resembled that of LV-OOA and had negligible contributions from the HR-AMS BB tracer ions - C2H4O2+ (m/z = 60.021) and C3H5O2+ (m/z = 73

  9. Health Impacts of Wildfires

    PubMed Central

    Finlay, Sarah Elise; Moffat, Andrew; Gazzard, Rob; Baker, David; Murray, Virginia

    2012-01-01

    Introduction Wildfires are common globally. Although there has been considerable work done on the health effects of wildfires in countries such as the USA where they occur frequently there has been relatively little work to investigate health effects in the United Kingdom. Climate change may increase the risk of increasing wildfire frequency, therefore there is an urgent need to further understand the health effects and public awareness of wildfires. This study was designed to review current evidence about the health effects of wildfires from the UK standpoint. Methods A comprehensive literature review of international evidence regarding wildfire related health effects was conducted in January 2012. Further information was gathered from authors’ focus groups. Results A review of the published evidence shows that human health can be severely affected by wildfires. Certain populations are particularly vulnerable. Wood smoke has high levels of particulate matter and toxins. Respiratory morbidity predominates, but cardiovascular, ophthalmic and psychiatric problems can also result. In addition severe burns resulting from direct contact with the fire require care in special units and carry a risk of multi – organ complications. The wider health implications from spreading air, water and land pollution are of concern. Access to affected areas and communication with populations living within them is crucial in mitigating risk. Conclusion This study has identified factors that may reduce public health risk from wildfires. However more research is needed to evaluate longer term health effects from wildfires. An understanding of such factors is vital to ensure preparedness within health care services for such events. PMID:23145351

  10. EVOLUTIONARY COMPUTATION AND POST-WILDFIRE LAND-COVER MAPPING WITH MULTISPECTRAL IMAGERY.

    SciTech Connect

    Brumby, Steven P.; Koch, S. W.; Hansen, L. A.

    2001-01-01

    The Cerro Grande Los Alamos wildfire devastated approximately 43,000 acres (17,500 ha) of forested land, and destroyed over 200 structures in the town of Los Alamos. The need to monitor the continuing impact of the fire on the local environment has led to the application of a number of advanced remote sensing technologies. During and after the fire, remote-sensing data was acquired fiorn a variety of aircraft- and satellite-based sensors, including Landsat 7 Enhanced Thematic Mapper (ETM+). We now report on the application of a machine learning technique io the automated classification of land cover using multispectral imagery. We apply a hybrid gertelic programminghupervised classification technique to evolve automatic feature extraction algorithms. We use a software package we have developed at Los Alamos National Laboratory, called GENIE, to carry out this evolution. We use multispectral imagery fiom the Landsat 7 ETM+ instrument fiom before and after the wildfire. Using an existing land cover classification based on a Landsat 5 TM scene for our training data, we evolve algorithms that distinguish a range of land cover categories, along with clouds and cloud shadows. The details of our evolved classification are compared to the manually produced land-cover classification. Keywords: Feature Extraction, Genetic programming, Supervised classification, Multi-spectral imagery, Land cover, Wildfire.

  11. Wildfire Decision Making Under Uncertainty

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thompson, M.

    2013-12-01

    Decisions relating to wildfire management are subject to multiple sources of uncertainty, and are made by a broad range of individuals, across a multitude of environmental and socioeconomic contexts. In this presentation I will review progress towards identification and characterization of uncertainties and how this information can support wildfire decision-making. First, I will review a typology of uncertainties common to wildfire management, highlighting some of the more salient sources of uncertainty and how they present challenges to assessing wildfire risk. This discussion will cover the expanding role of burn probability modeling, approaches for characterizing fire effects, and the role of multi-criteria decision analysis, and will provide illustrative examples of integrated wildfire risk assessment across a variety of planning scales. Second, I will describe a related uncertainty typology that focuses on the human dimensions of wildfire management, specifically addressing how social, psychological, and institutional factors may impair cost-effective risk mitigation. This discussion will encompass decision processes before, during, and after fire events, with a specific focus on active management of complex wildfire incidents. An improved ability to characterize uncertainties faced in wildfire management could lead to improved delivery of decision support, targeted communication strategies, and ultimately to improved wildfire management outcomes.

  12. Desertification and other ecological impacts produced by the historic Rodeo-Chediski Wildfire of 2000, Arizona, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neary, D.; Ffolliott, P.; Stropki, C.

    2009-04-01

    The Rodeo-Chediski Wildfire - the largest in Arizona's history - damaged or destroyed ecosystem resources and disrupted ecosystem functioning in a largely mosaic pattern throughout the ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) forests exposed to the burn. Impacts of this wildfire on tree overstories were studied on two watersheds in the area burned; one watershed burned by a high severity (stand-replacing) fire, while the other watershed burned by a low severity (stand-modifying) fire. The Rodeo-Chediski wildfire damaged or destroyed ecosystem resources and disrupted the ecological functioning on much of the 189,015 ha impacted by the burning. Intermingling chaparral shrub communities and pinyon-juniper woodlands at lower elevations and ponderosa pine forests at high elevations were located within the burned area. The wildfire was caused by two human ignitions that merged into one inferno. The Rodeo Fire was started by an arsonist on June 18, 2002, while the Chediski Fire was ignited as a signal fire by a stranded motorist on June 20th. The two fires merged on June 26, 2002, to become the Rodeo-Chediski Wildfire. The combined wildfires were contained on July 7th at a suppression (firefighting) cost of about €37.9 million (USA 50 million). However, the estimated costs associated with property losses; losses of ecosystem, anthropological, and cultural resources; and post-fire rehabilitation efforts increased the costs of the wildfire to over €114 million (USA 150 million). About one-half of the total area that was burned by the Rodeo-Chediski Wildfire experienced a high-severity fire, other areas burned at a low- to medium-severity fire, and still other areas were largely unburned according to a Burned Area Emergency Rehabilitation (BAER) report and fire severity map prepared shortly after containment of the wildfire. A mosaic of areas burned at varying fire severities within intermingling unburned areas resulted. Post-fire rehabilitation efforts, including establishment

  13. Physicochemical characterization of aged biomass burning aerosol after long-range transport to Greece from large scale wildfires in Russia and surrounding regions, Summer 2010

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Diapouli, E.; Popovicheva, O.; Kistler, M.; Vratolis, S.; Persiantseva, N.; Timofeev, M.; Kasper-Giebl, A.; Eleftheriadis, K.

    2014-10-01

    Smoke aerosol emitted by large scale wildfires in the European part of Russia and Ukraine, was transported to Athens, Greece during August 2010 and detected at an urban background site. Measurements were conducted for physico-chemical characterization of the aged aerosol and included on-line monitoring of PM10 and carbonaceous particles mass concentrations, as well as number size distributions and aerosol optical properties. In addition TSP filter samples were analyzed for major inorganic ions, while morphology and composition of particles was studied by individual particle analysis. Results supported the long-range transport of smoke plumes from Ukraine and Russia burning areas indicated by back trajectory analysis. An increase of 50% and 40% on average in organic (OC) and elemental carbon (EC) concentrations respectively, and more than 95% in carbonate carbon (CC) levels was observed for the biomass burning (BB) transport period of August with respect to the previous month of July. Mean 24-h OC/EC ratio was found in the range 3.2-8.5. Single scattering albedo (SSA) was also increased, indicating abundance of light scattering constituents and/or shift of size distributions towards larger particles. Increase in particle size was further supported by a decreasing trend in absorption Angström exponent (AAE). Ion analysis showed major contribution of secondary species (ammonium sulfate and nitrate) and soil components (Ca2+, Mg2+). Non-sea salt K+ exhibited very good correlation with secondary species, indicating the long-range transport of BB smoke as a possible common source. Individual particle analysis of the samples collected during BB-transport event in Athens revealed elevated number of soot externally mixed with fly ash Ca-rich particles. This result is in agreement with the increased OC and CC levels measured, thus pointing towards the main components comprising the aged BB aerosol microstructure.

  14. Wind erosion from a sagebrush steppe burned by wildfire: measurements of PM10 and total horizontal sediment flux

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wagenbrenner, Natalie S.; Germino, Matthew J.; Lamb, Brian K.; Robichaud, Peter R.; Foltz, Randy B.

    2013-01-01

    above the soil surface, had a maximum PM10 vertical flux of 100 mg m-2 s-1, and generated a large dust plume that was visible in satellite imagery. The peak PM10 concentration measured on-site at a height of 2 m in the downwind portion of the burned area was 690 mg m-3. Our results indicate that wildfire can convert a relatively stable landscape into one that is a major dust source.

  15. Wildfire Risk Mapping over the State of Mississippi: Land Surface Modeling Approach

    SciTech Connect

    Cooke, William H.; Mostovoy, Georgy; Anantharaj, Valentine G; Jolly, W. Matt

    2012-01-01

    Three fire risk indexes based on soil moisture estimates were applied to simulate wildfire probability over the southern part of Mississippi using the logistic regression approach. The fire indexes were retrieved from: (1) accumulated difference between daily precipitation and potential evapotranspiration (P-E); (2) top 10 cm soil moisture content simulated by the Mosaic land surface model; and (3) the Keetch-Byram drought index (KBDI). The P-E, KBDI, and soil moisture based indexes were estimated from gridded atmospheric and Mosaic-simulated soil moisture data available from the North American Land Data Assimilation System (NLDAS-2). Normalized deviations of these indexes from the 31-year mean (1980-2010) were fitted into the logistic regression model describing probability of wildfires occurrence as a function of the fire index. It was assumed that such normalization provides more robust and adequate description of temporal dynamics of soil moisture anomalies than the original (not normalized) set of indexes. The logistic model parameters were evaluated for 0.25 x0.25 latitude/longitude cells and for probability representing at least one fire event occurred during 5 consecutive days. A 23-year (1986-2008) forest fires record was used. Two periods were selected and examined (January mid June and mid September December). The application of the logistic model provides an overall good agreement between empirical/observed and model-fitted fire probabilities over the study area during both seasons. The fire risk indexes based on the top 10 cm soil moisture and KBDI have the largest impact on the wildfire odds (increasing it by almost 2 times in response to each unit change of the corresponding fire risk index during January mid June period and by nearly 1.5 times during mid September-December) observed over 0.25 x0.25 cells located along the state of Mississippi Coast line. This result suggests a rather strong control of fire risk indexes on fire occurrence probability

  16. Burns

    MedlinePlus

    ... if signs of infection develop. These signs include: Drainage or pus from the burned skin Fever Increased pain Red streaks spreading from the burn Swollen lymph nodes Also call a provider right away if ...

  17. Wildfire Awareness.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wallace, Glenda

    2002-01-01

    Provides information about the Firewise Program whose goal is to assist people to become more fire-aware and better prepared for the effects of wildfire on property. Discusses why there are so many wildfires and what can be done. Includes the Wildland Fire Risk and Hazard Severity Assessment Form. (KHR)

  18. Wildfire risk in the wildland-urban interface: A simulation study in northwestern Wisconsin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bar-Massada, A.; Radeloff, V.C.; Stewart, S.I.; Hawbaker, T.J.

    2009-01-01

    The rapid growth of housing in and near the wildland-urban interface (WUI) increases wildfire risk to lives and structures. To reduce fire risk, it is necessary to identify WUI housing areas that are more susceptible to wildfire. This is challenging, because wildfire patterns depend on fire behavior and spread, which in turn depend on ignition locations, weather conditions, the spatial arrangement of fuels, and topography. The goal of our study was to assess wildfire risk to a 60,000 ha WUI area in northwestern Wisconsin while accounting for all of these factors. We conducted 6000 simulations with two dynamic fire models: Fire Area Simulator (FARSITE) and Minimum Travel Time (MTT) in order to map the spatial pattern of burn probabilities. Simulations were run under normal and extreme weather conditions to assess the effect of weather on fire spread, burn probability, and risk to structures. The resulting burn probability maps were intersected with maps of structure locations and land cover types. The simulations revealed clear hotspots of wildfire activity and a large range of wildfire risk to structures in the study area. As expected, the extreme weather conditions yielded higher burn probabilities over the entire landscape, as well as to different land cover classes and individual structures. Moreover, the spatial pattern of risk was significantly different between extreme and normal weather conditions. The results highlight the fact that extreme weather conditions not only produce higher fire risk than normal weather conditions, but also change the fine-scale locations of high risk areas in the landscape, which is of great importance for fire management in WUI areas. In addition, the choice of weather data may limit the potential for comparisons of risk maps for different areas and for extrapolating risk maps to future scenarios where weather conditions are unknown. Our approach to modeling wildfire risk to structures can aid fire risk reduction management

  19. AEGIS: a wildfire prevention and management information system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kalabokidis, Kostas; Ager, Alan; Finney, Mark; Athanasis, Nikos; Palaiologou, Palaiologos; Vasilakos, Christos

    2016-03-01

    We describe a Web-GIS wildfire prevention and management platform (AEGIS) developed as an integrated and easy-to-use decision support tool to manage wildland fire hazards in Greece (http://aegis.aegean.gr). The AEGIS platform assists with early fire warning, fire planning, fire control and coordination of firefighting forces by providing online access to information that is essential for wildfire management. The system uses a number of spatial and non-spatial data sources to support key system functionalities. Land use/land cover maps were produced by combining field inventory data with high-resolution multispectral satellite images (RapidEye). These data support wildfire simulation tools that allow the users to examine potential fire behavior and hazard with the Minimum Travel Time fire spread algorithm. End-users provide a minimum number of inputs such as fire duration, ignition point and weather information to conduct a fire simulation. AEGIS offers three types of simulations, i.e., single-fire propagation, point-scale calculation of potential fire behavior, and burn probability analysis, similar to the FlamMap fire behavior modeling software. Artificial neural networks (ANNs) were utilized for wildfire ignition risk assessment based on various parameters, training methods, activation functions, pre-processing methods and network structures. The combination of ANNs and expected burned area maps are used to generate integrated output map of fire hazard prediction. The system also incorporates weather information obtained from remote automatic weather stations and weather forecast maps. The system and associated computation algorithms leverage parallel processing techniques (i.e., High Performance Computing and Cloud Computing) that ensure computational power required for real-time application. All AEGIS functionalities are accessible to authorized end-users through a web-based graphical user interface. An

  20. Fire impact on soil-water repellency and functioning of semi-arid croplands and rangelands: Implications for prescribed burnings and wildfires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stavi, Ilan; Barkai, Daniel; Knoll, Yaakov M.; Glion, Hiam Abu; Katra, Itzhak; Brook, Anna; Zaady, Eli

    2017-03-01

    , and generally showed higher values for the burnt lands. Overall, this study shows that the low- to moderate-fire severity only slightly increased the soil water repellency, and at the same time, increased on-site availability of some important soil resources. Nevertheless, it is acknowledged that such fires could impose risks to off-site air and water source quality. This study has implications for the assessment of geo-ecosystem functioning, as well as for the status and dynamics of soil resources following prescribed burnings or wildfires.

  1. Assessing landscape scale wildfire exposure for highly valued resources in a Mediterranean area.

    PubMed

    Alcasena, Fermín J; Salis, Michele; Ager, Alan A; Arca, Bachisio; Molina, Domingo; Spano, Donatella

    2015-05-01

    We used a fire simulation modeling approach to assess landscape scale wildfire exposure for highly valued resources and assets (HVR) on a fire-prone area of 680 km(2) located in central Sardinia, Italy. The study area was affected by several wildfires in the last half century: some large and intense fire events threatened wildland urban interfaces as well as other socioeconomic and cultural values. Historical wildfire and weather data were used to inform wildfire simulations, which were based on the minimum travel time algorithm as implemented in FlamMap. We simulated 90,000 fires that replicated recent large fire events in the area spreading under severe weather conditions to generate detailed maps of wildfire likelihood and intensity. Then, we linked fire modeling outputs to a geospatial risk assessment framework focusing on buffer areas around HVR. The results highlighted a large variation in burn probability and fire intensity in the vicinity of HVRs, and allowed us to identify the areas most exposed to wildfires and thus to a higher potential damage. Fire intensity in the HVR buffers was mainly related to fuel types, while wind direction, topographic features, and historically based ignition pattern were the key factors affecting fire likelihood. The methodology presented in this work can have numerous applications, in the study area and elsewhere, particularly to address and inform fire risk management, landscape planning and people safety on the vicinity of HVRs.

  2. Assessing the Potential Impact of the 2015-2016 El Niño on the California Rim Fire Burn Scar Through Debris Flow Hazard Mapping

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Larcom, S.; Grigsby, S.; Ustin, S.

    2015-12-01

    Wildfires are a perennial issue for California, and the current record-breaking drought is exacerbating the potential problems for the state. Fires leave behind burn scars characterized by diminished vegetative cover and abundant bare soil, and these areas are especially susceptible to storm events that pose an elevated risk of debris flows and sediment-rich sheet wash. This study focused on the 2013 Rim Fire that devastated significant portions of Stanislaus National Forest and Yosemite National Park, and utilized readily available NASA JPL SRTM elevation data and AVIRIS spectral imaging data to construct a debris flow hazard map that assesses mass wasting risk for the Rim Fire burn scar. This study consisted entirely of remotely sensed data, which was processed in software programs such as ENVI, GRASS GIS, ArcMap, and Google Earth. Parameters that were taken into consideration when constructing this map include hill slope (greater than 30 percent rise), burn severity (assessed by calculating NDVI), and erodibility of the soil (by comparing spectral reflectance of AVIRIS images with the reference spectra of illite). By calculating percent of total burn area, 6% was classified as low risk, 55% as medium risk, and 39% as high risk. In addition, this study assessed the importance of the 2015-2016 El Niño, which is projected to be one of the strongest on record, by studying historic rainfall records and storm events of past El Niño's. Hydrological and infrastructural problems that could be caused by short-term convective or long-term synoptic storms and subsequent debris flows were explored as well.

  3. Wildfire Smoke

    MedlinePlus

    ... you protect your health: Pay attention to local air quality reports . When a wildfire occurs in your area, ... United States have guidelines to help people estimate air quality based on how far they can see. If ...

  4. Wildfire: A Family Activity Book.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    WGBH-TV, Boston, MA.

    This family activity book provides information for discovering and demonstrating the science of fire--how firefighters decide which fires to let burn and which to put out, how fires start and spread, and what to do when they flare up. Chapters include: (1) "A Game about Wildfire"; (2) "Create a Fire Safety Commercial"; (3)…

  5. Physical and optical properties of aged biomass burning aerosol from wildfires in Siberia and the Western USA at the Mt. Bachelor Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laing, James R.; Jaffe, Daniel A.; Hee, Jonathan R.

    2016-12-01

    The summer of 2015 was an extreme forest fire year in the Pacific Northwest. Our sample site at the Mt. Bachelor Observatory (MBO, 2.7 km a.s.l.) in central Oregon observed biomass burning (BB) events more than 50 % of the time during August. In this paper we characterize the aerosol physical and optical properties of 19 aged BB events during August 2015. Six of the 19 events were influenced by Siberian fires originating near Lake Baikal that were transported to MBO over 4-10 days. The remainder of the events resulted from wildfires in Northern California and Southwestern Oregon with transport times to MBO ranging from 3 to 35 h. Fine particulate matter (PM1), carbon monoxide (CO), aerosol light scattering coefficients (σscat), aerosol light absorption coefficients (σabs), and aerosol number size distributions were measured throughout the campaign. We found that the Siberian events had a significantly higher Δσabs/ΔCO enhancement ratio, higher mass absorption efficiency (MAE; Δσabs/ΔPM1), lower single scattering albedo (ω), and lower absorption Ångström exponent (AAE) when compared with the regional events. We suggest that the observed Siberian events represent that portion of the plume that has hotter flaming fire conditions and thus enabled strong pyroconvective lofting and long-range transport to MBO. The Siberian events observed at MBO therefore represent a selected portion of the original plume that would then have preferentially higher black carbon emissions and thus an enhancement in absorption. The lower AAE values in the Siberian events compared to regional events indicate a lack of brown carbon (BrC) production by the Siberian fires or a loss of BrC during transport. We found that mass scattering efficiencies (MSE) for the BB events ranged from 2.50 to 4.76 m2 g-1. We measured aerosol size distributions with a scanning mobility particle sizer (SMPS). Number size distributions ranged from unimodal to bimodal and had geometric mean diameters (Dpm

  6. Burns

    MedlinePlus

    ... cause swelling, blistering, scarring and, in serious cases, shock, and even death. They also can lead to infections because they damage your skin's protective barrier. Treatment for burns depends on the cause of the ...

  7. A ranking system for prescribed burn prioritization in Table Mountain National Park, South Africa.

    PubMed

    Cowell, Carly Ruth; Cheney, Chad

    2017-04-01

    To aid prescribed burn decision making in Table Mountain National Park, in South Africa a priority ranking system was tested. Historically a wildfire suppression strategy was adopted due to wildfires threatening urban areas close to the park, with few prescribed burns conducted. A large percentage of vegetation across the park exceeded the ecological threshold of 15 years. We held a multidisciplinary workshop, to prioritize areas for prescribed burning. Fire Management Blocks were mapped and assessed using the following seven categories: (1) ecological, (2) management, (3) tourism, (4) infrastructure, (5) invasive alien vegetation, (6) wildland-urban interface and (7) heritage. A priority ranking system was used to score each block. The oldest or most threatened vegetation types were not necessarily the top priority blocks. Selected blocks were burnt and burning fewer large blocks proved more effective economically, ecologically and practically due to the limited burning days permitted. The prioritization process was efficient as it could be updated annually following prescribed burns and wildfire incidents. Integration of prescribed burn planning and wildfire suppression strategies resulted in a reduction in operational costs. We recommend protected areas make use of a priority ranking system developed with expert knowledge and stakeholder engagement to determine objective prescribed burn plans.

  8. Monitoring a boreal wildfire using multi-temporal Radarsat-1 intensity and coherence images

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rykhus, Russ; Lu, Zhiming

    2011-01-01

    Twenty-five C-band Radarsat-1 synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images acquired from the summer of 2002 to the summer of 2005 are used to map a 2003 boreal wildfire (B346) in the Yukon Flats National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska under conditions of near-persistent cloud cover. Our analysis is primarily based on the 15 SAR scenes acquired during arctic growing seasons. The Radarsat-1 intensity data are used to map the onset and progression of the fire, and interferometric coherence images are used to qualify burn severity and monitor post-fire recovery. We base our analysis of the fire on three test sites, two from within the fire and one unburned site. The B346 fire increased backscattered intensity values for the two burn study sites by approximately 5-6 dB and substantially reduced coherence from background levels of approximately 0.8 in unburned background forested areas to approximately 0.2 in the burned area. Using ancillary vegetation information from the National Land Cover Database (NLCD) and information on burn severity from Normalized Burn Ratio (NBR) data, we conclude that burn site 2 was more severely burned than burn site 1 and that C-band interferometric coherence data are useful for mapping landscape changes due to fire. Differences in burn severity and topography are determined to be the likely reasons for the observed differences in post-fire intensity and coherence trends between burn sites.

  9. Status of vegetation cover after 25 years since the last wildfire (Río Verde, Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martinez-Murillo, Juan F.; Remond, Ricardo; Ruiz-Sinoga, José D.

    2016-04-01

    Climatic conditions play an important role in the post-fire vegetation recovery as well as other factors like topography, soil, and pre and post-fire land use (Shakesby, 2011; Robichaud et al., 2013). This study deals with the characterization of the vegetation cover status in an area affected by a wildfire 25 years ago. Namely, the objectives are to: i) compare the current and previous vegetation cover to wildfire; and ii) evaluate whether the current vegetation has recovered the previous cover to wildfire. The study area is mainly located in the Rio Verde watershed (Sierra de las Nieves, South of Spain). It corresponds to an area affected by a wildfire in August 8th, 1991. The burned area was equal to 8,156 ha. The burn severity was spatially very high. The main geographic features of the burned area are: mountainous topography (altitudes ranging from 250 m to 1700 m; slope gradient >25%; exposure mainly southfacing); igneous (peridotites), metamorphic (gneiss) and calcareous rocks (limestones); and predominant forest land use (Pinus pinaster sp. woodlands, 10%; pinus opened forest + shrubland, 40%; shrubland, 35%; and bare soil + grassland, 15%). Remote sensing techniques and GIS analysis has been applied to achieve the objectives. Landsat 5 and Landsat 8 images were used: July 13th, 1991 and July 1st, 2013, for the previous wildfire situation and 22-years after, respectively. The 1990 CORINE land cover was also considered to map 1991 land uses prior the wildfire. The Andalucía Regional Government wildfire historic records were used to select the burned area and its geographical limit. 1991 and 2013 land cover maps were obtained by means of object-oriented classifications. Also, NDVI index were calculated and mapped for both years in order to compare the status of vegetation cover. According to the results, the combination of remote sensing and GIS analysis let map the most recovered areas affected by the wildfire in 1991. The vegetation indexes indicated that

  10. AEGIS: a wildfire prevention and management information system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kalabokidis, K.; Ager, A.; Finney, M.; Athanasis, N.; Palaiologou, P.; Vasilakos, C.

    2015-10-01

    A Web-GIS wildfire prevention and management platform (AEGIS) was developed as an integrated and easy-to-use decision support tool (http://aegis.aegean.gr). The AEGIS platform assists with early fire warning, fire planning, fire control and coordination of firefighting forces by providing access to information that is essential for wildfire management. Databases were created with spatial and non-spatial data to support key system functionalities. Updated land use/land cover maps were produced by combining field inventory data with high resolution multispectral satellite images (RapidEye) to be used as inputs in fire propagation modeling with the Minimum Travel Time algorithm. End users provide a minimum number of inputs such as fire duration, ignition point and weather information to conduct a fire simulation. AEGIS offers three types of simulations; i.e. single-fire propagations, conditional burn probabilities and at the landscape-level, similar to the FlamMap fire behavior modeling software. Artificial neural networks (ANN) were utilized for wildfire ignition risk assessment based on various parameters, training methods, activation functions, pre-processing methods and network structures. The combination of ANNs and expected burned area maps produced an integrated output map for fire danger prediction. The system also incorporates weather measurements from remote automatic weather stations and weather forecast maps. The structure of the algorithms relies on parallel processing techniques (i.e. High Performance Computing and Cloud Computing) that ensure computational power and speed. All AEGIS functionalities are accessible to authorized end users through a web-based graphical user interface. An innovative mobile application, AEGIS App, acts as a complementary tool to the web-based version of the system.

  11. A fully automatic processing chain to produce Burn Scar Mapping products, using the full Landsat archive over Greece

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kontoes, Charalampos; Papoutsis, Ioannis; Herekakis, Themistoklis; Michail, Dimitrios; Ieronymidi, Emmanuela

    2013-04-01

    Remote sensing tools for the accurate, robust and timely assessment of the damages inflicted by forest wildfires provide information that is of paramount importance to public environmental agencies and related stakeholders before, during and after the crisis. The Institute for Astronomy, Astrophysics, Space Applications and Remote Sensing of the National Observatory of Athens (IAASARS/NOA) has developed a fully automatic single and/or multi date processing chain that takes as input archived Landsat 4, 5 or 7 raw images and produces precise diachronic burnt area polygons and damage assessments over the Greek territory. The methodology consists of three fully automatic stages: 1) the pre-processing stage where the metadata of the raw images are extracted, followed by the application of the LEDAPS software platform for calibration and mask production and the Automated Precise Orthorectification Package, developed by NASA, for image geo-registration and orthorectification, 2) the core-BSM (Burn Scar Mapping) processing stage which incorporates a published classification algorithm based on a series of physical indexes, the application of two filters for noise removal using graph-based techniques and the grouping of pixels classified as burnt to form the appropriate pixels clusters before proceeding to conversion from raster to vector, and 3) the post-processing stage where the products are thematically refined and enriched using auxiliary GIS layers (underlying land cover/use, administrative boundaries, etc.) and human logic/evidence to suppress false alarms and omission errors. The established processing chain has been successfully applied to the entire archive of Landsat imagery over Greece spanning from 1984 to 2012, which has been collected and managed in IAASARS/NOA. The number of full Landsat frames that were subject of process in the framework of the study was 415. These burn scar mapping products are generated for the first time to such a temporal and spatial

  12. High-resolution mapping of biomass burning emissions in tropical regions across three continents

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Yusheng; Matsunaga, Tsuneo; Saito, Makoto

    2015-04-01

    Biomass burning emissions from open vegetation fires (forest fires, savanna fires, agricultural waste burning), human waste and biofuel combustion contain large amounts of trace gases (e.g., CO2, CH4, and N2O) and aerosols (BC and OC), which significantly impact ecosystem productivity, global atmospheric chemistry, and climate . With the help of recently released satellite products, biomass density based on satellite and ground-based observation data, and spatial variable combustion factors, this study developed a new high-resolution emissions inventory for biomass burning in tropical regions across three continents in 2010. Emissions of trace gases and aerosols from open vegetation burning are estimated from burned areas, fuel loads, combustion factors, and emission factors. Burned areas were derived from MODIS MCD64A1 burned area product, fuel loads were mapped from biomass density data sets for herbaceous and tree-covered land based on satellite and ground-based observation data. To account for spatial heterogeneity in combustion factors, global fractional tree cover (MOD44B) and vegetation cover maps (MCD12Q1) were introduced to estimate the combustion factors in different regions by using their relationship with tree cover under less than 40%, between 40-60% and above 60% conditions. For emission factors, the average values for each fuel type from field measurements are used. In addition to biomass burning from open vegetation fires, the emissions from human waste (residential and dump) burning and biofuel burning in 2010 were also estimated for 76 countries in tropical regions across the three continents and then allocated into each pixel with 1 km grid based on the population density (Gridded Population of the World v3). Our total estimates for the tropical regions across the three continents in 2010 were 17744.5 Tg CO2, 730.3 Tg CO, 32.0 Tg CH4, 31.6 Tg NOx, 119.2 Tg NMOC, 6.3 Tg SO2, 9.8 NH3 Tg, 81.8 Tg PM2.5, 48.0 Tg OC, and 5.7 Tg BC, respectively. Open

  13. Application of wildfire spread and behavior models to assess fire probability and severity in the Mediterranean region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salis, Michele; Arca, Bachisio; Bacciu, Valentina; Spano, Donatella; Duce, Pierpaolo; Santoni, Paul; Ager, Alan; Finney, Mark

    2010-05-01

    Characterizing the spatial pattern of large fire occurrence and severity is an important feature of the fire management planning in the Mediterranean region. The spatial characterization of fire probabilities, fire behavior distributions and value changes are key components for quantitative risk assessment and for prioritizing fire suppression resources, fuel treatments and law enforcement. Because of the growing wildfire severity and frequency in recent years (e.g.: Portugal, 2003 and 2005; Italy and Greece, 2007 and 2009), there is an increasing demand for models and tools that can aid in wildfire prediction and prevention. Newer wildfire simulation systems offer promise in this regard, and allow for fine scale modeling of wildfire severity and probability. Several new applications has resulted from the development of a minimum travel time (MTT) fire spread algorithm (Finney, 2002), that models the fire growth searching for the minimum time for fire to travel among nodes in a 2D network. The MTT approach makes computationally feasible to simulate thousands of fires and generate burn probability and fire severity maps over large areas. The MTT algorithm is imbedded in a number of research and fire modeling applications. High performance computers are typically used for MTT simulations, although the algorithm is also implemented in the FlamMap program (www.fire.org). In this work, we described the application of the MTT algorithm to estimate spatial patterns of burn probability and to analyze wildfire severity in three fire prone areas of the Mediterranean Basin, specifically Sardinia (Italy), Sicily (Italy) and Corsica (France) islands. We assembled fuels and topographic data for the simulations in 500 x 500 m grids for the study areas. The simulations were run using 100,000 ignitions under weather conditions that replicated severe and moderate weather conditions (97th and 70th percentile, July and August weather, 1995-2007). We used both random ignition locations

  14. Distribution, Transport, and Accumulation of Pyrogenic Black Carbon in Post-Wildfire Watersheds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galanter, A.; Cadol, D. D.; Frey, B.; Lohse, K. A.

    2014-12-01

    Large, high severity wildfires greatly alter forest structure, water quality, and soil development/erosion. With increased frequency of such wildfires also follows heavy post-wildfire debris flows and flooding which deliver high loads of sediment and pyrogenic black carbon (PyC) to downstream waterways. The accumulation of PyC is a multi-faceted and dynamic issue in the critical zone. Generated by incomplete combustion of organic matter, PyC (in the form of soot and char) impacts turbidity, biological and chemical oxygen demand, and pH. In addition, PyC has the potential to sequester contaminants and can store carbon over short and long timescales. The impacts of two recent wildfires in Northern New Mexico are studied with the goal of understanding the fluxes and residence times of PyC in post-wildfire, mountainous watersheds. Employing burn severity maps and geospatial data, we selected three sites to collect soil and water samples to characterize PyC: a control, an area impacted by a large, severe burn (2011), and an area impacted by a smaller, less severe burn (2013). By collaborating with researchers at the Jemez Critical Zone Observatory, soil samples are being analyzed and will provide pre-wildfire PyC concentrations for the 2013 burn area. In this study, PyC is treated as both a particulate and a solute that is transported throughout the watershed as well as degraded in soils, surface water and groundwater. We used two black carbon quantification methods: the chemo-thermal oxidation (CTO-375) method to distinguish between soil soot and char, and the benzene polycarboxylic acids (BPCA) method to quantify the total concentrations of PyC in soil and water samples. Preliminary soil data from the CTO-375 method show comparable soot concentrations in the control, 2011, and 2013 burn indicating that the soot is more recalcitrant than char and remains in the watershed long after a wildfire. This data also suggests that the fluxes of black carbon over short time

  15. Assessing wildfire exposure in the Wildland-Urban Interface area of the mountains of central Argentina.

    PubMed

    Argañaraz, J P; Radeloff, V C; Bar-Massada, A; Gavier-Pizarro, G I; Scavuzzo, C M; Bellis, L M

    2017-03-24

    Wildfires are a major threat to people and property in Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) communities worldwide, but while the patterns of the WUI in North America, Europe and Oceania have been studied before, this is not the case in Latin America. Our goals were to a) map WUI areas in central Argentina, and b) assess wildfire exposure for WUI communities in relation to historic fires, with special emphasis on large fires and estimated burn probability based on an empirical model. We mapped the WUI in the mountains of central Argentina (810,000 ha), after digitizing the location of 276,700 buildings and deriving vegetation maps from satellite imagery. The areas where houses and wildland vegetation intermingle were classified as Intermix WUI (housing density > 6.17 hu/km(2) and wildland vegetation cover > 50%), and the areas where wildland vegetation abuts settlements were classified as Interface WUI (housing density > 6.17 hu/km(2), wildland vegetation cover < 50%, but within 600 m of a vegetated patch larger than 5 km(2)). We generated burn probability maps based on historical fire data from 1999 to 2011; as well as from an empirical model of fire frequency. WUI areas occupied 15% of our study area and contained 144,000 buildings (52%). Most WUI area was Intermix WUI, but most WUI buildings were in the Interface WUI. Our findings suggest that central Argentina has a WUI fire problem. WUI areas included most of the buildings exposed to wildfires and most of the buildings located in areas of higher burn probability. Our findings can help focus fire management activities in areas of higher risk, and ultimately provide support for landscape management and planning aimed at reducing wildfire risk in WUI communities.

  16. Studying the effects of fuel treatment based on burn probability on a boreal forest landscape.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhihua; Yang, Jian; He, Hong S

    2013-01-30

    Fuel treatment is assumed to be a primary tactic to mitigate intense and damaging wildfires. However, how to place treatment units across a landscape and assess its effectiveness is difficult for landscape-scale fuel management planning. In this study, we used a spatially explicit simulation model (LANDIS) to conduct wildfire risk assessments and optimize the placement of fuel treatments at the landscape scale. We first calculated a baseline burn probability map from empirical data (fuel, topography, weather, and fire ignition and size data) to assess fire risk. We then prioritized landscape-scale fuel treatment based on maps of burn probability and fuel loads (calculated from the interactions among tree composition, stand age, and disturbance history), and compared their effects on reducing fire risk. The burn probability map described the likelihood of burning on a given location; the fuel load map described the probability that a high fuel load will accumulate on a given location. Fuel treatment based on the burn probability map specified that stands with high burn probability be treated first, while fuel treatment based on the fuel load map specified that stands with high fuel loads be treated first. Our results indicated that fuel treatment based on burn probability greatly reduced the burned area and number of fires of different intensities. Fuel treatment based on burn probability also produced more dispersed and smaller high-risk fire patches and therefore can improve efficiency of subsequent fire suppression. The strength of our approach is that more model components (e.g., succession, fuel, and harvest) can be linked into LANDIS to map the spatially explicit wildfire risk and its dynamics to fuel management, vegetation dynamics, and harvesting.

  17. FIRESTORM: Modelling the water quality risk of wildfire.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mason, C. I.; Sheridan, G. J.; Smith, H. G.; Jones, O.; Chong, D.; Tolhurst, K.

    2012-04-01

    ,000 pre-processed spatially distributed fire intensity and flame height maps, generated by a fire behaviour simulator. This part of the model predicts the annual risk of the water supply catchment burning and the spatial extent and severity of the burn. These spatial fire severity maps may be combined with vegetation maps and information on soils to determine initial conditions for modelling of sediment and associated contaminant loads delivered to reservoirs. Erosion and water quality models that form part of the overall model framework include a catchment-scale constituent load model to represent widespread rainfall events and a semi-distributed runoff and erosion connectivity model applied at the small catchment scale for convective storm events. Recent work has shown that localised, intense convective storms may also generate debris flows after fire in south-eastern Australia. Therefore, for the application of the model framework to reservoirs supplying Melbourne, an empirical debris flow erosion model is included. For the localised event models, sediment is routed from sub-catchments through the main channel network to the reservoir boundary. These erosion models are modular so that FIRESTORM may be adapted for use in a region of the world that experiences different dominant erosion processes. FIRESTORM will enable water supply managers to estimate the current water quality risk of wildfire and allow scenario testing to explore the effect of mitigation strategies (e.g. planned burning, post-fire erosion control measures) designed to reduce fire impacts and the magnitude of loads entering reservoirs. This model will be a valuable new tool for better decision making to protect future water supplies.

  18. A comparative evaluation of MODIS/ASTER airborne simulator (MASTER) data and burn indices for mapping southern California fires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harris, S. L.; Hook, S. J.

    2009-12-01

    Large fires occur annually in southern California, producing impacts at a number of scales, from local impacts on vegetation, hydrology and microclimates, to global impacts such as emissions, affecting atmospheric chemistry, air quality, radiation balance and biogeochemical cycling. As a consequence fires are routinely mapped using various sensors and burn indices. However, the indices employed for mapping these fires have not been developed and optimized for mapping southern California burned surfaces. Therefore, this study utilizes the high spatial and spectral resolution imagery from the MODIS/ASTER airborne simulator (MASTER) to identify the most effective bands and indices specifically for burned area mapping of the southern California region. The fire perimeter is based on the Burned Area Reflectance Classification (BARC) map created by the United States Forest Service (USFS), Remote Sensing Applications Center (RSAC) and a supervised classification which defines the burned and unburned regions. A separability index is employed to identify the bands and indices that can best distinguish between classes. The results identify a range of well performing indices, such as the Normalized Burn Ratio (NBR) and the Vegetation Index based on mid-infrared spectral region (VI3), and some poor performing indices, such as the Global Environment Monitoring Index (GEMI) and the Burned Area Index (BAI). Additionally this study highlights the indices that perform better over certain vegetation types. These results are useful for understanding the application of remotely sensed data for mapping burned surfaces. Improved burned area mapping capabilities are essential for informing land managers when identifying regions susceptible to hazards (such as debris and flood flows) and for deciding where to allocate time and resources in recovery efforts. Additionally, these results can be used to validate other sensors that are used to map burned surfaces on greater spatial and

  19. Wildfire risk in the wildland-urban interface: A simulation study in northwestern Wisconsin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Massada, Avi Bar; Radeloff, Volker C.; Stewart, Susan I.; Hawbaker, Todd J.

    2009-01-01

    The rapid growth of housing in and near the wildland–urban interface (WUI) increases wildfirerisk to lives and structures. To reduce fire risk, it is necessary to identify WUI housing areas that are more susceptible to wildfire. This is challenging, because wildfire patterns depend on fire behavior and spread, which in turn depend on ignition locations, weather conditions, the spatial arrangement of fuels, and topography. The goal of our study was to assess wildfirerisk to a 60,000 ha WUI area in northwesternWisconsin while accounting for all of these factors. We conducted 6000 simulations with two dynamic fire models: Fire Area Simulator (FARSITE) and Minimum Travel Time (MTT) in order to map the spatial pattern of burn probabilities. Simulations were run under normal and extreme weather conditions to assess the effect of weather on fire spread, burn probability, and risk to structures. The resulting burn probability maps were intersected with maps of structure locations and land cover types. The simulations revealed clear hotspots of wildfire activity and a large range of wildfirerisk to structures in the study area. As expected, the extreme weather conditions yielded higher burn probabilities over the entire landscape, as well as to different land cover classes and individual structures. Moreover, the spatial pattern of risk was significantly different between extreme and normal weather conditions. The results highlight the fact that extreme weather conditions not only produce higher fire risk than normal weather conditions, but also change the fine-scale locations of high risk areas in the landscape, which is of great importance for fire management in WUI areas. In addition, the choice of weather data may limit the potential for comparisons of risk maps for different areas and for extrapolating risk maps to future scenarios where weather conditions are unknown. Our approach to modeling wildfirerisk to structures can aid fire risk reduction management

  20. The FireWork air quality forecast system with near-real-time biomass burning emissions: Recent developments and evaluation of performance for the 2015 North American wildfire season

    PubMed Central

    Pavlovic, Radenko; Chen, Jack; Anderson, Kerry; Moran, Michael D.; Beaulieu, Paul-André; Davignon, Didier; Cousineau, Sophie

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Environment and Climate Change Canada’s FireWork air quality (AQ) forecast system for North America with near-real-time biomass burning emissions has been running experimentally during the Canadian wildfire season since 2013. The system runs twice per day with model initializations at 00 UTC and 12 UTC, and produces numerical AQ forecast guidance with 48-hr lead time. In this work we describe the FireWork system, which incorporates near-real-time biomass burning emissions based on the Canadian Wildland Fire Information System (CWFIS) as an input to the operational Regional Air Quality Deterministic Prediction System (RAQDPS). To demonstrate the capability of the system we analyzed two forecast periods in 2015 (June 2–July 15, and August 15–31) when fire activity was high, and observed fire-smoke-impacted areas in western Canada and the western United States. Modeled PM2.5 surface concentrations were compared with surface measurements and benchmarked with results from the operational RAQDPS, which did not consider near-real-time biomass burning emissions. Model performance statistics showed that FireWork outperformed RAQDPS with improvements in forecast hourly PM2.5 across the region; the results were especially significant for stations near the path of fire plume trajectories. Although the hourly PM2.5 concentrations predicted by FireWork still displayed bias for areas with active fires for these two periods (mean bias [MB] of –7.3 µg m−3 and 3.1 µg m−3), it showed better forecast skill than the RAQDPS (MB of –11.7 µg m−3 and –5.8 µg m−3) and demonstrated a greater ability to capture temporal variability of episodic PM2.5 events (correlation coefficient values of 0.50 and 0.69 for FireWork compared to 0.03 and 0.11 for RAQDPS). A categorical forecast comparison based on an hourly PM2.5 threshold of 30 µg m−3 also showed improved scores for probability of detection (POD), critical success index (CSI), and false alarm rate (FAR

  1. MODIS 250m burned area mapping based on an algorithm using change point detection and Markov random fields.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mota, Bernardo; Pereira, Jose; Campagnolo, Manuel; Killick, Rebeca

    2013-04-01

    Area burned in tropical savannas of Brazil was mapped using MODIS-AQUA daily 250m resolution imagery by adapting one of the European Space Agency fire_CCI project burned area algorithms, based on change point detection and Markov random fields. The study area covers 1,44 Mkm2 and was performed with data from 2005. The daily 1000 m image quality layer was used for cloud and cloud shadow screening. The algorithm addresses each pixel as a time series and detects changes in the statistical properties of NIR reflectance values, to identify potential burning dates. The first step of the algorithm is robust filtering, to exclude outlier observations, followed by application of the Pruned Exact Linear Time (PELT) change point detection technique. Near-infrared (NIR) spectral reflectance changes between time segments, and post change NIR reflectance values are combined into a fire likelihood score. Change points corresponding to an increase in reflectance are dismissed as potential burn events, as are those occurring outside of a pre-defined fire season. In the last step of the algorithm, monthly burned area probability maps and detection date maps are converted to dichotomous (burned-unburned maps) using Markov random fields, which take into account both spatial and temporal relations in the potential burned area maps. A preliminary assessment of our results is performed by comparison with data from the MODIS 1km active fires and the 500m burned area products, taking into account differences in spatial resolution between the two sensors.

  2. Viejas Wildfire

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    More than 2,000 firefighters continue to battle the 'Viejas Wildfire' which has consumed more than 11,000 acres in the dry, mountainous region just east of San Diego, California. Authorities there believe the blaze may have been started on Wednesday, January 3, by a cigarette thrown from a car on Interstate 8. Shifty winds with gusts of up to 65 miles per hour helped fan and quickly spread the flames. Late Wednesday, eyewitnesses reported seeing thick smoke and dime-sized bits of ash blowing toward downtown San Diego, prompting health officials there to warn residents with respiratory conditions to take necessary precautions. Parts of other communities, such as Alpine, have been evacuated to avoid the rapidly spreading flames. Firefighters estimate that the Viejas Fire, named after a nearby Native American reservation, will be contained by late Saturday, January 6. This image of the wildfire was acquired on January 4, 2001, by the Moderate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), flying aboard NASA's Terra spacecraft. The scene shows the wildfire and smoke plume from the Alpine region, east of San Diego. This false-color image was generated using a combination of MODIS' thermal infrared data, at 1-kilometer resolution, along with two of the sensor's 500-meter resolution visible channels. These data were acquired via direct broadcast by the SeaSpace TeraScan SX-EOS receiving station at SeaSpace Corporation in Poway, California. The image was processed, Earth-located and enhanced using TeraScan software. Image courtesy Dave Brooks, SeaSpace Corporation

  3. Application of wildfire simulation models for risk analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ager, A.; Finney, M.

    2009-04-01

    Wildfire simulation models are being widely used by fire and fuels specialists in the U.S. to support tactical and strategic decisions related to the mitigation of wildfire risk. Much of this application has resulted from the development of a minimum travel time (MTT) fire spread algorithm (M. Finney) that makes it computationally feasible to simulate thousands of fires and generate burn probability and intensity maps over large areas (10,000 - 2,000,000 ha). The MTT algorithm is parallelized for multi-threaded processing and is imbedded in a number of research and applied fire modeling applications. High performance computers (e.g., 32-way 64 bit SMP) are typically used for MTT simulations, although the algorithm is also implemented in the 32 bit desktop FlamMap3 program (www.fire.org). Extensive testing has shown that this algorithm can replicate large fire boundaries in the heterogeneous landscapes that typify much of the wildlands in the western U.S. In this paper, we describe the application of the MTT algorithm to understand spatial patterns of burn probability (BP), and to analyze wildfire risk to key human and ecological values. The work is focused on a federally-managed 2,000,000 ha landscape in the central interior region of Oregon State, USA. The fire-prone study area encompasses a wide array of topography and fuel types and a number of highly valued resources that are susceptible to fire. We quantitatively defined risk as the product of the probability of a fire and the resulting consequence. Burn probabilities at specific intensity classes were estimated for each 100 x 100 m pixel by simulating 100,000 wildfires under burn conditions that replicated recent severe wildfire events that occurred under conditions where fire suppression was generally ineffective (97th percentile, August weather). We repeated the simulation under milder weather (70th percentile, August weather) to replicate a "wildland fire use scenario" where suppression is minimized to

  4. The estimation of territiry predeposition to wildfires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Panchenko, Ekaterina; Dukarev, Anatoly

    2010-05-01

    Wildfires have significant environmental effects. The indirect damages because of fires are an emission of various combustion products such as aerosols, greenhouse gases and carcinogen. Analysis of smoke emission show that from 1 ha burning area emitted aerosols from 0.2 to 1 ton. The aim of our research is to estimate biomass burning emission: Biomass Burning Emission=BA x FL x CE x EF, where BA is Burned Area (ha); FL is forest litter cover (cm); CE is Combustion Efficiency (0-1), depends on a class of fire danger; EF is Emission Factor (kg emitted / kg dry-mass burnt). Consequently for estimation of biomass burning emission it is necessary to analyze of territory predisposition to wildfires and give characteristic of combustion material types for detection fire hazard, for prognosis fire origin and extension. Prognosis of occurrence of wildfires and definition of emissions is possible by means of data of depth forest litter, types of vegetation and type of landscapes including concrete weather conditions (seasons, length of arid period, current temperature, wind speed and its direction). The investigated object is the territory Tomskii district near to the city of Tomsk (56° 31 N-85°08 E) - with the population more than 500 thousand people. The conducted analysis of investigated territory and the calculation will be basic prognostic model for researching wildfires.

  5. The impact of antecedent fire area on burned area in southern California coastal ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Price, Owen F.; Bradstock, Ross A.; Keeley, Jon E.; Syphard, Alexandra D.

    2012-01-01

    Frequent wildfire disasters in southern California highlight the need for risk reduction strategies for the region, of which fuel reduction via prescribed burning is one option. However, there is no consensus about the effectiveness of prescribed fire in reducing the area of wildfire. Here, we use 29 years of historical fire mapping to quantify the relationship between annual wildfire area and antecedent fire area in predominantly shrub and grassland fuels in seven southern California counties, controlling for annual variation in weather patterns. This method has been used elsewhere to measure leverage: the reduction in wildfire area resulting from one unit of prescribed fire treatment. We found little evidence for a leverage effect (leverage = zero). Specifically our results showed no evidence that wildfire area was negatively influenced by previous fires, and only weak relationships with weather variables rainfall and Santa Ana wind occurrences, which were variables included to control for inter-annual variation. We conclude that this is because only 2% of the vegetation burns each year and so wildfires rarely encounter burned patches and chaparral shrublands can carry a fire within 1 or 2 years after previous fire. Prescribed burning is unlikely to have much influence on fire regimes in this area, though targeted treatment at the urban interface may be effective at providing defensible space for protecting assets. These results fit an emerging global model of fire leverage which position California at the bottom end of a continuum, with tropical savannas at the top (leverage = 1: direct replacement of wildfire by prescribed fire) and Australian eucalypt forests in the middle (leverage ∼ 0.25).

  6. The impact of antecedent fire area on burned area in southern California coastal ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Price, Owen F; Bradstock, Ross A; Keeley, Jon E; Syphard, Alexandra D

    2012-12-30

    Frequent wildfire disasters in southern California highlight the need for risk reduction strategies for the region, of which fuel reduction via prescribed burning is one option. However, there is no consensus about the effectiveness of prescribed fire in reducing the area of wildfire. Here, we use 29 years of historical fire mapping to quantify the relationship between annual wildfire area and antecedent fire area in predominantly shrub and grassland fuels in seven southern California counties, controlling for annual variation in weather patterns. This method has been used elsewhere to measure leverage: the reduction in wildfire area resulting from one unit of prescribed fire treatment. We found little evidence for a leverage effect (leverage = zero). Specifically our results showed no evidence that wildfire area was negatively influenced by previous fires, and only weak relationships with weather variables rainfall and Santa Ana wind occurrences, which were variables included to control for inter-annual variation. We conclude that this is because only 2% of the vegetation burns each year and so wildfires rarely encounter burned patches and chaparral shrublands can carry a fire within 1 or 2 years after previous fire. Prescribed burning is unlikely to have much influence on fire regimes in this area, though targeted treatment at the urban interface may be effective at providing defensible space for protecting assets. These results fit an emerging global model of fire leverage which position California at the bottom end of a continuum, with tropical savannas at the top (leverage = 1: direct replacement of wildfire by prescribed fire) and Australian eucalypt forests in the middle (leverage ~ 0.25).

  7. Wildfire and the future of water supply.

    PubMed

    Bladon, Kevin D; Emelko, Monica B; Silins, Uldis; Stone, Micheal

    2014-08-19

    In many parts of the world, forests provide high quality water for domestic, agricultural, industrial, and ecological needs, with water supplies in those regions inextricably linked to forest health. Wildfires have the potential to have devastating effects on aquatic ecosystems and community drinking water supply through impacts on water quantity and quality. In recent decades, a combination of fuel load accumulation, climate change, extensive droughts, and increased human presence in forests have resulted in increases in area burned and wildfire severity-a trend predicted to continue. Thus, the implications of wildfire for many downstream water uses are increasingly concerning, particularly the provision of safe drinking water, which may require additional treatment infrastructure and increased operations and maintenance costs in communities downstream of impacted landscapes. A better understanding of the effects of wildfire on water is needed to develop effective adaptation and mitigation strategies to protect globally critical water supplies originating in forested environments.

  8. Streamwater Quality Data from the 2002 Hayman, Hinman, and Missionary Ridge Wildfires, Colorado, 2003

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ranalli, Anthony J.; Stevens, Michael R.

    2003-01-01

    Concern about water-quality issues related to wildfires in Colorado has intensified because of the wildfires that occurred in Colorado during the summer of 2002. In 2003, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) conducted water-quality sampling of burned and unburned watersheds in the areas affected by the Hayman, Hinman, and Missionary Ridge wildfires to provide information to scientists, watershed managers, and public-water suppliers regarding the extent to which wildfires may cause water-quality degradation.

  9. Repeated wildfires alter forest recovery of mixed-conifer ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Stevens-Rumann, Camille; Morgan, Penelope

    2016-09-01

    Most models project warmer and drier climates that will contribute to larger and more frequent wildfires. However, it remains unknown how repeated wildfires alter post-fire successional patterns and forest structure. Here, we test the hypothesis that the number of wildfires, as well as the order and severity of wildfire events interact to alter forest structure and vegetation recovery and implications for vegetation management. In 2014, we examined forest structure, composition, and tree regeneration in stands that burned 1-18 yr before a subsequent 2007 wildfire. Three important findings emerged: (1) Repeatedly burned forests had 15% less woody surface fuels and 31% lower tree seedling densities compared with forests that only experienced one recent wildfire. These repeatedly burned areas are recovering differently than sites burned once, which may lead to alternative ecosystem structure. (2) Order of burn severity (high followed by low severity compared with low followed by high severity) did influence forest characteristics. When low burn severity followed high, forests had 60% lower canopy closure and total basal area with 92% fewer tree seedlings than when high burn severity followed low. (3) Time between fires had no effect on most variables measured following the second fire except large woody fuels, canopy closure and tree seedling density. We conclude that repeatedly burned areas meet many vegetation management objectives of reduced fuel loads and moderate tree seedling densities. These differences in forest structure, composition, and tree regeneration have implications not only for the trajectories of these forests, but may reduce fire intensity and burn severity of subsequent wildfires and may be used in conjunction with future fire suppression tactics.

  10. Impact of wildfires on regional air pollution | Science Inventory ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    We examine the impact of wildfires and agricultural/prescribed burning on regional air pollution and Air Quality Index (AQI) between 2006 and 2013. We define daily regional air pollution using monitoring sites for ozone (n=1595), PM2.5 collected by Federal Reference Method (n=1058), and constituents of PM2.5 from the Interagency Monitoring of PROtected Visual Environment (IMPROVE) network (n=264) and use satellite image analysis from the NOAA Hazard Mapping System (HMS) to determine days on which visible smoke plumes are detected in the vertical column of the monitoring site. To examine the impact of smoke from these fires on regional air pollution we use a two stage approach, accounting for within site (1st stage) and between site (2nd stage) variations. At the first stage we estimate a monitor-specific plume day effect describing the relative change in pollutant concentrations on the days impacted by smoke plume while accounting for confounding effects of season and temperature_. At the second stage we combine monitor-specific plume day effects with a Bayesian hierarchical model and estimate a pooled nationally-averaged effect. HMS visible smoke plumes were detected on 6% of ozone, 8% of PM2.5 and 6% of IMPROVE network monitoring days. Our preliminary results indicate that the long range transport of air pollutants from wildfires and prescribed burns increase ozone concentration by 11% and PM2.5 mass by 34%. On all of the days where monitoring sites were AQI

  11. Impact of wildfires on regional air pollution

    EPA Science Inventory

    We examine the impact of wildfires and agricultural/prescribed burning on regional air pollution and Air Quality Index (AQI) between 2006 and 2013. We define daily regional air pollution using monitoring sites for ozone (n=1595), PM2.5 collected by Federal Reference Method (n=10...

  12. Wildfires Dynamics in Siberian Larch Forests

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ponomarev, Evgenii I.; Kharuk, Viacheslav I.; Ranson, Kenneth J.

    2016-01-01

    Wildfire number and burned area temporal dynamics within all of Siberia and along a south-north transect in central Siberia (45deg-73degN) were studied based on NOAA/AVHRR (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/ Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer) and Terra/MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) data and field measurements for the period 1996-2015. In addition, fire return interval (FRI) along the south-north transect was analyzed. Both the number of forest fires and the size of the burned area increased during recent decades (p < 0.05). Significant correlations were found between forest fires, burned areas and air temperature (r = 0.5) and drought index (The Standardized Precipitation Evapotranspiration Index, SPEI) (r = 0.43). Within larch stands along the transect, wildfire frequency was strongly correlated with incoming solar radiation (r = 0.91). Fire danger period length decreased linearly from south to north along the transect. Fire return interval increased from 80 years at 62 N to 200 years at the Arctic Circle (6633' N), and to about 300 years near the northern limit of closed forest stands (about 71+ N). That increase was negatively correlated with incoming solar radiation (r = 0.95). Keywords: wildfires; drought index; larch stands; fire return interval; fire frequency; burned area; climate-induced trends in Siberian wildfires

  13. Water repellency diminishes peatland evaporation after wildfire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kettridge, Nick; Lukenbach, Max; Hokanson, Kelly; Devito, Kevin; Hopkinson, Chris; Petrone, Rich; Mendoza, Carl; Waddington, Mike

    2016-04-01

    Peatlands are a critically important global carbon reserve. There is increasing concern that such ecosystems are vulnerable to projected increases in wildfire severity under a changing climate. Severe fires may exceed peatland ecological resilience resulting in the long term degradation of this carbon store. Evaporation provides the primary mechanisms of water loss from such environments and can regulate the ecological stress in the initial years after wildfire. We examine variations in evaporation within burned peatlands after wildfire through small scale chamber and large scale remote sensing measurements. We show that near-surface water repellency limits peatland evaporation in these initial years post fire. Water repellent peat produced by the fire restricts the supply of water to the surface, reducing evaporation and providing a strong negative feedback to disturbance. This previously unidentified feedback operates at the landscape scale. High surface temperatures that result from large reductions in evaporation within water repellent peat are observed across the 60,000 ha burn scar three months after the wildfire. This promotes high water table positions at a landscape scale which limit the rate of peat decomposition and supports the post fire ecohydrological recovery of the peatlands. However, severe burns are shown to exceed this negative feedback response. Deep burns at the peatland margins remove the hydrophobic layer, increasing post fire evaporation and leaving the peatland vulnerable to drying and associated ecological shifts.

  14. Water repellency diminishes peatland evaporation after wildfire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kettridge, N.; Lukenbach, M.; Hokanson, K. J.; Devito, K. J.; Petrone, R. M.; Hopkinson, C.; Waddington, J. M.

    2015-12-01

    Peatlands are a critically important global carbon reserve. There is increasing concern that such ecosystems are vulnerable to projected increases in wildfire severity under a changing climate. Severe fires may exceed peatland ecological resilience resulting in the long term degradation of this carbon store. Evaporation provides the primary mechanisms of water loss from such environments and can regulate the ecological stress in the initial years after wildfire. We examine variations in evaporation within burned peatlands after wildfire through small scale chamber and large scale remote sensing measurements. We show that near-surface water repellency limits peatland evaporation in these initial years post fire. Water repellent peat produced by the fire restricts the supply of water to the surface, reducing evaporation and providing a strong negative feedback to disturbance. This previously unidentified feedback operates at the landscape scale. High surface temperatures that result from large reductions in evaporation within water repellent peat are observed across the 60,000 ha burn scar three months after the wildfire. This large scale reduction in evaporation promotes high water table positions at a landscape scale which limits the rate of peat decomposition and supports the post fire ecohydrological recovery of the peatlands. However, severe burns are shown to exceed this negative feedback response. Deep burns at the peatland margins remove the hydrophobic layer, increasing post fire evaporation and leaving the peatland vulnerable to drying and associated ecological shifts.

  15. A characterization methodology for post-wildfire flood hazard assessments

    SciTech Connect

    McLin, Stephen G.; Van Eeckhout, M. E.; Springer, E. P.; Lane, Leonard J.

    2001-01-01

    A combined GIS-HEC modeling application for floodplain analysis of pre- and post-burned watersheds is described. The burned study area is located on Pajarito Plateau near Los Alamos, New Mexico (USA), where the Cerro Grande Wildfire burned 17,353 ha (42,878 ac) in May 2000. This area is dominated by rugged mountains that are dissected by numerous steep canyons having both ephemeral and perennial channel reaches. Vegetation consists of pinon-juniper woodlands located between 1,829-2,134 m (6,000-7,000 ft) above mean sea level (m MSL), and Ponderosa pine stands between 2,134-3,048 m MSL (7,000-10,000 ft). Approximately seventeen percent of the burned area is located within Los Alamos National Laboratory, and the remainder is located in upstream or adjacent watersheds. Pre-burn floodplains were previously mapped in 1991-92 using early HEC models as part of the RCRA/HSWA permitting process. Numerous recording precipitation and stream gages have also been installed. These data provide essential information characterizing rainfall-runoff relationships before and after the fire. They are also being used to monitor spatial and temporal changes as forest recovery progresses. Post-burn changes in HEC-HMS predicted rainfall-runoff patterns are related to changes in watershed vegetation cover and hydrophobic soil conditions. Stream channel cross-sectional geometries were extracted from 0.3 m (1 ft) DEM data using ArcView GIS. Then floodpool topwidths, depths, and flow velocities were remapped using the HEC-RAS model. Finally, numerous surveyed channel sections were selectively made at crucial sites for model verification. Direct comparisons are made between alternative data acquisition and mapping techniques.

  16. Unsupervised Spatio-Temporal Data Mining Framework for Burned Area Mapping

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Boriah, Shyam (Inventor); Kumar, Vipin (Inventor); Mithal, Varun (Inventor); Khandelwal, Ankush (Inventor)

    2016-01-01

    A method reduces processing time required to identify locations burned by fire by receiving a feature value for each pixel in an image, each pixel representing a sub-area of a location. Pixels are then grouped based on similarities of the feature values to form candidate burn events. For each candidate burn event, a probability that the candidate burn event is a true burn event is determined based on at least one further feature value for each pixel in the candidate burn event. Candidate burn events that have a probability below a threshold are removed from further consideration as burn events to produce a set of remaining candidate burn events.

  17. Assessment of the vegetation cover in a burned area 22-years ago using remote sensing techniques and GIS analysis (Sierra de las Nieves, South of Spain).

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martínez-Murillo, Juan F.; Remond, Ricardo; Ruiz-Sinoga, José D.

    2015-04-01

    The study aim was to characterize the vegetation cover in a burned area 22-years ago considering the previous situation to wildfire in 1991 and the current one in 2013. The objectives were to: (i) compare the current and previous vegetation cover to widlfire; (ii) evaluate whether the current vegetation has recovered the previous cover to wildfire; and (iii) determine the spatial variability of vegetation recovery after 22-years since the wildfire. The study area is located in Sierra de las Nieves, South of Spain. It corresponds to an area affected by a wildfire in August 8th, 1991. The burned area was equal to 8156 ha. The burn severity was spatially very high. The main geographic features of the burned area are: mountainous topography (altitudes ranging from 250 m to 1500 m; slope gradient >25%; exposure mainly southfacing); igneous (peridotites), metamorphic (gneiss) and calcareous rocks (limestones); and predominant forest land use (Pinus pinaster sp. woodlands, 10%; pinus opened forest + shrubland, 40%; shrubland, 35%; and bare soil + grassland, 15%). Remote sensing techniques and GIS analysis has been applied to achieve the objectives. Landsat 5 and Landsat 8 images were used: July 13th, 1991 and July 1st, 2013, for the previous wildfire situation and 22-years after, respectively. The 1990 CORINE land cover was also considered to map 1991 land uses prior the wildfire. Likewise, the Andalucía Regional Government wildfire historic records were used to select the burned area and its geographical limit. 1991 and 2013 land cover map were obtained by means of object-oriented classifications. Also, NDVI and PVI1 vegetation indexes were calculated and mapped for both years. Finally, some images transformations and kernel density images were applied to determine the most recovered areas and to map the spatial concentration of bare soil and pine cover areas in 1991 and 2013, respectively. According to the results, the combination of remote sensing and GIS analysis let

  18. A 30-year chronosequence of burned areas in Arizona: effects of wildfires on vegetation in Sonoran Desert Tortoise (Gopherus morafkai) habitats

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Shryock, Daniel F.; Esque, Todd C.; Chen, Felicia C.

    2015-01-01

    Fire is widely regarded as a key evolutionary force in fire-prone ecosystems, with effects spanning multiple levels of organization, from species and functional group composition through landscape-scale vegetation structure, biomass, and diversity (Pausas and others, 2004; Bond and Keeley 2005; Pausas and Verdu, 2008). Ecosystems subjected to novel fire regimes may experience profound changes that are difficult to predict, including persistent losses of vegetation cover and diversity (McLaughlin and Bowers, 1982; Brown and Minnich, 1986; Brooks, 2012), losses to seed banks (Esque and others, 2010a), changes in demographic processes (Esque and others, 2004; DeFalco and others, 2010), increased erosion (Soulard and others, 2013), changes in nutrient availability (Esque and others, 2010b), increased dominance of invasive species (Esque and others, 2002; Brooks and others, 2004), and transitions to alternative community states (Davies and others, 2012). In the deserts of the Southwestern United States, fire size and frequency have increased substantially over the last several decades because of an invasive grass/fire feedback cycle (Schmid and Rogers, 1988; D’Antonio and Vitousek, 1992; Swantek and others, 1999; Brooks and Matchett, 2006; Esque and others, 2010a), in which invasive annual species are able to establish fuel loads capable of sustaining large-scale wildfires following years of high rainfall (Esque and Schwalbe, 2002). Native perennial vegetation is not well-adapted to fire in these environments, and widespread, physiognomically dominant species such as creosote bush (Larrea tridentata), Joshua tree (Yucca brevifolia), giant saguaro cactus (Carnegiea gigantea), and paloverde (Parkinsonia spp.) may be reduced or eliminated (Brown and Minnich, 1986; Esque and others, 2006; DeFalco and others, 2010), potentially affecting wildlife populations including the Sonoran and federally threatened Mojave Desert Tortoises (Gopherus morafkai and Gopherus agassizii

  19. Drainage networks after wildfire

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kinner, D.A.; Moody, J.A.

    2005-01-01

    Predicting runoff and erosion from watersheds burned by wildfires requires an understanding of the three-dimensional structure of both hillslope and channel drainage networks. We investigate the small-and large-scale structures of drainage networks using field studies and computer analysis of 30-m digital elevation model. Topologic variables were derived from a composite 30-m DEM, which included 14 order 6 watersheds within the Pikes Peak batholith. Both topologic and hydraulic variables were measured in the field in two smaller burned watersheds (3.7 and 7.0 hectares) located within one of the order 6 watersheds burned by the 1996 Buffalo Creek Fire in Central Colorado. Horton ratios of topologic variables (stream number, drainage area, stream length, and stream slope) for small-scale and large-scale watersheds are shown to scale geometrically with stream order (i.e., to be scale invariant). However, the ratios derived for the large-scale drainage networks could not be used to predict the rill and gully drainage network structure. Hydraulic variables (width, depth, cross-sectional area, and bed roughness) for small-scale drainage networks were found to be scale invariant across 3 to 4 stream orders. The relation between hydraulic radius and cross-sectional area is similar for rills and gullies, suggesting that their geometry can be treated similarly in hydraulic modeling. Additionally, the rills and gullies have relatively small width-to-depth ratios, implying sidewall friction may be important to the erosion and evolutionary process relative to main stem channels.

  20. Wildfire-related debris-flow generation through episodic progressive sediment-bulking processes, western USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cannon, S.H.; Gartner, J.E.; Parrett, C.; Parise, M.; ,

    2003-01-01

    Debris-flow initiation processes on hillslopes recently burned by wildfire differ from those generally recognized on unburned, vegetated hillslopes. These differences result from fire-induced changes in the hydrologic response to rainfall events. In this study, detailed field and aerial photographic mapping, observations, and measurements of debris-flow events from three sites in the western U.S. are used to describe and evaluate the process of episodic progressive sediment bulking of storm runoff that leads to the generation of post-wildfire debris flows. Our data demonstrate the effects of material credibility, sediment availability on hillslopes and in channels, the degree of channel confinement, the formation of continuous channel incision, and the upslope contributing area and its gradient on the generation of flows and the magnitude of the response are demonstrated. ?? 2003 Millpress.

  1. Greek Wildfires

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    Hot, dry weather has contributed to a string of fires that burned in Greece during the first two weeks of July 2000. Smoke from one of these fires is streaming across Greece and out into the Aegean Sea in this image taken July 13, 2000, by the Sea-viewing Wide Field of view Sensor (SeaWiFS). For more about SeaWiFS, visit the SeaWiFS home page. Provided by the SeaWiFS Project, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center, and ORBIMAGE

  2. Detecting Moorland Wildfire Scars and their Persistence in the Landscape using Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) in the Peak District National Park, UK

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Millin-chalabi, G. R.; McMorrow, J.; Agnew, C.

    2012-12-01

    The overall aim of this research is to assess the ability of SAR to detect moorland wildfire scars and their persistence in the landscape using the Peak District National Park (PDNP) in the UK as a case study. Spatially-robust data to monitor wildfire scar size and severity in UK moorlands is currently rare. Fires can burn deep into peat soils and contribute to the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and may also affect the water quality of nearby streams. Information on fire extent would be useful for conservation organisations such as Moors For The Future who are trying to preserve the delicate peatland environment. Knowing the size and location of fire scars would help the Fire and Rescue Service to plan future response to moorland fires. Fire scar boundaries can be mapped in the field using Global Positioning Systems (GPS), however this is labour intensive. Indeed in the PDNP wildfire scar mapping is conducted by park rangers which provides essential ground truth data for assessing against the SAR data. Therefore this particular area provides a unique opportunity for testing an alternative SAR technique for monitoring wildfire scars in the moorland landscape. Previous research shows that SAR has been successfully applied for wildfire scar detection in other types of environments such as boreal (Bourgeau-Chavez et al, 1997) and the tropics (Huang and Siegert, 2004). This research presents some of the first results of the project which tests the capability of ERS 2; ASAR (C-band) and PALSAR (L-band) data to detect several wildfire scars from 2003 - 2008 of various spatial scales and fire severity. Some of the key areas of interest the paper will explore are at Bleaklow and the Kinder plateau. The Bleaklow peat fire of 18th April 2003 was larger (7km2) and more severe than at Kinder, which burned between 26-29th May 2008 and covered an area of 10 ha. All the wildfire scars were GPS, mapped just after the fire event. Archival time-series SAR imagery was

  3. Mapping wildfire susceptibility in Southern California using live and dead fractions of vegetation derived from Multiple Endmember Spectral Mixture Analysis of MODIS imagery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schneider, P.; Roberts, D. A.

    2008-12-01

    Wildfire is a significant natural disturbance mechanism in Southern California. Assessing spatial patterns of wildfire susceptibility requires estimates of the live and dead fractions of vegetation. The Fire Potential Index (FPI), which is currently the only operationally computed fire susceptibility index incorporating remote sensing data, estimates such fractions using a relative greenness measure based on time series of vegetation index images. This contribution assesses the potential of Multiple Endmember Spectral Mixture Analysis (MESMA) for deriving such fractions from single MODIS images without the need for a long remote sensing time series, and investigates the applicability of such MESMA-derived fractions for mapping dynamic fire susceptibility in Southern California. Endmembers for MESMA were selected from a library of reference endmembers using Constrained Reference Endmember Selection (CRES), which uses field estimates of fractions to guide the selection process. Fraction images of green vegetation, non-photosynthetic vegetation, soil, and shade were then computed for all available 16-day MODIS composites between 2000 and 2006 using MESMA. Initial results indicate that MESMA of MODIS imagery is capable of providing reliable estimates of live and dead vegetation fraction. Validation against in situ observations in the Santa Ynez Mountains near Santa Barbara, California, shows that the average fraction error for two tested species was around 10%. Further validation of MODIS-derived fractions was performed against fractions from high-resolution hyperspectral data. It was shown that the fractions derived from data of both sensors correlate with R2 values greater than 0.95. MESMA-derived live and dead vegetation fractions were subsequently tested as a substitute to relative greenness in the FPI algorithm. FPI was computed for every day between 2000 and 2006 using the derived fractions. Model performance was then tested by extracting FPI values for

  4. Factors influencing fire behaviour in shrublands of different stand ages and the implications for using prescribed burning to reduce wildfire risk.

    PubMed

    Baeza, M J; De Luís, M; Raventós, J; Escarré, A

    2002-06-01

    Fire behaviour under experimental conditions is described in nine Mediterranean gorse shrublands ranging from 3-12 years of age with different fuel loads. Significant differences in the fire-line intensity, fuel load and rate of fire spread have been found to be related to the stage of development of the communities. Fire spread is correlated with fuel moisture using multiple regression techniques. Differences in fuel moisture between mature and young communities under moderate weather conditions have been found. The lower moisture content identified in the mature shrubland is due both to the decreasing moisture content of senescent shrubland in some species, mainly in live fractions of Ulex parviflorus Pour. fuel, and to a substantial increase in dead fuel fractions with low percentages of moisture content. The result is that the older the shrubland is, the greater will be the decrease in the total moisture content of the vegetation. In these moderate weather conditions, the fire intensity of the mature community was as high as the maximum intensity recommended for prescribed fires. This fact seems to indicate that, even under moderate conditions, prescribed burning as an alternative management tool in the mature shrubland must always take into account fuel control; on the other hand, this technique could be applied more easily when the shrubland is at an intermediate growth stage (4-5 years of age). Therefore, more frequent low-intensity prescribed fires are indicated to abate the risk of catastrophic fire.

  5. Hydrochemical Leaching of Wildfire Ash

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamann, H.

    2008-12-01

    A century of fire suppression, combined with recent droughts has provoked some of the worst wildfire seasons in the western US. Although wild and prescribed fires are known to supply nutrients to grassland, shrubland and forest ecosystems, when ash and combustion byproducts are leached into surface waters the nutrients and other materials can affect aquatic ecosystems and pose a considerable risk to water quality. This ash may be persistent for periods as short as a storm or snowmelt event or up to several years, as suggested by periodic increases in dissolved nutrients and suspended solids. Here I present results from field sampling and bench scale experiments that examine the rate of change and chemical quality of leachate from ash samples collected from two wildfires that burned in Colorado in 2003 and 2006. Bench scale- experiments suggest that the conductivity of ash leachate increases in a continuous and modelable manner. Stream grab samples collected in burned and unburned areas within two weeks of the 2006 Mato Vega fire suggest an initial increase in pH, and conductivity, as well as an increase in solutes including dissolved organic carbon and manganese; however the results were spatially variable.

  6. Restoring forest structure and process stabilizes forest carbon in wildfire-prone southwestern ponderosa pine forests.

    PubMed

    Hurteau, Matthew D; Liang, Shuang; Martin, Katherine L; North, Malcolm P; Koch, George W; Hungate, Bruce A

    2016-03-01

    Changing climate and a legacy of fire-exclusion have increased the probability of high-severity wildfire, leading to an increased risk of forest carbon loss in ponderosa pine forests in the southwestern USA. Efforts to reduce high-severity fire risk through forest thinning and prescribed burning require both the removal and emission of carbon from these forests, and any potential carbon benefits from treatment may depend on the occurrence of wildfire. We sought to determine how forest treatments alter the effects of stochastic wildfire events on the forest carbon balance. We modeled three treatments (control, thin-only, and thin and burn) with and without the occurrence of wildfire. We evaluated how two different probabilities of wildfire occurrence, 1% and 2% per year, might alter the carbon balance of treatments. In the absence of wildfire, we found that thinning and burning treatments initially reduced total ecosystem carbon (TEC) and increased net ecosystem carbon balance (NECB). In the presence of wildfire, the thin and burn treatment TEC surpassed that of the control in year 40 at 2%/yr wildfire probability, and in year 51 at 1%/yr wildfire probability. NECB in the presence of wildfire showed a similar response to the no-wildfire scenarios: both thin-only and thin and burn treatments increased the C sink. Treatments increased TEC by reducing both mean wildfire severity and its variability. While the carbon balance of treatments may differ in more productive forest types, the carbon balance benefits from restoring forest structure and fire in southwestern ponderosa pine forests are clear.

  7. Wildfire contribution to world-wide desertification.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neary, D.; Wittenberg, L.; Bautista, S.; Ffolliott, P.

    2009-04-01

    Wildfire is a natural phenomenon that began with the development of terrestrial vegetation in a lightning-filled atmosphere. Sediments from the Carboniferous Period (307-359 million years before the present) contain evidence of charcoal from post-fire ash slurry flows. As human populations developed in the Pleistocene and Holocene epochs, mankind transformed fire into one of its oldest tools. Human and natural ignited fires from lightning altered and steered the trajectories of ecosystem development in most parts of the world. Humans are now the primary source of forest and grass fire ignitions throughout the world. As human populations have increased and industrialized in the past two centuries, fire ignitions and burned areas have increased due to both sheer numbers of people and anthropogenic changes in the global climate. Recent scientific findings have bolstered the hypothesis that climate change is resulting in fire seasons starting earlier, lasting longer, burning greater areas, and being more severe Computer models point to the Western U.S., Mediterranean nations and Brazil as "hot spots" that will get extremes at their worst. The climatic change to drier and warmer conditions has the potential to aggravate wildfire conditions, resulting in burning over longer seasons, larger areas of vegetation conflagration, and higher fire severities. Wildfire is now driving desertification in some of the forest lands in the western United States. The areas of wildfire in the Southwest USA have increased dramatically in the past two decades from <10,000 ha yr-1 in the early 20th Century to over 230,000 ha yr-1 in the first decade of the 21st Century. Individual wildfires are now larger and produce higher severity burns than in the past. A combination of natural drought, climate change, excessive fuel loads, and increased ignition sources have produced the perfect conditions for fire-induced desertification. Portugal suffered the worst and second worst wildfire seasons in

  8. Pattern and process of prescribed fires influence effectiveness at reducing wildfire severity in dry coniferous forests

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Arkle, Robert S.; Pilliod, David S.; Welty, Justin L.

    2012-01-01

    We examined the effects of three early season (spring) prescribed fires on burn severity patterns of summer wildfires that occurred 1–3 years post-treatment in a mixed conifer forest in central Idaho. Wildfire and prescribed fire burn severities were estimated as the difference in normalized burn ratio (dNBR) using Landsat imagery. We used GIS derived vegetation, topography, and treatment variables to generate models predicting the wildfire burn severity of 1286–5500 30-m pixels within and around treated areas. We found that wildfire severity was significantly lower in treated areas than in untreated areas and significantly lower than the potential wildfire severity of the treated areas had treatments not been implemented. At the pixel level, wildfire severity was best predicted by an interaction between prescribed fire severity, topographic moisture, heat load, and pre-fire vegetation volume. Prescribed fire severity and vegetation volume were the most influential predictors. Prescribed fire severity, and its influence on wildfire severity, was highest in relatively warm and dry locations, which were able to burn under spring conditions. In contrast, wildfire severity peaked in cooler, more mesic locations that dried later in the summer and supported greater vegetation volume. We found considerable evidence that prescribed fires have landscape-level influences within treatment boundaries; most notable was an interaction between distance from the prescribed fire perimeter and distance from treated patch edges, which explained up to 66% of the variation in wildfire severity. Early season prescribed fires may not directly target the locations most at risk of high severity wildfire, but proximity of these areas to treated patches and the discontinuity of fuels following treatment may influence wildfire severity and explain how even low severity treatments can be effective management tools in fire-prone landscapes.

  9. Green Science: Wildfires

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Palliser, Janna

    2012-01-01

    Every summer, fires rage in different areas of the western United States. They are often massive, out of control, and extremely destructive. How do these fires begin and how are they controlled? What are the overall impacts of a wildfire? Are there any benefits of a wildfire? These questions will be addressed in this article. (Contains 3 online…

  10. Stormwater contaminant loading following southern California wildfires.

    PubMed

    Stein, Eric D; Brown, Jeffrey S; Hogue, Terri S; Burke, Megan P; Kinoshita, Alicia

    2012-11-01

    Contaminant loading associated with stormwater runoff from recently burned areas is poorly understood, despite the fact that it has the potential to affect downstream water quality. The goal of the present study is to assess regional patterns of runoff and contaminant loading from wildfires in urban fringe areas of southern California. Postfire stormwater runoff was sampled from five wildfires that each burned between 115 and 658 km(2) of natural open space between 2003 and 2009. Between two and five storm events were sampled per site over the first one to two years following the fires for basic constituents, metals, nutrients, total suspended solids, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Results were compared to data from 16 unburned natural areas and six developed sites. Mean copper, lead, and zinc flux (kg/km(2)) were between 112- and 736-fold higher from burned catchments and total phosphorus was up to 921-fold higher compared to unburned natural areas. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon flux was four times greater from burned areas than from adjacent urban areas. Ash fallout on nearby unburned watersheds also resulted in a threefold increase in metals and PAHs. Attenuation of elevated concentration and flux values appears to be driven mainly by rainfall magnitude. Contaminant loading from burned landscapes has the potential to be a substantial contribution to the total annual load to downstream areas in the first several years following fires.

  11. Using high spatial resolution satellite imagery to map forest burn severity across spatial scales in a Pine Barrens ecosystem

    DOE PAGES

    Meng, Ran; Wu, Jin; Schwager, Kathy L.; ...

    2017-01-21

    As a primary disturbance agent, fire significantly influences local processes and services of forest ecosystems. Although a variety of remote sensing based approaches have been developed and applied to Landsat mission imagery to infer burn severity at 30 m spatial resolution, forest burn severity have still been seldom assessed at fine spatial scales (≤ 5 m) from very-high-resolution (VHR) data. Here we assessed a 432 ha forest fire that occurred in April 2012 on Long Island, New York, within the Pine Barrens region, a unique but imperiled fire-dependent ecosystem in the northeastern United States. The mapping of forest burn severitymore » was explored here at fine spatial scales, for the first time using remotely sensed spectral indices and a set of Multiple Endmember Spectral Mixture Analysis (MESMA) fraction images from bi-temporal — pre- and post-fire event — WorldView-2 (WV-2) imagery at 2 m spatial resolution. We first evaluated our approach using 1 m by 1 m validation points at the sub-crown scale per severity class (i.e. unburned, low, moderate, and high severity) from the post-fire 0.10 m color aerial ortho-photos; then, we validated the burn severity mapping of geo-referenced dominant tree crowns (crown scale) and 15 m by 15 m fixed-area plots (inter-crown scale) with the post-fire 0.10 m aerial ortho-photos and measured crown information of twenty forest inventory plots. Our approach can accurately assess forest burn severity at the sub-crown (overall accuracy is 84% with a Kappa value of 0.77), crown (overall accuracy is 82% with a Kappa value of 0.76), and inter-crown scales (89% of the variation in estimated burn severity ratings (i.e. Geo-Composite Burn Index (CBI)). Lastly, this work highlights that forest burn severity mapping from VHR data can capture heterogeneous fire patterns at fine spatial scales over the large spatial extents. This is important since most ecological processes associated with fire effects vary at the < 30 m scale and

  12. The worldwide "wildfire" problem.

    PubMed

    Gill, A Malcolm; Stephens, Scott L; Cary, Geoffrey J

    2013-03-01

    The worldwide "wildfire" problem is headlined by the loss of human lives and homes, but it applies generally to any adverse effects of unplanned fires, as events or regimes, on a wide range of environmental, social, and economic assets. The problem is complex and contingent, requiring continual attention to the changing circumstances of stakeholders, landscapes, and ecosystems; it occurs at a variety of temporal and spatial scales. Minimizing adverse outcomes involves controlling fires and fire regimes, increasing the resistance of assets to fires, locating or relocating assets away from the path of fires, and, as a probability of adverse impacts often remains, assisting recovery in the short-term while promoting the adaptation of societies in the long-term. There are short- and long-term aspects to each aspect of minimization. Controlling fires and fire regimes may involve fire suppression and fuel treatments such as prescribed burning or non-fire treatments but also addresses issues associated with unwanted fire starts like arson. Increasing the resistance of assets can mean addressing the design and construction materials of a house or the use of personal protective equipment. Locating or relocating assets can mean leaving an area about to be impacted by fire or choosing a suitable place to live; it can also mean the planning of land use. Assisting recovery and promoting adaptation can involve insuring assets and sharing responsibility for preparedness for an event. There is no single, simple, solution. Perverse outcomes can occur. The number of minimizing techniques used, and the breadth and depth of their application, depends on the geographic mix of asset types. Premises for policy consideration are presented.

  13. Wireless sensors for wildfire monitoring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doolin, David M.; Sitar, Nicholas

    2005-05-01

    We describe the design of a system for wildfire monitoring incorporating wireless sensors, and report results from field testing during prescribed test burns near San Francisco, California. The system is composed of environmental sensors collecting temperature, relative humidity and barometric pressure with an on-board GPS unit attached to a wireless, networked mote. The motes communicate with a base station, which communicates the collected data to software running on a database server. The data can be accessed using a browser-based web application or any other application capable of communicating with the database server. Performance of the monitoring system during two prescribed burns at Pinole Point Regional Park (Contra Costa County, California, near San Francisco) is promising. Sensors within the burn zone recorded the passage of the flame front before being scorched, with temperature increasing, and barometric pressure and humidity decreasing as the flame front advanced. Temperature gradients up to 5 C per second were recorded. The data also show that the temperature slightly decreases and the relative humidity slightly increases from ambient values immediately preceding the flame front, indicating that locally significant weather conditions develop even during relatively cool, slow moving grass fires. The maximum temperature recorded was 95 C, the minimum relative humidity 9%, and barometric pressure dropped by as much as 25 mbar.

  14. Geographic mapping as a tool for identifying communities at high risk of fire and burn injuries in children.

    PubMed

    Poulos, Roslyn G; Hayen, Andrew; Chong, Shanley S S; Finch, Caroline F

    2009-05-01

    Burns are a significant cause of morbidity and mortality in children. Although industrialized countries have achieved significant declines in deaths and hospitalizations for these injuries in recent decades, the benefits have not been shared equally by children across all socioeconomic groups. We used Bayesian methods to map posterior expected relative risks, as an estimate of smoothed hospital separation ratios for fire and burns in children, across local government areas in New South Wales, Australia. The geographic pattern of relative risk varied by age group; higher than average risks were observed for children residing in rural and remote areas, as well as in scattered local government areas closer to the coast and in some metropolitan regions. Mapping the occurrence of injury gives injury practitioners the opportunity to identify high risk communities for further investigation of risk factors and implementation of targeted interventions within a defined area.

  15. Analyzing seasonal patterns of wildfire exposure factors in Sardinia, Italy.

    PubMed

    Salis, Michele; Ager, Alan A; Alcasena, Fermin J; Arca, Bachisio; Finney, Mark A; Pellizzaro, Grazia; Spano, Donatella

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, we applied landscape scale wildfire simulation modeling to explore the spatiotemporal patterns of wildfire likelihood and intensity in the island of Sardinia (Italy). We also performed wildfire exposure analysis for selected highly valued resources on the island to identify areas characterized by high risk. We observed substantial variation in burn probability, fire size, and flame length among time periods within the fire season, which starts in early June and ends in late September. Peak burn probability and flame length were observed in late July. We found that patterns of wildfire likelihood and intensity were mainly related to spatiotemporal variation in ignition locations, fuel moisture, and wind vectors. Our modeling approach allowed consideration of historical patterns of winds, ignition locations, and live and dead fuel moisture on fire exposure factors. The methodology proposed can be useful for analyzing potential wildfire risk and effects at landscape scale, evaluating historical changes and future trends in wildfire exposure, as well as for addressing and informing fuel management and risk mitigation issues.

  16. Wildfire Disasters and Nursing.

    PubMed

    Hanes, Patricia Frohock

    2016-12-01

    Multiple factors contribute to wildfires in California and other regions: drought, winds, climate change, and spreading urbanization. Little has been done to study the multiple roles of nurses related to wildfire disasters. Major nursing organizations support disaster education for nurses. It is essential for nurses to recognize their roles in each phase of the disaster cycle: mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery. Skills learned in the US federal all-hazards approach to disasters can then be adapted to more specific disasters, such as wildfires, and issues affecting health care. Nursing has an important role in each phase of the disaster cycle.

  17. Fire and Fish: Using Radiocarbon And Stratigraphy To Discern The Impact Of Wildfire On Fish Metapopulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaffrath, K. R.; Finch, C.; Belmont, P.; Budy, P.

    2015-12-01

    Wildfires have profound and variable impacts on erosion, channel morphology, and aquatic habitat. Previous research has quantified post-fire geomorphic response on event and millennial timescales. While these studies have informed our understanding of post-fire geomorphic response during the Holocene, we have yet to fully understand the variability of post-wildfire geomorphic response and how it might change in response to changing climate. Response of aquatic biota is just as variable as post-wildfire response yet we know very little about effects on metapopulations and how management decisions affect aquatic populations. Barriers to movement are installed to isolate native fish populations and prescribed fire and thinning are used to try to reduce future wildfire severity and extent. In order to improve understanding of the implications of management decisions, we evaluated geomorphic response and synchronicity of wildfires over the Holocene relative to the impact to the metapopulation of Bonneville cutthroat trout from a recent wildfire. The Twitchell Canyon fire burned 45,000 acres near Beaver, UT in July 2010. Over 30% of the area burned at high severity, which included two major headwater streams that sustained a trout population. In summer 2011, monsoonal thunderstorms caused massive debris flows and sheetflow erosion that altered channel morphology and aquatic habitat in the burned area. A previously robust, non-native trout fishery was nearly extirpated as a result of the geomorphic response to the wildfire. We used radiocarbon dating of burned material to determine how often headwater streams burned synchronously over the Holocene. Radiocarbon dates are associated with field observations of stratigraphy in order to infer geomorphic response to historic wildfires. Thirty samples were collected from sediment layers in 10 alluvial fans distributed among three watersheds (two burned and one unburned in the 2010 fire). Preliminary results suggest that we

  18. Wildfire Prevention Strategies.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Wildlife Coordinating Group, Boise, ID.

    This document provides information and guidance on wildfire prevention strategies. Chapters include: (1) "Introduction"; (2) "How to Use this Guide"; (3) "Fire Cause Classification"; (4) "Relative Effectiveness"; (5) "Degree of Difficulty"; (6) "Intervention Techniques"; (7)…

  19. Case study: Wildfire visualization

    SciTech Connect

    Ahrens, J.; McCormick, P.; Bossert, J.; Reisner, J.; Winterkamp, J.

    1997-11-01

    The ability to forecast the progress of crisis events would significantly reduce human suffering and loss of life, the destruction of property, and expenditures for assessment and recovery. Los Alamos National Laboratory has established a scientific thrust in crisis forecasting to address this national challenge. In the initial phase of this project, scientists at Los Alamos are developing computer models to predict the spread of a wildfire. Visualization of the results of the wildfire simulation will be used by scientists to assess the quality of the simulation and eventually by fire personnel as a visual forecast of the wildfire`s evolution. The fire personnel and scientists want the visualization to look as realistic as possible without compromising scientific accuracy. This paper describes how the visualization was created, analyzes the tools and approach that was used, and suggests directions for future work and research.

  20. Impacts of Wildfire on Throughfall and Stemflow Precipitation Chemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    White, A. M.; McIntosh, J. C.; Meixner, T.; Brooks, P. D.; Chorover, J.

    2014-12-01

    The occurrence of large, stand replacing wildfires is more frequent in the western United States now than ever before. The loss of canopy cover due to wildfire drastically modifies landscapes and alters ecosystems as high intensity burns replace canopies with charred branches and trunks, change soil composition and erosion processes, and affect hydrologic flow paths and water chemistry. Precipitation that is not intercepted by the forest canopy makes its way to the forest floor as throughfall or stemflow. Tracking variations in the amount and chemistry of precipitation that interacts with burned versus unburned forest stands, as well as open precipitation, will help to quantify changes in hydrologic routing and catchment water chemistry caused by wildfire. This study investigates the effects of fire on the volume and chemical composition of precipitation diverted to the forest floor as stemflow and throughfall by observing the impact of the June 2013 Thompson Ridge wildfire in the Jemez River Basin Critical Zone Observatory field site in the Valles Caldera National Preserve of New Mexico. Throughfall and stemflow collectors were installed beneath both burned and unburned canopies and open areas in two catchments impacted by the Thompson Ridge fire. Initial results of field parameters, including electrical conductivity, pH and volume of precipitation collected from both burned and unburned sites, show variations across collector type (stemflow, throughfall and open precipitation), site location as the two catchments differ in aspect and gradient, and burn severity. Throughfall, stemflow and open precipitation samples were analyzed for trace metals, major cations, anions, nutrients and organic matter to determine how fire affects the chemical composition of the precipitation that interacts with burned canopies. This study is one of the first to quantify the relationship between wildfire and the chemistry and flux of stemflow and throughfall in conjunction with a full

  1. Update on the effects of a sierran wildfire on surface runoff water quality.

    PubMed

    Miller, W W; Johnson, D W; Gergans, N; Carroll-Moore, E M; Walker, R F; Cody, T L; Wone, B

    2013-07-01

    Wildfire has been shown to increase the short-term (1-3 yr) mobilization of mineral N and P in forest ecosystems of the Sierra Nevada Mountains and Lake Tahoe Basin. The ensuing effects on tributary and lake water quality are uncertain. The purpose of this investigation was to assess the impacts on runoff water quality over an intermediate time frame of 5 yr (2002-2007) after a wildfire event. Our design included fixed plots randomly placed within burned and unburned areas. Because each plot was sampled repeatedly during the study, we treated plots as repeated random effects in the analysis. We used a mixed model approach to analyze nutrient runoff concentrations and load for NH-N, NON and P in phosphate form (designated as ortho P or PO-P) where treatment (unburned vs. burned), time (pre-wildfire, post-wildfire year 1, year 2, etc.), and their interaction were fixed effects. Concentrations and loads of mineral N and P were higher in runoff from the burned areas immediately after wildfire. Because high water years may also contribute to higher runoff nutrient concentrations and loading, a wildfire followed by a high water year within the first season after a wildfire would likely have a much greater impact on runoff (and hence tributary) water quality than a wildfire followed by a low runoff water year.

  2. High-Resolution Mapping of Biomass Burning Emissions in Three Tropical Regions.

    PubMed

    Shi, Yusheng; Matsunaga, Tsuneo; Yamaguchi, Yasushi

    2015-09-15

    Biomass burning in tropical regions plays a significant role in atmospheric pollution and climate change. This study quantified a comprehensive monthly biomass burning emissions inventory with 1 km high spatial resolution, which included the burning of vegetation, human waste, and fuelwood for 2010 in three tropical regions. The estimations were based on the available burned area product MCD64A1 and statistical data. The total emissions of all gases and aerosols were 17382 Tg of CO2, 719 Tg of CO, 30 Tg of CH4, 29 Tg of NOx, 114 Tg of NMOC (nonmethane organic compounds), 7 Tg of SO2, 10 Tg of NH3, 79 Tg of PM2.5 (particulate matter), 45 Tg of OC (organic carbon), and 6 Tg of BC (black carbon). Taking CO as an example, vegetation burning accounted for 74% (530 Tg) of the total CO emissions, followed by fuelwood combustion and human waste burning. Africa was the biggest emitter (440 Tg), larger than Central and South America (113 Tg) and South and Southeast Asia (166 Tg). We also noticed that the dominant fire types in vegetation burning of these three regions were woody savanna/shrubland, savanna/grassland, and forest, respectively. Although there were some slight overestimations, our results are supported by comparisons with previously published data.

  3. Wildfire effects on carbon stocks and emissions in fuels treated forests (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    North, M.; Hurteau, M.

    2010-12-01

    The large carbon stores of many of the worlds’ forests are prone to reversal from wildfire. Fuels treatments can reduce wildfire emissions but at an immediate carbon reduction cost. Comparing these tradeoffs in forest burned by wildfire, we found treatments reduced wildfire emissions by 58% but total carbon loss, including biomass removed, was higher than in untreated forest. However with only 3% of trees alive, untreated forests have more than 70% of their carbon in decomposing stocks likely making them a carbon source for several decades. In wildfire burned forest, fuels treatments have a higher immediate carbon loss ‘cost’, but a significant long-term benefit in avoided emissions from decomposition and reductions in carbon storage.

  4. Wildfires threaten mercury stocks in northern soils

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Turetsky, M.R.; Harden, J.W.; Friedli, H.R.; Flannigan, M.; Payne, N.; Crock, J.; Radke, L.

    2006-01-01

    With climate change rapidly affecting northern forests and wetlands, mercury reserves once protected in cold, wet soils are being exposed to burning, likely triggering large releases of mercury to the atmosphere. We quantify organic soil mercury stocks and burn areas across western, boreal Canada for use in fire emission models that explore controls of burn area, consumption severity, and fuel loading on atmospheric mercury emissions. Though renowned as hotspots for the accumulation of mercury and its transformation to the toxic methylmercury, boreal wetlands might soon transition to hotspots for atmospheric mercury emissions. Estimates of circumboreal mercury emissions from this study are 15-fold greater than estimates that do not account for mercury stored in peat soils. Ongoing and projected increases in boreal wildfire activity due to climate change will increase atmospheric mercury emissions, contributing to the anthropogenic alteration of the global mercury cycle and exacerbating mercury toxicities for northern food chains. Copyright 2006 by the American Geophysical Union.

  5. Wildfires Rage in Southern California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    Large plumes of smoke rising from devastating wildfires burning near Los Angeles and San Diego on Sunday, October 26, 2003, are highlighted in this set of images from the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR). These images include a natural color view from MISR's nadir camera (left) and an automated stereo height retrieval (right). The tops of the smoke plumes range in altitude from 500 - 3000 meters, and the stereo retrieval clearly differentiates the smoke from patches of high-altitude cirrus. Plumes are apparent from fires burning near the California-Mexico border, San Diego, Camp Pendleton, the foothills of the San Bernardino Mountains, and in and around Simi Valley. The majority of the smoke is coming from the fires near San Diego and the San Bernardino Mountains.

    The Multiangle Imaging Spectro Radiometer observes the daylit Earth continuously and every 9 days views the entire globe between 82o north and 82o south latitude. These data products were generated from a portion of the imagery acquired during Terra orbit 20510. The panels cover an area of 329 kilometers x 543 kilometers, and utilize data from blocks 62 to 66 within World Reference System-2 path 40.

    MISR was built and is managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA, for NASA's Office of Earth Science, Washington, DC. The Terra satellite is managed by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD. JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology.

  6. Atlas of climatic controls of wildfire in the western United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hostetler, S.W.; Bartlein, P.J.; Holman, J.O.

    2006-01-01

    Wildfire behavior depends on several factors including ecologic characteristics, near-term and antecedent climatic conditions,fuel availability and moisture level, weather, and sources of ignition (lightning or human). The variability and interplay of these factors over many spatial and temporal scales present an ongoing challenge to our ability to forecast a given wildfire season. Here we focus on one aspect of wildfire in the western US through a retrospective analysis of wildfire (starts and area burned) and climate over monthly time scales. We consider prefire conditions up to a year preceding fire outbreaks. For our analysis, we used daily and monthly wildfire records and a combination of observed and model-simulated atmospheric and surface climate data. The focus of this report is on monthly wildfire and climate for the period 1980-2000. Although a longer fire record is desirable, the 21-year record is the longest currently available and it is sufficient for the purpose of a first-order regional analysis. We present the main results in the form of a wildfire-climate atlas for 8 subregions of the West that can be used by resource managers to assess current wildfire conditions relative to high, normal, and low fire years in the historical record. Our results clearly demonstrate the link between wildfire conditions and a small set of climatic variables, and our methodology is a framework for providing near-real-time assessments of current wildfire conditions in the West.

  7. Joint Use of Sentinel-1 and Landsat-8 data for Burned Areas Mapping: the Case of the Sardinia Island, Italy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pepe, Antonio; Azar, Ramin; Calò, Fabiana; Stroppiana, Daniela; Brivio, Pietro Alessandro; Imperatore, Pasquale

    2016-04-01

    Fires widely affect Mediterranean regions, causing severe threats to human lives and damages to natural environments. The socio-economic impacts of fires on the affected local communities are significant, indeed, the activation of prevention measures and the extinguishment of fires and reclamation of the pre-fire conditions are very expensive. Moreover, fires have also global impacts: they affect global warming and climate changes due to gas and aerosol emissions to atmosphere. In such a context, fire scars mapping and monitoring are fundamental tasks for a sustainable management of natural resources and for the prevention/mitigation of fire risk. With this respect, remotely sensed data offer the opportunity for a regional-up-to-global scale monitoring of areas prone to fires, on a cost-effective and regular basis. In this work, the potential of a joint use of Sentinel-1A (C-band) Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) and Landsat-8 Operational Land Imager (OLI) data for detecting burned areas is investigated. The experimental analyses are conducted by focusing on Sardinia Island, which is one of the Italian regions most affected by fire events during summer. Our analysis shows that the capability of monitoring burned areas in the Mediterranean environment can be improved by exploiting information embedded in OLI multispectral bands in conjunction with multi-temporal dual-polarized SAR data. Indeed, limitations experienced in analyses based on the use of only optical data (e.g., cloud cover, spectral overlap/confusion of burned areas with dark soils, water surfaces and shaded regions) may be overcome by using SAR data, owing to the insensitiveness to sunlight-illumination conditions and the cloud-penetrating capability of microwave radiation. Results prove the effectiveness of an integrated approach based on the combination of optical and microwave imagery for the monitoring and mapping of burned areas in vegetated regions.

  8. County-level analysis of the impact of temperature and population increases on California wildfire data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Baltar, M.; Keeley, Jon E.; Schoenberg, F.P.

    2013-01-01

    The extent to which the apparent increase in wildfire incidence and burn area in California from 1990 to 2006 is affected by population and temperature increases is examined. Using generalized linear models with random effects, we focus on the estimated impacts of increases in mean daily temperatures and populations in different counties on wildfire in those counties, after essentially controlling for the overall differences between counties in their overall mean temperatures and populations. We find that temperature increase appears to have a significant positive impact on both total burn area and number of observed wildfires. Population growth appears to have a much less pronounced impact on total burn area than do annual temperature increases, and population growth appears to be negatively correlated with the total number of observed wildfires. These effects are especially pronounced in the winter season and in Southern California counties.

  9. Wildfire exposure and fuel management on western US national forests.

    PubMed

    Ager, Alan A; Day, Michelle A; McHugh, Charles W; Short, Karen; Gilbertson-Day, Julie; Finney, Mark A; Calkin, David E

    2014-12-01

    Substantial investments in fuel management activities on national forests in the western US are part of a national strategy to reduce human and ecological losses from catastrophic wildfire and create fire resilient landscapes. Prioritizing these investments within and among national forests remains a challenge, partly because a comprehensive assessment that establishes the current wildfire risk and exposure does not exist, making it difficult to identify national priorities and target specific areas for fuel management. To gain a broader understanding of wildfire exposure in the national forest system, we analyzed an array of simulated and empirical data on wildfire activity and fuel treatment investments on the 82 western US national forests. We first summarized recent fire data to examine variation among the Forests in ignition frequency and burned area in relation to investments in fuel reduction treatments. We then used simulation modeling to analyze fine-scale spatial variation in burn probability and intensity. We also estimated the probability of a mega-fire event on each of the Forests, and the transmission of fires ignited on national forests to the surrounding urban interface. The analysis showed a good correspondence between recent area burned and predictions from the simulation models. The modeling also illustrated the magnitude of the variation in both burn probability and intensity among and within Forests. Simulated burn probabilities in most instances were lower than historical, reflecting fire exclusion on many national forests. Simulated wildfire transmission from national forests to the urban interface was highly variable among the Forests. We discuss how the results of the study can be used to prioritize investments in hazardous fuel reduction within a comprehensive multi-scale risk management framework.

  10. Improving Long-term Post-wildfire hydrologic simulations using ParFlow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lopez, S. R.; Kinoshita, A. M.

    2015-12-01

    Wildfires alter the natural hydrologic processes within a watershed. After vegetation is burned, the combustion of organic material and debris settles into the soil creating a hydrophobic layer beneath the soil surface with varying degree of thickness and depth. Vegetation regrowth rates vary as a function of radiative exposure, burn severity, and precipitation patterns. Hydrologic models used by the Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) teams use input data and model calibration constraints that are generally either one-dimensional, empirically-based models, or two-dimensional, conceptually-based models with lumped parameter distributions. These models estimate runoff measurements at the watershed outlet; however, do not provide a distributed hydrologic simulation at each point within the watershed. This work uses ParFlow, a three-dimensional, distributed hydrologic model to (1) correlate burn severity with hydrophobicity, (2) evaluate vegetation recovery rate on water components, and (3) improve flood prediction for managers to help with resource allocation and management operations in burned watersheds. ParFlow is applied to Devil Canyon (43 km2) in San Bernardino, California, which was 97% burned in the 2003 Old Fire. The model set-up uses a 30m-cell size resolution over a 6.7 km by 6.4 km lateral extent. The subsurface reaches 30 m and is assigned a variable cell thickness. Variable subsurface thickness allows users to explicitly consider the degree of recovery throughout the stages of regrowth. Burn severity maps from remotely sensed imagery are used to assign initial hydrophobic layer parameters and thickness. Vegetation regrowth is represented with satellite an Enhanced Vegetation Index. Pre and post-fire hydrologic response is evaluated using runoff measurements at the watershed outlet, and using water component (overland flow, lateral flow, baseflow) measurements.

  11. Risk analysis procedure for post-wildfire natural hazards in British Columbia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jordan, Peter

    2010-05-01

    Following a severe wildfire season in 2003, and several subsequent damaging debris flow and flood events, the British Columbia Forest Service developed a procedure for analysing risks to public safety and infrastructure from such events. At the same time, the Forest Service undertook a research program to determine the extent of post-wildfire hazards, and examine the hydrologic and geomorphic processes contributing to the hazards. The risk analysis procedure follows the Canadian Standards Association decision-making framework for risk management (which in turn is based on international standards). This has several steps: identification of risk, risk analysis and estimation, evaluation of risk tolerability, developing control or mitigation strategies, and acting on these strategies. The Forest Service procedure deals only with the first two steps. The results are passed on to authorities such as the Provincial Emergency Program and local government, who are responsible for evaluating risks, warning residents, and applying mitigation strategies if appropriate. The objective of the procedure is to identify and analyse risks to public safety and infrastructure. The procedure is loosely based on the BAER (burned area emergency response) program in the USA, with some important differences. Our procedure focuses on identifying risks and warning affected parties, not on mitigation activities such as broadcast erosion control measures. Partly this is due to limited staff and financial resources. Also, our procedure is not multi-agency, but is limited to wildfires on provincial forest land; in British Columbia about 95% of forest land is in the publicly-owned provincial forest. Each fire season, wildfires are screened by size and proximity to values at risk such as populated areas. For selected fires, when the fire is largely contained, the procedure begins with an aerial reconnaissance of the fire, and photography with a hand-held camera, which can be used to make a

  12. Wildfire Perception and Community Change

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gordon, Jason S.; Matarrita-Cascante, David; Stedman, Richard C.; Luloff, A. E.

    2010-01-01

    Given increasing political and financial commitments to wildfire preparedness, risk policy demands that risk identification, assessment, and mitigation activities are balanced among diverse resident groups. Essential for this is the understanding of residents' perceptions of wildfire risks. This study compares wildfire-risk perceptions of…

  13. Wildfires in Chile: A review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Úbeda, Xavier; Sarricolea, Pablo

    2016-11-01

    This paper reviews the literature examining the wildfire phenomenon in Chile. Since ancient times, Chile's wildfires have shaped the country's landscape, but today, as in many other parts of the world, the fire regime - pattern, frequency and intensity - has grown at an alarming rate. In 2014, > 8000 fires were responsible for burning c. 130,000 ha, making it the worst year in Chile's recent history. The reasons for this increase appear to be the increment in the area planted with flammable species; the rejection of these landscape modifications on the part of local communities that target these plantations in arson attacks; and, the adoption of intensive forest management practices resulting in the accumulation of a high fuel load. These trends have left many native species in a precarious situation and forest plantation companies under considerable financial pressure. An additional problem is posed by fires at the wildland urban interface (WUI), threatening those inhabitants that live in Chile's most heavily populated cities. The prevalence of natural fires in Chile; the relationship between certain plant species and fire in terms of seed germination strategies and plant adaptation; the relationship between fire and invasive species; and, the need for fire prevention systems and territorial plans that include fire risk assessments are some of the key aspects discussed in this article. Several of the questions raised will require further research, including just how fire-dependent the ecosystems in Chile are, how the forest at the WUI can be better managed to prevent human and material damage, and how best to address the social controversy that pits the Mapuche population against the timber companies.

  14. Assessing Climate Change Impacts on Wildfire Exposure in Mediterranean Areas.

    PubMed

    Lozano, Olga M; Salis, Michele; Ager, Alan A; Arca, Bachisio; Alcasena, Fermin J; Monteiro, Antonio T; Finney, Mark A; Del Giudice, Liliana; Scoccimarro, Enrico; Spano, Donatella

    2016-12-20

    We used simulation modeling to assess potential climate change impacts on wildfire exposure in Italy and Corsica (France). Weather data were obtained from a regional climate model for the period 1981-2070 using the IPCC A1B emissions scenario. Wildfire simulations were performed with the minimum travel time fire spread algorithm using predicted fuel moisture, wind speed, and wind direction to simulate expected changes in weather for three climatic periods (1981-2010, 2011-2040, and 2041-2070). Overall, the wildfire simulations showed very slight changes in flame length, while other outputs such as burn probability and fire size increased significantly in the second future period (2041-2070), especially in the southern portion of the study area. The projected changes fuel moisture could result in a lengthening of the fire season for the entire study area. This work represents the first application in Europe of a methodology based on high resolution (250 m) landscape wildfire modeling to assess potential impacts of climate changes on wildfire exposure at a national scale. The findings can provide information and support in wildfire management planning and fire risk mitigation activities.

  15. SEERISK concept: Dealing with climate change related hazards in southeast Europe: A common methodology for risk assessment and mapping focusing on floods, drought, winds, heat wave and wildfire.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Papathoma-Koehle, Maria; Promper, Catrin; Glade, Thomas

    2014-05-01

    Southeast Europe is a region that suffers often from natural hazards and has experienced significant losses in the recent past due to extreme weather conditions and their side-effects (cold and heat waves, extreme precipitation leading to floods / flash floods, thunderstorms, extreme winds, drought and wildfires). SEERISK ("Joint Disaster Management Risk Assessment and Preparedness in the Danube macro-region") is a European funded SEE (Southeast Europe) project that aims at the harmonisation and consistency among risk assessment practices undertaken by the partner countries at various levels regarding climate change related disasters. A common methodology for risk assessment has been developed that offers alternatives in order to tackle the problem of limited data. The methodology proposes alternative steps for hazard and vulnerability assessment that, according to the data availability, range from detailed modelling to expert judgement. In the present study the common methodology has been adapted for five hazard types (floods, drought, winds, heat wave and wildfire) that are expected to be affected by climate change in the future and are relevant for the specific study areas. The last step will be the application of the methodology in six different case studies in Hungary, Romania, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Slovakia and Serbia followed by field exercises.

  16. Wildfire exposure analysis on the national forests in the Pacific Northwest, USA.

    PubMed

    Ager, Alan A; Buonopane, Michelle; Reger, Allison; Finney, Mark A

    2013-06-01

    We analyzed wildfire exposure for key social and ecological features on the national forests in Oregon and Washington. The forests contain numerous urban interfaces, old growth forests, recreational sites, and habitat for rare and endangered species. Many of these resources are threatened by wildfire, especially in the east Cascade Mountains fire-prone forests. The study illustrates the application of wildfire simulation for risk assessment where the major threat is from large and rare naturally ignited fires, versus many previous studies that have focused on risk driven by frequent and small fires from anthropogenic ignitions. Wildfire simulation modeling was used to characterize potential wildfire behavior in terms of annual burn probability and flame length. Spatial data on selected social and ecological features were obtained from Forest Service GIS databases and elsewhere. The potential wildfire behavior was then summarized for each spatial location of each resource. The analysis suggested strong spatial variation in both burn probability and conditional flame length for many of the features examined, including biodiversity, urban interfaces, and infrastructure. We propose that the spatial patterns in modeled wildfire behavior could be used to improve existing prioritization of fuel management and wildfire preparedness activities within the Pacific Northwest region.

  17. Rill Erosion in Post Wildfire Forests after Salvage Logging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robichaud, Peter; Wagenbrenner, Joseph; Brown, Robert

    2016-04-01

    Despite the dominance of concentrated flow or rill erosion in the erosion processes especially in steep forest environments that have been affected by wildfire or management activities few studies have quantified these effects on rill erosion. This study quantified the effects of wildfire and post-fire timber salvage operations on rill runoff quantity, runoff velocity, and rill erosion. Simulated rill experiments were conducted at various sites in the Western US after wildfire and timber salvage operations. The onsite conditions consists of burned only, salvage logged, skid or snig trail, or skid trails with extra logging debris added. For each rill experiment, concentrated flow was applied at the top of the plot through an energy dissipater at five inflow rates for 12 min each. Runoff was sampled every 2 min and runoff volume and sediment concentration were determined for each sample. The runoff velocity was measured using a dyed calcium chloride solution and two conductivity probes placed a known distance apart. Runoff volume, runoff velocities, and sediment concentrations increased with increasing levels of disturbance. The burned only plots had lower runoff rates and sediment concentrations than any of the other disturbances. The salvage logged plots had greater responses than the burn only plots and the mitigation treatment had a marginal effect on runoff ratios, runoff velocities and sediment concentrations. These results suggest that additional disturbance after a wildfire can increase the erosional response and that proper erosion control mitigation may be an important consideration for post fire management to reduce onsite erosion.

  18. Rapid increases and time-lagged declines in amphibian occupancy after wildfire

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hossack, Blake R.; Lowe, Winsor H.; Corn, Paul Stephen

    2013-01-01

    Climate change is expected to increase the frequency and severity of drought and wildfire. Aquatic and moisture-sensitive species, such as amphibians, may be particularly vulnerable to these modified disturbance regimes because large wildfires often occur during extended droughts and thus may compound environmental threats. However, understanding of the effects of wildfires on amphibians in forests with long fire-return intervals is limited. Numerous stand-replacing wildfires have occurred since 1988 in Glacier National Park (Montana, U.S.A.), where we have conducted long-term monitoring of amphibians. We measured responses of 3 amphibian species to fires of different sizes, severity, and age in a small geographic area with uniform management. We used data from wetlands associated with 6 wildfires that burned between 1988 and 2003 to evaluate whether burn extent and severity and interactions between wildfire and wetland isolation affected the distribution of breeding populations. We measured responses with models that accounted for imperfect detection to estimate occupancy during prefire (0-4 years) and different postfire recovery periods. For the long-toed salamander (Ambystoma macrodactylum) and Columbia spotted frog (Rana luteiventris), occupancy was not affected for 6 years after wildfire. But 7-21 years after wildfire, occupancy for both species decreased ≥ 25% in areas where >50% of the forest within 500 m of wetlands burned. In contrast, occupancy of the boreal toad (Anaxyrus boreas) tripled in the 3 years after low-elevation forests burned. This increase in occupancy was followed by a gradual decline. Our results show that accounting for magnitude of change and time lags is critical to understanding population dynamics of amphibians after large disturbances. Our results also inform understanding of the potential threat of increases in wildfire frequency or severity to amphibians in the region.

  19. Rapid increases and time-lagged declines in amphibian occupancy after wildfire.

    PubMed

    Hossack, Blake R; Lowe, Winsor H; Corn, Paul Stephen

    2013-02-01

    Climate change is expected to increase the frequency and severity of drought and wildfire. Aquatic and moisture-sensitive species, such as amphibians, may be particularly vulnerable to these modified disturbance regimes because large wildfires often occur during extended droughts and thus may compound environmental threats. However, understanding of the effects of wildfires on amphibians in forests with long fire-return intervals is limited. Numerous stand-replacing wildfires have occurred since 1988 in Glacier National Park (Montana, U.S.A.), where we have conducted long-term monitoring of amphibians. We measured responses of 3 amphibian species to fires of different sizes, severity, and age in a small geographic area with uniform management. We used data from wetlands associated with 6 wildfires that burned between 1988 and 2003 to evaluate whether burn extent and severity and interactions between wildfire and wetland isolation affected the distribution of breeding populations. We measured responses with models that accounted for imperfect detection to estimate occupancy during prefire (0-4 years) and different postfire recovery periods. For the long-toed salamander (Ambystoma macrodactylum) and Columbia spotted frog (Rana luteiventris), occupancy was not affected for 6 years after wildfire. But 7-21 years after wildfire, occupancy for both species decreased ≥ 25% in areas where >50% of the forest within 500 m of wetlands burned. In contrast, occupancy of the boreal toad (Anaxyrus boreas) tripled in the 3 years after low-elevation forests burned. This increase in occupancy was followed by a gradual decline. Our results show that accounting for magnitude of change and time lags is critical to understanding population dynamics of amphibians after large disturbances. Our results also inform understanding of the potential threat of increases in wildfire frequency or severity to amphibians in the region.

  20. Automated Wildfire Detection Through Artificial Neural Networks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miller, Jerry; Borne, Kirk; Thomas, Brian; Huang, Zhenping; Chi, Yuechen

    2005-01-01

    We have tested and deployed Artificial Neural Network (ANN) data mining techniques to analyze remotely sensed multi-channel imaging data from MODIS, GOES, and AVHRR. The goal is to train the ANN to learn the signatures of wildfires in remotely sensed data in order to automate the detection process. We train the ANN using the set of human-detected wildfires in the U.S., which are provided by the Hazard Mapping System (HMS) wildfire detection group at NOAA/NESDIS. The ANN is trained to mimic the behavior of fire detection algorithms and the subjective decision- making by N O M HMS Fire Analysts. We use a local extremum search in order to isolate fire pixels, and then we extract a 7x7 pixel array around that location in 3 spectral channels. The corresponding 147 pixel values are used to populate a 147-dimensional input vector that is fed into the ANN. The ANN accuracy is tested and overfitting is avoided by using a subset of the training data that is set aside as a test data set. We have achieved an automated fire detection accuracy of 80-92%, depending on a variety of ANN parameters and for different instrument channels among the 3 satellites. We believe that this system can be deployed worldwide or for any region to detect wildfires automatically in satellite imagery of those regions. These detections can ultimately be used to provide thermal inputs to climate models.

  1. The Cerro Grande Fire - From Wildfire Modeling Through the Fire Aftermath

    SciTech Connect

    Rudell, T. M.; Gille, R. W.

    2001-01-01

    The Cerro Grande Fire developed from a prescribed burn by the National Park Service at Bandelier National Monument near Los Alamos, New Mexico. When the burn went out of control and became a wildfire, it attracted worldwide attention because it threatened the birthplace of the atomic bomb, Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). Was LANL prepared for a fire? What lessons have been learned?

  2. A Five- Year CMAQ Model Performance for Wildfires and Prescribed Fires

    EPA Science Inventory

    Biomass burning has been identified as an important contributor to the degradation of air quality because of its impact on ozone and particulate matter. Two components of the biomass burning inventory, wildfires and prescribed fires are routinely estimated in the national emissio...

  3. Infiltration and interrill erosion rates after a wildfire in western Montana, USA

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The 2000 Valley Complex wildfire burned in steep montane forests with ash cap soils in western Montana, USA. The effects of high burn severity on forest soil hydrologic function was examined using rainfall simulations (100 mm h-1 for 1 h) on 0.5-m2 plots. Infiltration rates and sediment yields and c...

  4. Asthma and Respiratory Related Emergency Room Visits Associated with a Wildfire in Eastern North Carolina in the Summer of 2008

    EPA Science Inventory

    Rationale: Epidemiological studies have shown associations between the incidence of increased emergency room admissions, hospital and outpatient clinic visits for respiratory causes with the exposures to wood stove, wildfires, and other forms of organic mass burning. In June 2008...

  5. Wildfires and Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Clearinghouse for Educational Facilities, 2009

    2009-01-01

    This publication discusses conditions that feed wildfires, how a building catches fire, determining the school's risk, creating a survivable space for the school, the importance of maintenance, the fire-resistant school, meeting code requirements, and related flood and mudslide risks. Much of this publication has been adapted for schools from the…

  6. Oregon: Biscuit Wildfire

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2014-05-15

    ... during a record-breaking heat wave, the Biscuit Fire became Oregon's largest wildfire of the past century. Between mid July and early ... Fire was the most expensive fire fighting effort in Oregon's history, with more than 6,000 personnel assisting the battle to suppress the ...

  7. Stream Water and Soil Water Chemistry Following the Table Mountain Wildfire, Washington

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roccanova, V. J.; Gazis, C. A.

    2013-12-01

    Severe wildfire occurrence in the Western United States increased throughout the 20th century and has continued to increase into the 21st century. Global climate change resulting from natural and anthropogenic sources is considered a contributor to this increase in wildfire severity. Fire suppression techniques developed in the early 20th century are also a factor in increased severe wildfire occurrence as they augment available fuel loads. Biomass burning releases nutrients that are held within trees and plants. Nitrogen, phosphorous, and calcium levels have been documented as increasing in stream waters as a result of wildfire. As severe wildfire occurrence increases, so does the likelihood that stream, and to a lesser extent groundwater, will be loaded with nutrients and sediments as a result of wildfire activity. Increased nutrient loads can cause algal blooms that deplete streams of oxygen, important to aquatic plants and animals that reside in these streams. These changes in water quality can also affect humans who depend on these streams for irrigation and drinking water purposes. The Table Mountain wildfire in Washington State was started by a lightning strike that occurred at approximately 8:00 PM on Saturday September 8th, 2012. The fire burned for approximately one month and was declared to be 100% contained on Friday October 5th, 2012. Over this period the fire burned a total of 171 square kilometers of forest. In this study multiple stream and soil water samples were collected from three types of area in the winter through summer following the fire: severely burned, moderately burned, and unburned. All areas sampled have similar bedrock and vegetation cover. These samples were analyzed for major ions and trace element concentrations. Select samples will also be analyzed for strontium isotope ratios. The results of these geochemical analyses will be presented. Because calcium and strontium have similar properties, their concentrations can be combined

  8. Impact of drought on wildfires in Iberia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Russo, Ana; Gouveia, Célia M.; DaCamara, Carlos; Sousa, Pedro; Trigo, Ricardo M.

    2015-04-01

    Southern European countries, and the Iberian Peninsula (IP) in particular, have been vastly affected by summer wildfires (Trigo et al., 2013). This condition is hampered by the frequent warm and dry meteorological conditions found in summer which play a significant role in the triggering and spreading of wildfires. These meteorological conditions are also particularly important for the onset and end of drought periods, a phenomenon that has recurrently affected the IP (Gouveia et al., 2012). Moreover, the IP corresponds to one of the most sensitive areas to current and future climate change, and recent and future trends towards a dryer and warmer Mediterranean climate (Sousa et al., 2014) will tend to exacerbate these problems. The main scope of this study was to investigate the impact of drought on wildfires' burned areas in the IP. The objective was to examine the correlation between drought, as expressed by both the Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI) and the Standardized Precipitation Evapotranspiration Index (SPEI) (Vicente-Serrano et al., 2010), and wildfire burned areas. The SPI and SPEI were both calculated for 4 large regions (Northwestern, Northern, Southwestern and Eastern) whose spatial patterns and seasonal fire regimes were shown to be related with constraining factors such as topography, vegetation cover and climate conditions (Trigo et al., 2013). In this study, the drought indices were determined for the time scales of 3 and 6 months for August and for 12 months in September, thus representing the summer and annual drought. The correlation between drought and burned areas during July and August was particularly significant for the 3 months SPEI and SPI relatively to the 6 and 12 time scales, which indicates that drought and fires relation is a small-size scale process. Moreover, the correlation between drought and burned areas during July and August was particularly significant for the Northern and Southwestern regions both for SPEI for 3 and 6

  9. Human-started wildfires expand the fire niche across the United States

    PubMed Central

    Balch, Jennifer K.; Bradley, Bethany A.; Nagy, R. Chelsea; Fusco, Emily J.; Mahood, Adam L.

    2017-01-01

    The economic and ecological costs of wildfire in the United States have risen substantially in recent decades. Although climate change has likely enabled a portion of the increase in wildfire activity, the direct role of people in increasing wildfire activity has been largely overlooked. We evaluate over 1.5 million government records of wildfires that had to be extinguished or managed by state or federal agencies from 1992 to 2012, and examined geographic and seasonal extents of human-ignited wildfires relative to lightning-ignited wildfires. Humans have vastly expanded the spatial and seasonal “fire niche” in the coterminous United States, accounting for 84% of all wildfires and 44% of total area burned. During the 21-y time period, the human-caused fire season was three times longer than the lightning-caused fire season and added an average of 40,000 wildfires per year across the United States. Human-started wildfires disproportionally occurred where fuel moisture was higher than lightning-started fires, thereby helping expand the geographic and seasonal niche of wildfire. Human-started wildfires were dominant (>80% of ignitions) in over 5.1 million km2, the vast majority of the United States, whereas lightning-started fires were dominant in only 0.7 million km2, primarily in sparsely populated areas of the mountainous western United States. Ignitions caused by human activities are a substantial driver of overall fire risk to ecosystems and economies. Actions to raise awareness and increase management in regions prone to human-started wildfires should be a focus of United States policy to reduce fire risk and associated hazards. PMID:28242690

  10. Human-started wildfires expand the fire niche across the United States.

    PubMed

    Balch, Jennifer K; Bradley, Bethany A; Abatzoglou, John T; Nagy, R Chelsea; Fusco, Emily J; Mahood, Adam L

    2017-03-14

    The economic and ecological costs of wildfire in the United States have risen substantially in recent decades. Although climate change has likely enabled a portion of the increase in wildfire activity, the direct role of people in increasing wildfire activity has been largely overlooked. We evaluate over 1.5 million government records of wildfires that had to be extinguished or managed by state or federal agencies from 1992 to 2012, and examined geographic and seasonal extents of human-ignited wildfires relative to lightning-ignited wildfires. Humans have vastly expanded the spatial and seasonal "fire niche" in the coterminous United States, accounting for 84% of all wildfires and 44% of total area burned. During the 21-y time period, the human-caused fire season was three times longer than the lightning-caused fire season and added an average of 40,000 wildfires per year across the United States. Human-started wildfires disproportionally occurred where fuel moisture was higher than lightning-started fires, thereby helping expand the geographic and seasonal niche of wildfire. Human-started wildfires were dominant (>80% of ignitions) in over 5.1 million km(2), the vast majority of the United States, whereas lightning-started fires were dominant in only 0.7 million km(2), primarily in sparsely populated areas of the mountainous western United States. Ignitions caused by human activities are a substantial driver of overall fire risk to ecosystems and economies. Actions to raise awareness and increase management in regions prone to human-started wildfires should be a focus of United States policy to reduce fire risk and associated hazards.

  11. High altitude aircraft remote sensing during the 1988 Yellowstone National Park wildfires

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ambrosia, Vincent G.

    1990-01-01

    An overview is presented of the effects of the wildfires that occurred in the Yellowstone National Park during 1988 and the techniques employed to combat these fires with the use of remote sensing. The fire management team utilized King-Air and Merlin aircraft flying night missions with a thermal IR line-scanning system. NASA-Ames Research Center assisted with an ER-2 high altitude aircraft with the ability to down-link active data from the aircraft via a teledetection system. The ER-2 was equipped with a multispectral Thematic Mapper Simulator scanner and the resultant map data and video imagery was provided to the fire command personnel for field evaluation and fire suppression activities. This type of information proved very valuable to the fire control management personnel and to the continuing ecological research goals of NASA-Ames scientists analyzing the effects of burn type and severity on ecosystem recovery and development.

  12. Satellite Observation Highlights of the 2010 Russian Wildfires

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Witte, Jacquelyn C.; Douglass, Anne R.; Duncan, Bryan N.; daSilva, Arlindo; Torres, Omar

    2010-01-01

    From late-July through mid-August 2010, wildfires raged in western Russia. The resulting thick smoke and biomass burning products were transported over the highly populated Moscow city and surrounding regions, seriously impairing visibility and affecting human health. We demonstrate the uniqueness of the 2010 Russian wildfires by using satellite observations from NASA's Earth Observing System (EOS) platforms. Over Moscow and the region of major fire activity to the southeast, we calculate unprecedented increases in the MODIS fire count record of 178 %, an order of magnitude increase in the MODIS fire radiative power (308%) and OMI absorbing aerosols (255%), and a 58% increase in AIRS total carbon monoxide (CO). The exceptionally high levels of CO are shown to be of comparable strength to the 2006 El Nino wildfires over Indonesia. Both events record CO values exceeding 30x10(exp 7) molec/ square cm.

  13. Sensitivity of vegetation indices to different burn and vegetation ratios using LANDSAT-5 satellite data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pleniou, M.; Koutsias, N.

    2013-08-01

    The application of vegetation indices is a very common approach in remote sensing of burned areas to either map the fire scar or estimate burn severity since they minimize the effect of exogenous factors and enhance the correlation with the internal parameters of vegetation. In a recent study we found that the original spectral channels, based on which these indices are estimated, are sensitive to external parameters of the vegetation as for example the spectral reflectance of the background soil. In such cases, the influence of the soil in the reflectance values is different in the various spectral regions depending on its type. These problems are further enhanced by the non-homogeneous pixels, as created from fractions of different types of land cover. Parnitha (Greece), where a wildfire occurred on July 2007, was established as test site. The purpose of this work is to explore the sensitivity of vegetation indices when used to estimate and map different fractions of fire-scorched (burned) and non fire-scorched (vegetated) areas. IKONOS, a very high resolution satellite imagery, was used to create a three-class thematic map to extract the percentages of vegetation, burned surfaces, and bare soil. Using an overlaid fishnet we extracted samples of completely "burned", completely "vegetated" pixels and proportions with different burn/vegetation ratios (45%-55% burned - 45%-55% vegetation, 20%-30% burned - 70%- 80% vegetation, 70%-80% burned - 20%-30% vegetation). Vegetation indices were calculated (NDVI, IPVI, SAVI) and their values were extracted to characterize the mentioned classes. The main findings of our recent research were that vegetation indices are less sensitive to external parameters of the vegetation by minimizing external effects. Thus, the semi-burned classes were spectrally more consistent to their different fractions of scorched and non-scorched vegetation, than the original spectral channels based on which these indices are estimated.

  14. Effects of flow regime on stream turbidity and suspended solids after wildfire, Colorado Front Range

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Murphy, Sheila F.; McCleskey, R. Blaine; Writer, Jeffrey H.

    2012-01-01

    Wildfires occur frequently in the Colorado Front Range and can alter the hydrological response of watersheds, yet little information exists on the impact of flow regime and storm events on post-wildfire water quality. The flow regime in the region is characterized by base-flow conditions during much of the year and increased runoff during spring snowmelt and summer convective storms. The impact of snowmelt and storm events on stream discharge and water quality was evaluated for about a year after a wildfire near Boulder, Colorado, USA. During spring snowmelt and low-intensity storms, differences in discharge and turbidity at sites upstream and downstream from the burned areas were minimal. However, high-intensity convective storms resulted in dramatic increases in discharge and turbidity at sites downstream from the burned area. This study highlights the importance of using high-frequency sampling to assess accurately wildfire impacts on water quality downstream.

  15. Examining Atmospheric and Ecological Drivers of Wildfires, Modeling Wildfire Occurrence in the Southwest United States, and Using Atmospheric Sounding Observations to Verify National Weather Service Spot Forecasts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nauslar, Nicholas J.

    of wildfires and large wildfires identified days or time periods with increased wildfire activity for each PSA and the SWA. Self-organizing maps utilizing 500 and 700 hPa geopotential heights and precipitable water were implemented to identify atmospheric patterns contributing to the NAM onset and busy days/periods for each PSA and the SWA. Resulting SOM map types also showed the transition to, during, and from the NAM. Northward and eastward displacements of the subtropical ridge (i.e., four-corners high) over the SWA were associated with NAM onset, and a suppressed subtropical ridge and breakdown of the subtropical ridge map types over the SWA were associated with increased wildfire activity. We implemented boosted regression trees (BRT) to model wildfire occurrence for all and large wildfires for different wildfire types (i.e., lightning, human) across the SWA by PSA. BRT models for all wildfires demonstrated relatively small mean and mean absolute errors and showed better predictability on days with wildfires. Cross-validated accuracy assessments for large wildfires demonstrated the ability to discriminate between large wildfire and non-large wildfire days across all wildfire types. Measurements describing fuel conditions (i.e., 100 and 1000-hour dead fuel moisture, energy release component) were the most important predictors when considering all wildfire types and sizes. However, a combination of fuels and atmospheric predictors (i.e., lightning, temperature) proved most predictive for large wildfire occurrence, and the number of relevant predictors increases for large wildfires indicating more conditions need to align to support large wildfires.

  16. Climate, CO2, and demographic impacts on global wildfire emissions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knorr, W.; Jiang, L.; Arneth, A.

    2015-09-01

    Wildfires are by far the largest contributor to global biomass burning and constitute a large global source of atmospheric traces gases and aerosols. Such emissions have a considerable impact on air quality and constitute a major health hazard. Biomass burning also influences the radiative balance of the atmosphere and is thus not only of societal, but also of significant scientific interest. There is a common perception that climate change will lead to an increase in emissions as hot and dry weather events that promote wildfire will become more common. However, even though a few studies have found that the inclusion of CO2 fertilization of photosynthesis and changes in human population patterns will tend to somewhat lower predictions of future wildfire emissions, no such study has included full ensemble ranges of both climate predictions and population projections, including the effect of different degrees of urbanisation. Here, we present a series of 124 simulations with the LPJ-GUESS-SIMFIRE global dynamic vegetation - wildfire model, including a semi-empirical formulation for the prediction of burned area based on fire weather, fuel continuity and human population density. The simulations comprise Climate Model Intercomparison Project 5 (CMIP5) climate predictions from eight Earth system models using two Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) and five scenarios of future human population density based on the series of Shared Socioeconomic Pathways (SSPs), sensitivity tests for the effect of climate and CO2, as well as a sensitivity analysis using two alternative parameterisations of the semi-empirical burned-area model. Contrary to previous work, we find no clear future trend of global wildfire emissions for the moderate emissions and climate change scenario based on the RCP 4.5. Only historical population change introduces a decline by around 15 % since 1900. Future emissions could either increase for low population growth and fast urbanisation, or

  17. Wildfire and landscape change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Santi, P.; Cannon, S.; DeGraff, J.

    2013-01-01

    Wildfire is a worldwide phenomenon that is expected to increase in extent and severity in the future, due to fuel accumulations, shifting land management practices, and climate change. It immediately affects the landscape by removing vegetation, depositing ash, influencing water-repellent soil formation, and physically weathering boulders and bedrock. These changes typically lead to increased erosion through sheetwash, rilling, dry ravel, and increased mass movement in the form of floods, debris flow, rockfall, and landslides. These process changes bring about landform changes as hillslopes are lowered and stream channels aggrade or incise at increased rates. Furthermore, development of alluvial fans, debris fans, and talus cones are enhanced. The window of disturbance to the landscape caused by wildfire is typically on the order of three to four years, with some effects persisting up to 30 years.

  18. Comparison of the radiological dose from the Cerro Grande fire to a natural wildfire.

    PubMed

    Volkerding, John M

    2004-01-01

    Since the Cerro Grande fire burned portions of a Department of Energy facility where nuclear weapons research occurs, it is important to determine if the fire posed greater risk to the public than a natural fire. All wildfires release radioactive as well as other toxic pollutants into the atmosphere. Thus, it is important to determine if the radioactive air emissions from the Cerro Grande fire were statistically different than those from a natural wildfire, specifically the Viveash fire.

  19. An analysis of wildfire prevention

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Heineke, J. M.; Weissenberger, S.

    1974-01-01

    A model of the production of wildfire ignitions and damages is developed and used to determine wildland activity-regulation decisions, which minimize total expected cost-plus-loss due to wildfires. In this context, the implications of various policy decisions are considered. The resulting decision rules take a form that makes it possible for existing wildfire management agencies to readily adopt them upon collection of the required data.

  20. Analysis of climate and topographic effect on wildfire regime in Liguria, Italy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fiorucci, Paolo; Biondi, Guido; Campo, Lorenzo; D'Andrea, Mirko; Degli Esposti, Silvia

    2016-04-01

    Wildfire risk is particularly significant in Italy, both in summer and winter season due to the high topographic and vegetation heterogeneity of the territory. Liguria is one of the few regions in Italy affected by wildfires both in summer and winter. Most of the fires in Italy occur in summer season and the burned area is largely greater than in winter season. In Liguria, the number of wildfires and the burned area is higher in winter than in summer. Winter fire regime is mainly due to frequent extremely dry winds from the north in condition of curing for most of the herbaceous species. Southern and central regions and the large islands are characterized by a severe summer fire regime, because of the higher temperatures and prolonged lack of precipitation. The threat of wildfires in Italy is not confined to wooded areas as they extend to agricultural areas and urban-forest interface areas. In view of the limited availability of fire risk management resources, most of which are used in the management of national and regional air services, it is necessary to precisely identify the areas most vulnerable to fire risk. The few resources available can thus be used on a yearly basis to mitigate problems in the areas at highest risk by defining a program of forest management interventions. The availability of a mapping of fire perimeters spans almost 20 years (1996-2013), and this, combined with a detailed knowledge of topography, climate and land cover allowed to understand which are the main features involved in forest fire occurrences and their behavior. The seasonality of the fire regime was also considered, partitioning the analysis in two macro season (November-April and May- October). Total precipitation and average air temperature obtained from the interpolation of 30 years-long time series from 164 raingauges and 127 thermometers series were considered. The analysis was based on a recursive-quantiles subdivision of the territory in classes based on the different

  1. A decision support system for water supply in watersheds with recurrent wildfires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Santos, Regina; Fernandes, Luís; Pereira, Mário; Cortes, Rui; Pacheco, Fernando

    2015-04-01

    The Beça River basin (North of Portugal) is barely affected by anthropogenic pressures, namely by the harmful effects of industrialization, urbanization or intensive agriculture. However, this basin is subject to recurrent wildfires, which plays a major role on soil erosion and water quality deterioration. Wildfires are responsible for increasing the concentration of soil nitrogen (N) and phosphorous (P) that ultimately arise in the rivers and water reservoirs as a result of transport by rainfall. In this sense, the main aims of this study are threefold: (i) to assess the relationship between fire occurrence and P concentration in river water, (ii) to model the P and N concentrations in stream water at the basin and sub-basin scales, and (iii) to propose management guidelines for the protection of drinking water resources taking into account the local history on forest fires. This study includes morphological, hydrological and climatological characterization of the study area as well as the spatial-temporal distribution of the fire incidence in the basin. The rainfall-runoff and nutrient transport processes were performed respectively with Mike Hydro Basin and the ECO Lab. The data requirements for these analysis/tools includes: a digital elevation model, Corine Land Cover maps (for 1990, 2000 and 2006), cartography of burned areas (covering the period 1990 - 2013) and wildfire risk (assessed in 2011), daily records of temperature, precipitation and stream flow, measured at monitoring stations (during the 1990 - 2006 period). Obtained results reveals a maximum fire recurrence of 5 times during the study period (1990 - 2013) and robust exponential regression observed between burned area and wildfire risk (R2 > 0.9). The biophysical parameters contributes to 86% of the fire risk which suggest that burnt area in the Beça River basin is essentially triggered by natural causes. A total of 16,396 ha was burned between 1990 and 2013, corresponding to 47% of the basin

  2. Near-Real-Time Earth Observation Data Supporting Wildfire Management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ambrosia, V. G.; Zajkowski, T.; Quayle, B.

    2013-12-01

    During disaster events, the most critical element needed by responding personnel and management teams is situational intelligence / awareness. During rapidly-evolving events such as wildfires, the need for timely information is critical to save lives, property and resources. The wildfire management agencies in the US rely heavily on remote sensing information both from airborne platforms as well as from orbital assets. The ability to readily have information from those systems, not just data, is critical to effective control and damage mitigation. NASA has been collaborating with the USFS to mature and operationalize various asset-information capabilities to effect improved knowledge of fire-prone areas, monitor wildfire events in real-time, assess effectiveness of fire management strategies, and provide rapid, post-fire assessment for recovery operations. Specific examples of near-real-time remote sensing asset utility include daily MODIS data employed to assess fire potential / wildfire hazard areas, and national-scale hot-spot detection, airborne thermal sensor collected during wildfire events to effect management strategies, EO-1 ALI 'pointable' satellite sensor data to assess fire-retardant application effectiveness, and Landsat 8 and other sensor data to derive burn severity indices for post-fire remediation work. These cases of where near-real-time data is used operationally during the previous few fire seasons will be presented.

  3. Biophysical Interactions of Channel Incision Following Wildfire: Empirical Evidence and Conceptual Modeling Framework

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hyde, K.; Wilcox, A. C.; Tague, C.; Jencso, K. G.

    2013-12-01

    Where wildfire occurs in mountainous areas, interactions of biomass, landform, and soils control runoff, gully formation, and ultimately landscape evolution. Biomass consumption by wildfire lowers thresholds of channel initiation while vegetation recovery re-stabilizes burned areas and inhibits erosion. The biophysical process mechanisms through which these interactions occur are largely unexplored. We field-mapped and conducted spatial analysis of 99 channel heads formed following fire in the Rocky Mountains of Montana and Idaho. The purpose was to assess the relationship between vegetation disturbance described by remotely-sensed fire severity and the source area, gradient, and curvature conditions required for channel initiation. Increasing fire severity systematically reduced source area steepness and/or curvature required for channel incision. The findings suggest that fire severity influences the onset of channel incision defined by location of channel heads and that the threshold for channel initiation decreases as vegetation disturbance increases. We speculate that biomass consumption increases rainfall delivery rate to the ground surface and reduces surface resistance to overland flow proportional to the degree of fire severity. Further, we expect that these changes interact with landform and soils to alter the generation, accumulation, and convergence of overland flow. We present a conceptual modeling framework of spatially variable hydrogeomorphic interactions between vegetation disturbance and recovery, rainfall, fire severity, and mountain headwater landforms.

  4. Historical reconstructions of California wildfires vary by data source

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Syphard, Alexandra D.; Keeley, Jon E.

    2016-01-01

    Historical data are essential for understanding how fire activity responds to different drivers. It is important that the source of data is commensurate with the spatial and temporal scale of the question addressed, but fire history databases are derived from different sources with different restrictions. In California, a frequently used fire history dataset is the State of California Fire and Resource Assessment Program (FRAP) fire history database, which circumscribes fire perimeters at a relatively fine scale. It includes large fires on both state and federal lands but only covers fires that were mapped or had other spatially explicit data. A different database is the state and federal governments’ annual reports of all fires. They are more complete than the FRAP database but are only spatially explicit to the level of county (California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection – Cal Fire) or forest (United States Forest Service – USFS). We found substantial differences between the FRAP database and the annual summaries, with the largest and most consistent discrepancy being in fire frequency. The FRAP database missed the majority of fires and is thus a poor indicator of fire frequency or indicators of ignition sources. The FRAP database is also deficient in area burned, especially before 1950. Even in contemporary records, the huge number of smaller fires not included in the FRAP database account for substantial cumulative differences in area burned. Wildfires in California account for nearly half of the western United States fire suppression budget. Therefore, the conclusions about data discrepancies and the implications for fire research are of broad importance.

  5. Spatio-temporal clustering of wildfires in Portugal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Costa, R.; Pereira, M. G.; Caramelo, L.; Vega Orozco, C.; Kanevski, M.

    2012-04-01

    Several studies have shown that wildfires in Portugal presenthigh temporal as well as high spatial variability (Pereira et al., 2005, 2011). The identification and characterization of spatio-temporal clusters contributes to a comprehensivecharacterization of the fire regime and to improve the efficiency of fire prevention and combat activities. The main goalsin this studyare: (i) to detect the spatio-temporal clusters of burned area; and, (ii) to characterize these clusters along with the role of human and environmental factors. The data were supplied by the National Forest Authority(AFN, 2011) and comprises: (a)the Portuguese Rural Fire Database, PRFD, (Pereira et al., 2011) for the 1980-2007period; and, (b) the national mapping burned areas between 1990 and 2009. In this work, in order to complement the more common cluster analysis algorithms, an alternative approach based onscan statistics and on the permutation modelwas used. This statistical methodallows the detection of local excess events and to test if such an excess can reasonably have occurred by chance.Results obtained for different simulations performed for different spatial and temporal windows are presented, compared and interpreted.The influence of several fire factors such as (climate, vegetation type, etc.) is also assessed. Pereira, M.G., Trigo, R.M., DaCamara, C.C., Pereira, J.M.C., Leite, S.M., 2005:"Synoptic patterns associated with large summer forest fires in Portugal".Agricultural and Forest Meteorology. 129, 11-25. Pereira, M. G., Malamud, B. D., Trigo, R. M., and Alves, P. I.: The history and characteristics of the 1980-2005 Portuguese rural fire database, Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 11, 3343-3358, doi:10.5194/nhess-11-3343-2011, 2011 AFN, 2011: AutoridadeFlorestalNacional (National Forest Authority). Available at http://www.afn.min-agricultura.pt/portal.

  6. Wildfire risk for main vegetation units in a biodiversity hotspot: modeling approach in New Caledonia, South Pacific

    PubMed Central

    Gomez, Céline; Mangeas, Morgan; Curt, Thomas; Ibanez, Thomas; Munzinger, Jérôme; Dumas, Pascal; Jérémy, André; Despinoy, Marc; Hély, Christelle

    2015-01-01

    Wildfire has been recognized as one of the most ubiquitous disturbance agents to impact on natural environments. In this study, our main objective was to propose a modeling approach to investigate the potential impact of wildfire on biodiversity. The method is illustrated with an application example in New Caledonia where conservation and sustainable biodiversity management represent an important challenge. Firstly, a biodiversity loss index, including the diversity and the vulnerability indexes, was calculated for every vegetation unit in New Caledonia and mapped according to its distribution over the New Caledonian mainland. Then, based on spatially explicit fire behavior simulations (using the FLAMMAP software) and fire ignition probabilities, two original fire risk assessment approaches were proposed: a one-off event model and a multi-event burn probability model. The spatial distribution of fire risk across New Caledonia was similar for both indices with very small localized spots having high risk. The patterns relating to highest risk are all located around the remaining sclerophyll forest fragments and are representing 0.012% of the mainland surface. A small part of maquis and areas adjacent to dense humid forest on ultramafic substrates should also be monitored. Vegetation interfaces between secondary and primary units displayed high risk and should represent priority zones for fire effects mitigation. Low fire ignition probability in anthropogenic-free areas decreases drastically the risk. A one-off event associated risk allowed localizing of the most likely ignition areas with potential for extensive damage. Emergency actions could aim limiting specific fire spread known to have high impact or consist of on targeting high risk areas to limit one-off fire ignitions. Spatially explicit information on burning probability is necessary for setting strategic fire and fuel management planning. Both risk indices provide clues to preserve New Caledonia hot spot of

  7. Mitigating wildfire carbon loss in managed northern peatlands through restoration.

    PubMed

    Granath, Gustaf; Moore, Paul A; Lukenbach, Maxwell C; Waddington, James M

    2016-06-27

    Northern peatlands can emit large amounts of carbon and harmful smoke pollution during a wildfire. Of particular concern are drained and mined peatlands, where management practices destabilize an array of ecohydrological feedbacks, moss traits and peat properties that moderate water and carbon losses in natural peatlands. Our results demonstrate that drained and mined peatlands in Canada and northern Europe can experience catastrophic deep burns (>200 t C ha(-1) emitted) under current weather conditions. Furthermore, climate change will cause greater water losses in these peatlands and subject even deeper peat layers to wildfire combustion. However, the rewetting of drained peatlands and the restoration of mined peatlands can effectively lower the risk of these deep burns, especially if a new peat moss layer successfully establishes and raises peat moisture content. We argue that restoration efforts are a necessary measure to mitigate the risk of carbon loss in managed peatlands under climate change.

  8. Mitigating wildfire carbon loss in managed northern peatlands through restoration

    PubMed Central

    Granath, Gustaf; Moore, Paul A.; Lukenbach, Maxwell C.; Waddington, James M.

    2016-01-01

    Northern peatlands can emit large amounts of carbon and harmful smoke pollution during a wildfire. Of particular concern are drained and mined peatlands, where management practices destabilize an array of ecohydrological feedbacks, moss traits and peat properties that moderate water and carbon losses in natural peatlands. Our results demonstrate that drained and mined peatlands in Canada and northern Europe can experience catastrophic deep burns (>200 t C ha−1 emitted) under current weather conditions. Furthermore, climate change will cause greater water losses in these peatlands and subject even deeper peat layers to wildfire combustion. However, the rewetting of drained peatlands and the restoration of mined peatlands can effectively lower the risk of these deep burns, especially if a new peat moss layer successfully establishes and raises peat moisture content. We argue that restoration efforts are a necessary measure to mitigate the risk of carbon loss in managed peatlands under climate change. PMID:27346604

  9. Mitigating wildfire carbon loss in managed northern peatlands through restoration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Granath, Gustaf; Moore, Paul A.; Lukenbach, Maxwell C.; Waddington, James M.

    2016-06-01

    Northern peatlands can emit large amounts of carbon and harmful smoke pollution during a wildfire. Of particular concern are drained and mined peatlands, where management practices destabilize an array of ecohydrological feedbacks, moss traits and peat properties that moderate water and carbon losses in natural peatlands. Our results demonstrate that drained and mined peatlands in Canada and northern Europe can experience catastrophic deep burns (>200 t C ha‑1 emitted) under current weather conditions. Furthermore, climate change will cause greater water losses in these peatlands and subject even deeper peat layers to wildfire combustion. However, the rewetting of drained peatlands and the restoration of mined peatlands can effectively lower the risk of these deep burns, especially if a new peat moss layer successfully establishes and raises peat moisture content. We argue that restoration efforts are a necessary measure to mitigate the risk of carbon loss in managed peatlands under climate change.

  10. Comparing the Effects of Fuel Treatments and Wildfire on Small Catchment Runoff and Sediment Yield at Two Spatial Scales

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robichaud, P. R.; Wagenbrenner, J. W.; Storrar, K. A.; Elliot, W. J.

    2014-12-01

    The role of wildfire in the Rockies continues to be a major concern—especially fire's effect on water quantity and quality, thus protection of water resources is of great management importance as wildfire occurrence and water needs increase. Since high burn severity wildfires often affect soils, vegetation, and hydrologic processes, fuel treatments are often implemented to reduce the risk of high severity fires. The effects of fuel treatments and wildfire on runoff and sediment yields are often examined separately at the hillslope scale but few studies compare the effects of fuel treatments directly to those of wildfire or allow upscaling effects to the small catchment scale. We studied hillslope scale (0.01 ha) sediment yields and catchment scale (2 to 9 ha) runoff and sediment yields at seven fuel treatment sites and one high severity wildfire site in the northern Rockies. The fuel treatments consisted of thinning or timber harvest followed by low to moderate severity prescribed fire. Mean runoff rates from snowmelt and summer rainfall were often similar between the fuel treatments and wildfire catchments, sediment yields were two to three orders of magnitude higher in the wildfire site than in the fuel treatment sites, and much of the sediment was produced during summer rainfall. Comparing results across scales, sediment yields from the fuel treatments and wildfire sites decreased exponentially with increasing area. These results suggest that fuel treatments that reduce the risk of wildfire do not cause significant erosion.

  11. Influence of Logging on the Effects of Wildfire in Siberia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kukavskaya, Elena; Ivanova, Galina; Buryak, Ludmilla; Kalenskaya, Olga; Bogorodskaya, Anna; Zhila, Sergey; McRae, Douglas; Conard, Susan

    2013-04-01

    The Russian boreal zone supports a huge terrestrial carbon pool. Changes in this pool and related changes in land cover have global significance in terms of climate change. Moreover, it is a tremendous and largely untapped reservoir of wood products. The main natural disturbance in these forests is wildfire, which modifies the carbon budget and has potentially important climate feedbacks. In addition both legal and illegal logging are increasing in many forest areas of Siberia. From 2009 to 2012, we investigated a number of logged and unlogged sites to evaluate the impact of logging on wildfire characteristics and subsequent effects of wildfires on the ecosystem. The research was conducted in 3 different ecoregions of Siberia: taiga forest (Angara region), forest-steppe (Shushenskoe region), and mountain forest (Chita region). We analyzed fire effects in different forest types as a function of both the presence of logging and harvest methods. Logged areas often had higher fuel loads due to logging debris, and typically experienced higher severity fires than unlogged forests. We found large variations among sites depending on forest types, type of logging activity, and weather conditions prior to and during burning. Illegal logging resulted in much higher fire hazard than legal logging. Fuel consumption was highest on repeatedly burned areas, where ground cover was often burned to the mineral layer. Estimated carbon emissions were up to 5 times higher on logged areas than on unlogged sites. Soil respiration was less on both burned and logged areas than in undisturbed forest. Changing patterns in the harvest of wood products can be expected to increase the emissions and ecosystem damage from wildfires, inhibit recovery of natural ecosystems, and exacerbate impacts of wildland fire on changing climate and air quality. The research was supported by NASA LCLUC Program, RFBR grant # 12-04-31258, and Russian Academy of Sciences.

  12. Interactive effects of wildfire, forest management, and isolation on amphibian and parasite abundance

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hossack, Blake R.; Corn, P. Stephen; Winsor H. Lowe,; R. Kenneth Honeycutt,; Sean A. Parks,

    2013-01-01

    Projected increases in wildfire and other climate-driven disturbances will affect populations and communities worldwide, including host–parasite relationships. Research in temperate forests has shown that wildfire can negatively affect amphibians, but this research has occurred primarily outside of managed landscapes where interactions with human disturbances could result in additive or synergistic effects. Furthermore, parasites represent a large component of biodiversity and can affect host fitness and population dynamics, yet they are rarely included in studies of how vertebrate hosts respond to disturbance. To determine how wildfire affects amphibians and their parasites, and whether effects differ between protected and managed landscapes, we compared abundance of two amphibians and two nematodes relative to wildfire extent and severity around wetlands in neighboring protected and managed forests (Montana, USA). Population sizes of adult, male long-toed salamanders (Ambystoma macrodactylum) decreased with increased burn severity, with stronger negative effects on isolated populations and in managed forests. In contrast, breeding population sizes of Columbia spotted frogs (Rana luteiventris) increased with burn extent in both protected and managed protected forests. Path analysis showed that the effects of wildfire on the two species of nematodes were consistent with differences in their life history and transmission strategies and the responses of their hosts. Burn severity indirectly reduced abundance of soil-transmitted Cosmocercoides variabilis through reductions in salamander abundance. Burn severity also directly reduced C. variabilis abundance, possibly though changes in soil conditions. For the aquatically transmitted nematode Gyrinicola batrachiensis, the positive effect of burn extent on density of Columbia spotted frog larvae indirectly increased parasite abundance. Our results show that effects of wildfire on amphibians depend upon burn extent

  13. Protect Your Home from Wildfire!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    PTA Today, 1994

    1994-01-01

    Homes in wooded areas or in the wildland/urban interface are at special risk for wildfire. The article provides a checklist of what to keep on hand to make homes safer from wildfire, focusing on vegetation around the home and maintenance of the yard and home. (SM)

  14. Hydrological and sediment connectivity in areas affected by wildfires.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martinez-Murillo, Juan F.; Ruiz-Sinoga, José D.

    2016-04-01

    This study deals with the hydrological and sediment connectivity (HSC) process in burned areas, from detailed to wider spatial scales: -First of all, it is presented a brief review and analysis of meta-data, already published. -Secondly, some examples of HSC are shown from areas affected by wildfires in South of Spain. -Finally, it is an attempt of applying some indexes of hydrological connectivity to those areas. The study try to shed light on this complex process of connectivity from the hydrological and sedimentary point of view, a kew issue to improve the management of burned areas.

  15. Amphibian responses to wildfire in the western united states: Emerging patterns from short-term studies

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hossack, B.R.; Pilliod, D.S.

    2011-01-01

    The increased frequency and severity of large wildfires in the western United States is an important ecological and management issue with direct relevance to amphibian conservation. Although the knowledge of fire effects on amphibians in the region is still limited relative to most other vertebrate species, we reviewed the current literature to determine if there are evident patterns that might be informative for conservation or management strategies. Of the seven studies that compared pre- and post-wildfire data on a variety of metrics, ranging from amphibian occupancy to body condition, two reported positive responses and five detected negative responses by at least one species. Another seven studies used a retrospective approach to compare effects of wildfire on populations: two studies reported positive effects, three reported negative effects from wildfire, and two reported no effects. All four studies that included plethodontid salamanders reported negative effects on populations or individuals; these effects were greater in forests where fire had been suppressed and in areas that burned with high severity. Species that breed in streams are also vulnerable to post-wildfire changes in habitat, especially in the Southwest. Wildfire is also important for maintaining suitable habitat for diverse amphibian communities, although those results may not be evident immediately after an area burns. We expect that wildfire will extirpate few healthy amphibian populations, but it is still unclear how populations will respond to wildfire in the context of land management (including pre- and post-fire timber harvest) and fragmentation. Wildfire may also increase the risk of decline or extirpation for small, isolated, or stressed (e.g., from drought or disease) populations. Improved understanding of how these effects vary according to changes in fire frequency and severity are critical to form more effective conservation strategies for amphibians in the western United States.

  16. Regional modeling of large wildfires under current and potential future climates in Colorado and Wyoming, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    West, Amanda; Kumar, Sunil; Jarnevich, Catherine S.

    2016-01-01

    Regional analysis of large wildfire potential given climate change scenarios is crucial to understanding areas most at risk in the future, yet wildfire models are not often developed and tested at this spatial scale. We fit three historical climate suitability models for large wildfires (i.e. ≥ 400 ha) in Colorado andWyoming using topography and decadal climate averages corresponding to wildfire occurrence at the same temporal scale. The historical models classified points of known large wildfire occurrence with high accuracies. Using a novel approach in wildfire modeling, we applied the historical models to independent climate and wildfire datasets, and the resulting sensitivities were 0.75, 0.81, and 0.83 for Maxent, Generalized Linear, and Multivariate Adaptive Regression Splines, respectively. We projected the historic models into future climate space using data from 15 global circulation models and two representative concentration pathway scenarios. Maps from these geospatial analyses can be used to evaluate the changing spatial distribution of climate suitability of large wildfires in these states. April relative humidity was the most important covariate in all models, providing insight to the climate space of large wildfires in this region. These methods incorporate monthly and seasonal climate averages at a spatial resolution relevant to land management (i.e. 1 km2) and provide a tool that can be modified for other regions of North America, or adapted for other parts of the world.

  17. Burnt area detection and hotspot analysis of wildfires in Margalla Hills National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khalid, Noora; Ullah, Saleem

    2016-07-01

    Wildfires have been a growing source for the forest degradation and reduction in carbon sequestration which cause climate change and global warming. Thus, severely affect the ecosystem when not checked. Studies have revealed that land managements that do not use fire reduce the fire incidents by as much as 69 percent. This study focuses on mapping the areas burnt by forest fires owing to both natural and anthropogenic causes and identifying the fire prone areas in biodiversity spot of Islamabad, Margalla Hills National Park. The methodology employed based on using remotely sensed data with the integration of GIS techniques to estimate the area in hectares turned to ashes which ensued from forest fires during summers of 2008, 2010 and 2011 by applying Normalized Burn Ratio. Moreover hotspot analysis has also been used to pin point the locations with frequent fire incidents in the past using Global Positioning System (GPS) acquired coordinates from the fire surveys and official burned area statistics. The results revealed that wildfires destroyed some common regions in three years towards west which comprise of dense woodland comprising mainly Acacia Modesta, Dalbergia sissoo and Pinus longifolia. The calculated burnt area was 516 hectares, 122 hectares and 45 hectares for 2008, 2010 and 2011 respectively. Although a decline in burnt area has been observed owing to responsible management of authorities and development of fire pickets, still measures need to be taken to eradicate the core causes in charge of these fires and to promote reforestation. This study will allow policy makers and regulatory authorities to identify risk prone areas which will assist them in formulating a strategy to suppress fire incidents.

  18. The role of precipitation type, intensity, and spatial distribution in source water quality after wildfire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murphy, Sheila F.; Writer, Jeffrey H.; Blaine McCleskey, R.; Martin, Deborah A.

    2015-08-01

    Storms following wildfires are known to impair drinking water supplies in the southwestern United States, yet our understanding of the role of precipitation in post-wildfire water quality is far from complete. We quantitatively assessed water-quality impacts of different hydrologic events in the Colorado Front Range and found that for a three-year period, substantial hydrologic and geochemical responses downstream of a burned area were primarily driven by convective storms with a 30 min rainfall intensity >10 mm h-1. These storms, which typically occur several times each year in July-September, are often small in area, short-lived, and highly variable in intensity and geographic distribution. Thus, a rain gage network with high temporal resolution and spatial density, together with high-resolution stream sampling, are required to adequately characterize post-wildfire responses. We measured total suspended sediment, dissolved organic carbon (DOC), nitrate, and manganese concentrations that were 10-156 times higher downstream of a burned area compared to upstream during relatively common (50% annual exceedance probability) rainstorms, and water quality was sufficiently impaired to pose water-treatment concerns. Short-term water-quality impairment was driven primarily by increased surface runoff during higher intensity convective storms that caused erosion in the burned area and transport of sediment and chemical constituents to streams. Annual sediment yields downstream of the burned area were controlled by storm events and subsequent remobilization, whereas DOC yields were closely linked to annual runoff and thus were more dependent on interannual variation in spring runoff. Nitrate yields were highest in the third year post-wildfire. Results from this study quantitatively demonstrate that water quality can be altered for several years after wildfire. Because the southwestern US is prone to wildfires and high-intensity rain storms, the role of storms in post-wildfire

  19. The role of precipitation type, intensity, and spatial distribution in source water quality after wildfire

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Murphy, Sheila F.; Writer, Jeffrey H.; McCleskey, R. Blaine; Martin, Deborah A.

    2015-01-01

    Storms following wildfires are known to impair drinking water supplies in the southwestern United States, yet our understanding of the role of precipitation in post-wildfire water quality is far from complete. We quantitatively assessed water-quality impacts of different hydrologic events in the Colorado Front Range and found that for a three-year period, substantial hydrologic and geochemical responses downstream of a burned area were primarily driven by convective storms with a 30 min rainfall intensity >10 mm h−1. These storms, which typically occur several times each year in July–September, are often small in area, short-lived, and highly variable in intensity and geographic distribution. Thus, a rain gage network with high temporal resolution and spatial density, together with high-resolution stream sampling, are required to adequately characterize post-wildfire responses. We measured total suspended sediment, dissolved organic carbon (DOC), nitrate, and manganese concentrations that were 10–156 times higher downstream of a burned area compared to upstream during relatively common (50% annual exceedance probability) rainstorms, and water quality was sufficiently impaired to pose water-treatment concerns. Short-term water-quality impairment was driven primarily by increased surface runoff during higher intensity convective storms that caused erosion in the burned area and transport of sediment and chemical constituents to streams. Annual sediment yields downstream of the burned area were controlled by storm events and subsequent remobilization, whereas DOC yields were closely linked to annual runoff and thus were more dependent on interannual variation in spring runoff. Nitrate yields were highest in the third year post-wildfire. Results from this study quantitatively demonstrate that water quality can be altered for several years after wildfire. Because the southwestern US is prone to wildfires and high-intensity rain storms, the role of storms in post-wildfire

  20. A comparison of effects from prescribed fires and wildfires managed for resource objectives in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nesmith, C.B.; Caprio, Anthony C.; Pfaff, Anne H.; McGinnis, Thomas W.; Keeley, Jon E.

    2011-01-01

    Current goals for prescription burning are focused on measures of fuel consumption and changes in forest density. These benchmarks, however, do not address the extent to which prescription burning meets perceived ecosystem needs of heterogeneity in burning, both for overstory trees and understory herbs and shrubs. There are still questions about how closely prescribed fires mimic these patterns compared to natural wildfires. This study compared burn patterns of prescribed fires and managed unplanned wildfires to understand how the differing burning regimes affect ecosystem properties. Measures of forest structure and fire severity were sampled in three recent prescribed fires and three wildfires managed for resource objectives in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Fine scale patterns of fire severity and heterogeneity were compared between fire types using ground-based measures of fire effects on fuels and overstory and understory vegetation. Prescribed fires and wildfires managed for resource objectives displayed similar patterns of overstory and understory fire severity, heterogeneity, and seedling and sapling survival. Variation among plots within the same fire was always greater than between fire types. Prescribed fires can provide burned landscapes that approximate natural fires in many ways. It is recognized that constraints placed on when wildfires managed for resource objectives are allowed to burn freely may bias the range of conditions that might have been experienced under more natural conditions. Therefore they may not exactly mimic natural wildfires. Overall, the similarity in fire effects that we observed between prescribed fires and managed wildfires indicate that despite the restrictions that are often placed on prescribed fires, they appear to be creating post-fire conditions that approximate natural fires when assessed on a fine spatial scale.

  1. Using satellite image-based maps to improve sugarcane straw burning emission estimates in the state of São Paulo, Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    França, D.; Longo, K.; Rudorff, B.; Aguiar, D.; Freitas, S. R.; Stockler, R.; Pereira, G.

    2014-12-01

    Since the last decade, the global demand for biofuel production has been increasing every year due to the growing need for energy supply security and mitigation of greenhouse gases (GHG). Currently, sugarcane ethanol is one of the most widely used biofuels and Brazil is already the world's largest sugarcane producer, devoting almost 50% of it to ethanol production. The state of São Paulo is the major sugarcane producer in this country, with a cultivated area of about 5.4 Mha in 2011. Approximately 2 million hectares were harvested annually from 2006 to 2011 with the pre-harvest straw burning practice, which emits trace gases and particulate material to the atmosphere. The assessment and monitoring of sugarcane burning impacts are fundamental in order to mitigate the negative impacts of pre-harvest burning and consolidate the environmental benefits of sugarcane ethanol. Although some official inventories created by the Brazilian government have indicated the prevalence of emissions from sugarcane straw burning in total agricultural residue emissions, specific information about emissions of gases and aerosols during pre-harvest burning of sugarcane is still scarce in Brazil. This study aimed to contribute to the improvement of estimates of emissions from sugarcane burning through the use of specific parameters for sugarcane straw burning and a method which has avoided underestimations resulting from the unique characteristics of this type of biomass fire. In this investigation, emissions of several air pollutants released by sugarcane burning during the harvest season were estimated through the integrated use of remote sensing based maps of sugarcane burned area and a numerical tool for the state of São Paulo from 2006 to 2011. Average estimated emissions (Gg/year) were 1,130 ± 152 for CO, 26 ± 4 for NOX, 16 ± 2 for CH4, 45 ± 6 for PM2.5, 120 ± 16 for PM10 and 154 ± 21 for NMHC (non-methane hydrocarbons). An intercomparison among annual emissions from this

  2. Simulating effects of land use policies on extent of the wildland urban interface and wildfire risk in Flathead County, Montana.

    PubMed

    Paveglio, Travis B; Prato, Tony; Hardy, Michael

    2013-11-30

    This study used a wildfire loss simulation model to evaluate how different land use policies are likely to influence wildfire risk in the wildland urban interface (WUI) for Flathead County, Montana. The model accounts for the complex socio-ecological interactions among climate change, economic growth, land use change and policy, homeowner mitigations, and forest treatments in Flathead County's WUI over the five 10-year subperiods comprising the future evaluation period (i.e., 2010-2059). Wildfire risk, defined as expected residential losses from wildfire [E(RLW)], depends on the number of residential properties on parcels, the probability that parcels burn, the probability of wildfire losses to residential structures on properties given the parcels on which those properties are located burn, the average percentage of wildfire-related losses in aesthetic values of residential properties, and the total value (structures plus land) of residential properties. E(RLW) for the five subperiods is simulated for 2010 (referred to as the current), moderately restrictive, and highly restrictive land use policy scenarios, a moderate economic growth scenario and the A2 greenhouse gas emissions scenario. Results demonstrate that increasingly restrictive land use policy for Flathead County significantly reduces the amount and footprint of future residential development in the WUI. In addition, shifting from the current to a moderately restrictive land use policy for Flathead County significantly reduces wildfire risk for the WUI, but shifting from the current to a highly restrictive land use policy does not significantly reduce wildfire risk in the WUI. Both the methods and results of the study can help land and wildfire managers to better manage future wildfire risk and identify residential areas having potentially high wildfire risk.

  3. Immediate health effects of an urban wildfire.

    PubMed Central

    Shusterman, D; Kaplan, J Z; Canabarro, C

    1993-01-01

    To document the immediate health effects of the urban wildfire that swept through parts of Alameda County, California, on October 20 and 21, 1991, we conducted a retrospective review of emergency department and coroner's records. Nine hospitals (6 local and 3 outlying) were surveyed for the week beginning October 20, 1991. Coroner's reports were reviewed for 25 identified fire-related deaths. A total of 241 fire-related emergency encounters, including 44 inpatient admissions, were recorded for 227 persons. Nearly a fourth of emergency department patients were seen for work-related injuries, more than half of which occurred among professional firefighters. Smoke-related disorders constituted more than half of all emergency department cases; of these, 61% had documented bronchospasm. Major trauma and burns contributed 1% and 4% of principal diagnoses, respectively; these were exceeded in number by corneal abrasions (13%), other medical problems (8%), and minor trauma (7%), among other diagnoses. All coroner's cases involved extensive burns, many with documented smoke inhalation injury. While the Oakland-Berkeley fire storm resulted in a high case-fatality ratio among major burn cases (25/31), those who survived the initial fire storm did well clinically. Among emergency department patients, medical (particularly smoke-related) disorders outnumbered traumatic presentations by a ratio of more than 2 to 1. Images PMID:8434462

  4. Inverse modeling of biomass burning emissions using Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer aerosol index for 1997

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Sophia; Penner, Joyce E.; Torres, Omar

    2005-11-01

    We present results from an inverse model study to determine biomass smoke emissions for the year 1997 by comparison of modeled aerosol index (AI) with that measured by the EP TOMS instrument. The IMPACT model with Data Assimilation Office (DAO) meteorology data in 1997 is utilized to obtain aerosol spatial and temporal distributions. Then a radiative transfer model is applied to generate the modeled AI. A Bayesian inverse technique is applied to optimize the difference between the modeled AI and the EP TOMS AI in the same period by regulating monthly a priori biomass smoke emissions in seven predefined regions. The modeled AI with a posteriori emissions is generally in better agreement with the EP TOMS AI. The a posteriori emissions from Indonesia increase by a factor of 8-10 over the a priori emissions due to the Indonesian fires in 1997. The annual total a posteriori source increases by about 13% for the year 1997 (6.31 Tg/yr black carbon and 67.27 Tg/yr smoke) in the base scenario, with a larger adjustment of monthly emissions. The sensitivity of this result to the a priori uncertainties, the height of the smoke layer, the cloud screening criteria, the inclusion of an adjustment of emissions outside the main biomass burning regions, and the inclusion of the covariances between observations in different locations is discussed in a set of sensitivity scenarios. The sensitivity scenarios suggest that the inverse model results are most sensitive to the assumed uncertainty for a priori emissions and the altitude of aerosol layer in the model and are less sensitive to other factors. In the scenario where the uncertainty of a priori emissions is increased to 100% (300% in Indonesia), the total annual black carbon emission is increased to 6.87 Tg/yr, and the smoke emission increases to 73.39 Tg/yr. The a posteriori emissions in Indonesia in the scenario with increased uncertainty are in better agreement with both the TOMS AI and with previous estimates for the

  5. Land management practices associated with house loss in wildfires.

    PubMed

    Gibbons, Philip; van Bommel, Linda; Gill, A Malcolm; Cary, Geoffrey J; Driscoll, Don A; Bradstock, Ross A; Knight, Emma; Moritz, Max A; Stephens, Scott L; Lindenmayer, David B

    2012-01-01

    Losses to life and property from unplanned fires (wildfires) are forecast to increase because of population growth in peri-urban areas and climate change. In response, there have been moves to increase fuel reduction--clearing, prescribed burning, biomass removal and grazing--to afford greater protection to peri-urban communities in fire-prone regions. But how effective are these measures? Severe wildfires in southern Australia in 2009 presented a rare opportunity to address this question empirically. We predicted that modifying several fuels could theoretically reduce house loss by 76%-97%, which would translate to considerably fewer wildfire-related deaths. However, maximum levels of fuel reduction are unlikely to be feasible at every house for logistical and environmental reasons. Significant fuel variables in a logistic regression model we selected to predict house loss were (in order of decreasing effect): (1) the cover of trees and shrubs within 40 m of houses, (2) whether trees and shrubs within 40 m of houses was predominantly remnant or planted, (3) the upwind distance from houses to groups of trees or shrubs, (4) the upwind distance from houses to public forested land (irrespective of whether it was managed for nature conservation or logging), (5) the upwind distance from houses to prescribed burning within 5 years, and (6) the number of buildings or structures within 40 m of houses. All fuel treatments were more effective if undertaken closer to houses. For example, 15% fewer houses were destroyed if prescribed burning occurred at the observed minimum distance from houses (0.5 km) rather than the observed mean distance from houses (8.5 km). Our results imply that a shift in emphasis away from broad-scale fuel-reduction to intensive fuel treatments close to property will more effectively mitigate impacts from wildfires on peri-urban communities.

  6. Land Management Practices Associated with House Loss in Wildfires

    PubMed Central

    Gibbons, Philip; van Bommel, Linda; Gill, A. Malcolm; Cary, Geoffrey J.; Driscoll, Don A.; Bradstock, Ross A.; Knight, Emma; Moritz, Max A.; Stephens, Scott L.; Lindenmayer, David B.

    2012-01-01

    Losses to life and property from unplanned fires (wildfires) are forecast to increase because of population growth in peri-urban areas and climate change. In response, there have been moves to increase fuel reduction—clearing, prescribed burning, biomass removal and grazing—to afford greater protection to peri-urban communities in fire-prone regions. But how effective are these measures? Severe wildfires in southern Australia in 2009 presented a rare opportunity to address this question empirically. We predicted that modifying several fuels could theoretically reduce house loss by 76%–97%, which would translate to considerably fewer wildfire-related deaths. However, maximum levels of fuel reduction are unlikely to be feasible at every house for logistical and environmental reasons. Significant fuel variables in a logistic regression model we selected to predict house loss were (in order of decreasing effect): (1) the cover of trees and shrubs within 40 m of houses, (2) whether trees and shrubs within 40 m of houses was predominantly remnant or planted, (3) the upwind distance from houses to groups of trees or shrubs, (4) the upwind distance from houses to public forested land (irrespective of whether it was managed for nature conservation or logging), (5) the upwind distance from houses to prescribed burning within 5 years, and (6) the number of buildings or structures within 40 m of houses. All fuel treatments were more effective if undertaken closer to houses. For example, 15% fewer houses were destroyed if prescribed burning occurred at the observed minimum distance from houses (0.5 km) rather than the observed mean distance from houses (8.5 km). Our results imply that a shift in emphasis away from broad-scale fuel-reduction to intensive fuel treatments close to property will more effectively mitigate impacts from wildfires on peri-urban communities. PMID:22279530

  7. Assessing increasing susceptibility to wildfire at the wildland-urban fringe in the western United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kinoshita, A. M.; Hogue, T. S.

    2013-05-01

    Much of the western U.S. is increasingly susceptible to wildfire activity due to drier conditions, elevated fuel loads, and expanding urbanization. As population increases, development pushes the urban boundary further into wildlands, creating more potential for human interaction at the wildland-urban interface (WUI), primarily from human ignitions and fire suppression policies. The immediate impacts of wildfires include vulnerability to debris flows, flooding, and impaired water quality. Fires also alter longer-term hydrological and ecosystem behavior. The current study utilizes geospatial datasets to investigate historical wildfire size and frequency relative to the WUI for a range of cities across western North America. California, the most populous state in the U.S., has an extensive fire history. The decennial population and acres burned for four major counties (Los Angeles, San Bernardino, San Diego, and Shasta) in California show that increasing wildfire size and frequency follow urbanization trends, with high correlation between the last decade of burned area, urban-fringe proximity, and increasing population. Ultimately, results will provide information on urban fringe communities that are most vulnerable to the risks associated with wildfire and post-fire impacts. In light of evolving land use policies (i.e. forest management and treatment, development at the urban-fringe) and climate change, it is critical to advance our knowledge of the implications that these conditions pose to urban centers, communicate risks to the public, and ultimately provide guidance for wildfire management.

  8. Evidence, exaggeration, and error in historical accounts of chaparral wildfires in California.

    PubMed

    Goforth, Brett R; Minnich, Richard A

    2007-04-01

    For more than half a century, ecologists and historians have been integrating the contemporary study of ecosystems with data gathered from historical sources to evaluate change over broad temporal and spatial scales. This approach is especially useful where ecosystems were altered before formal study as a result of natural resources management, land development, environmental pollution, and climate change. Yet, in many places, historical documents do not provide precise information, and pre-historical evidence is unavailable or has ambiguous interpretation. There are similar challenges in evaluating how the fire regime of chaparral in California has changed as a result of fire suppression management initiated at the beginning of the 20th century. Although the firestorm of October 2003 was the largest officially recorded in California (approximately 300,000 ha), historical accounts of pre-suppression wildfires have been cited as evidence that such a scale of burning was not unprecedented, suggesting the fire regime and patch mosaic in chaparral have not substantially changed. We find that the data do not support pre-suppression megafires, and that the impression of large historical wildfires is a result of imprecision and inaccuracy in the original reports, as well as a parlance that is beset with hyperbole. We underscore themes of importance for critically analyzing historical documents to evaluate ecological change. A putative 100 mile long by 10 mile wide (160 x 16 km) wildfire reported in 1889 was reconstructed to an area of chaparral approximately 40 times smaller by linking local accounts to property tax records, voter registration rolls, claimed insurance, and place names mapped with a geographical information system (GIS) which includes data from historical vegetation surveys. We also show that historical sources cited as evidence of other large chaparral wildfires are either demonstrably inaccurate or provide anecdotal information that is immaterial in the

  9. Influences of prior wildfires on vegetation response to subsequent fire in a reburned Southwestern landscape.

    PubMed

    Coop, Jonathan D; Parks, Sean A; McClernan, Sarah R; Holsinger, Lisa M

    2016-03-01

    Large and severe wildfires have raised concerns about the future of forested landscapes in the southwestern United States, especially under repeated burning. In 2011, under extreme weather and drought conditions, the Las Conchas fire burned over several previous burns as well as forests not recently exposed to fire. Our purpose was to examine the influences of prior wildfires on plant community composition and structure, subsequent burn severity, and vegetation response. To assess these relationships, we used satellite-derived measures of burn severity and a nonmetric multidimensional scaling of pre- and post- Las Conchas field samples. Earlier burns were associated with shifts from forested sites to open savannas and meadows, oak scrub, and ruderal communities. These non-forested vegetation types exhibited both resistance to subsequent fire, measured by reduced burn severity, and resilience to reburning, measured by vegetation recovery relative to forests not exposed to recent prior fire. Previous shifts toward non-forested states were strongly reinforced by reburning. Ongoing losses of forests and their ecological values confirm the need for restoration interventions. However, given future wildfire and climate projections, there may also be opportunities presented by transformations toward fire-resistant and resilient vegetation types within portions of the landscape.

  10. Prescribed fires as ecological surrogates for wildfires: A stream and riparian perspective

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Arkle, R.S.; Pilliod, D.S.

    2010-01-01

    Forest managers use prescribed fire to reduce wildfire risk and to provide resource benefits, yet little information is available on whether prescribed fires can function as ecological surrogates for wildfire in fire-prone landscapes. Information on impacts and benefits of this management tool on stream and riparian ecosystems is particularly lacking. We used a beyond-BACI (Before, After, Control, Impact) design to investigate the effects of a prescribed fire on a stream ecosystem and compared these findings to similar data collected after wildfire. For 3 years after prescribed fire treatment, we found no detectable changes in periphyton, macroinvertebrates, amphibians, fish, and riparian and stream habitats compared to data collected over the same time period in four unburned reference streams. Based on changes in fuels, plant and litter cover, and tree scorching, this prescribed fire was typical of those being implemented in ponderosa pine forests throughout the western U.S. However, we found that the extent and severity of riparian vegetation burned was substantially lower after prescribed fire compared to nearby wildfires. The early-season prescribed fire did not mimic the riparian or in-stream ecological effects observed following a nearby wildfire, even in catchments with burn extents similar to the prescribed fire. Little information exists on the effects of long-term fire exclusion from riparian forests, but a "prescribed fire regime" of repeatedly burning upland forests while excluding fire in adjacent riparian forests may eliminate an important natural disturbance from riparian and stream habitats.

  11. A project for monitoring trends in burn severity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Eidenshink, Jeffery C.; Schwind, Brian; Brewer, Ken; Zhu, Zhu-Liang; Quayle, Brad; Howard, Stephen M.

    2007-01-01

    Jeff Eidenshink, Brian Schwind, Ken Brewer, Zhi-Liang Zhu, Brad Quayle, and Elected officials and leaders of environmental agencies need information about the effects of large wildfires in order to set policy and make management decisions. Recently, the Wildland Fire Leadership Council (WFLC), which implements and coordinates the National Fire Plan (NFP) and Federal Wildland Fire Management Policies (National Fire Plan 2004), adopted a strategy to monitor the effectiveness of the National Fire Plan and the Healthy Forests Restoration Act (HFRA). One component of this strategy is to assess the environmental impacts of large wildland fires and identify the trends of burn severity on all lands across the United States. To that end, WFLC has sponsored a six-year project, Monitoring Trends in Burn Severity (MTBS), which requires the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service (USDA-FS) and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) to map and assess the burn severity for all large current and historical fires. Using Landsat data and the differenced Normalized Burn Ratio (dNBR) algorithm, the USGS Center for Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) and USDA-FS Remote Sensing Applications Center will map burn severity of all fires since 1984 greater than 202 ha (500ac) in the east, and 404 ha (1,000 ac) in the west. The number of historical fires from this period combined with current fires occurring during the course of the project will exceed 9,000. The MTBS project will generate burn severity data, maps, and reports, which will be available for use at local, state, and national levels to evaluate trends in burn severity and help develop and assess the effectiveness of land management decisions. Additionally, the information developed will provide a baseline from which to monitor the recovery and health of fire-affected landscapes over time. Spatial and tabular data quantifying burn severity will augment existing information used to estimate risk associated with a range

  12. Combustion efficiency and emission factors for US wildfires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Urbanski, S. P.

    2013-01-01

    In the US wildfires and prescribed burning present significant challenges to air regulatory agencies attempting to achieve and maintain compliance with National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) and Regional Haze Regulations. Wildland fire emission inventories (EI) provide critical inputs for atmospheric chemical transport models used by air regulatory agencies to understand and to predict the impact of fires on air quality. Fire emission factors (EF), which quantify the amount of pollutants released per mass of biomass burned, are essential input for the emission models used to develop EI. Over the past decade substantial progress has been realized in characterizing the composition of fresh biomass burning (BB) smoke and in quantifying BB EF. However, most BB studies of temperate ecosystems have focused on emissions from prescribed burning. Little information is available on EF for wildfires in the temperate forests of the conterminous US. Current emission estimates for US wildfires rely largely on EF measurements from prescribed burns and it is unknown if these fires are a reasonable proxy for wildfires. Over 8 days in August of 2011 we deployed airborne chemistry instruments and sampled emissions from 3 wildfires and a prescribed fire that occurred in mixed conifer forests of the northern Rocky Mountains. We measured the combustion efficiency, quantified as the modified combustion efficiency (MCE), and EF for CO2, CO, and CH4. Our study average values for MCE, EFCO2, EFCO, and EFCH4 were 0.883, 1596 g kg-1, 135 g kg-1, 7.30 g kg-1, respectively. Compared with previous field studies of prescribed fires in similar forest types, the fires sampled in our study had significantly lower MCE and EFCO2 and significantly higher EFCO and EFCH4. An examination of our study and 47 temperate forest prescribed fires from previously published studies shows a clear trend in MCE across US region/fire type: southeast (MCE = 0.933) > southwest (MCE = 0.922) > northwest (MCE = 0

  13. How risk management can prevent future wildfire disasters in the wildland-urban interface

    PubMed Central

    Calkin, David E.; Cohen, Jack D.; Finney, Mark A.; Thompson, Matthew P.

    2014-01-01

    Recent fire seasons in the western United States are some of the most damaging and costly on record. Wildfires in the wildland-urban interface on the Colorado Front Range, resulting in thousands of homes burned and civilian fatalities, although devastating, are not without historical reference. These fires are consistent with the characteristics of large, damaging, interface fires that threaten communities across much of the western United States. Wildfires are inevitable, but the destruction of homes, ecosystems, and lives is not. We propose the principles of risk analysis to provide land management agencies, first responders, and affected communities who face the inevitability of wildfires the ability to reduce the potential for loss. Overcoming perceptions of wildland-urban interface fire disasters as a wildfire control problem rather than a home ignition problem, determined by home ignition conditions, will reduce home loss. PMID:24344292

  14. How risk management can prevent future wildfire disasters in the wildland-urban interface.

    PubMed

    Calkin, David E; Cohen, Jack D; Finney, Mark A; Thompson, Matthew P

    2014-01-14

    Recent fire seasons in the western United States are some of the most damaging and costly on record. Wildfires in the wildland-urban interface on the Colorado Front Range, resulting in thousands of homes burned and civilian fatalities, although devastating, are not without historical reference. These fires are consistent with the characteristics of large, damaging, interface fires that threaten communities across much of the western United States. Wildfires are inevitable, but the destruction of homes, ecosystems, and lives is not. We propose the principles of risk analysis to provide land management agencies, first responders, and affected communities who face the inevitability of wildfires the ability to reduce the potential for loss. Overcoming perceptions of wildland-urban interface fire disasters as a wildfire control problem rather than a home ignition problem, determined by home ignition conditions, will reduce home loss.

  15. Detecting post-fire burn severity and vegetation recovery using multitemporal remote sensing spectral indices and field-collected composite burn index data in a ponderosa pine forest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chen, Xuexia; Vogelmann, James E.; Rollins, Matt; Ohlen, Donald; Key, Carl H.; Yang, Limin; Huang, Chengquan; Shi, Hua

    2011-01-01

    It is challenging to detect burn severity and vegetation recovery because of the relatively long time period required to capture the ecosystem characteristics. Multitemporal remote sensing data can providemultitemporal observations before, during and after a wildfire, and can improve the change detection accuracy. The goal of this study is to examine the correlations between multitemporal spectral indices and field-observed burn severity, and to provide a practical method to estimate burn severity and vegetation recovery. The study site is the Jasper Fire area in the Black Hills National Forest, South Dakota, that burned during August and September 2000. Six multitemporal Landsat images acquired from 2000 (pre-fire), 2001 (post-fire), 2002, 2003, 2005 and 2007 were used to assess burn severity. The normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), enhanced vegetation index (EVI), normalized burn ratio (NBR), integrated forest index (IFI) and the differences of these indices between the pre-fire and post-fire years were computed and analysed with 66 field-based composite burn index (CBI) plots collected in 2002. Results showed that differences of NDVI and differences of EVI between the pre-fire year and the first two years post-fire were highly correlated with the CBI scores. The correlations were low beyond the second year post-fire. Differences of NBR had good correlation with CBI scores in all study years. Differences of IFI had low correlation with CBI in the first year post-fire and had good correlation in later years. A CBI map of the burnt area was produced using regression tree models and the multitemporal images. The dynamics of four spectral indices from 2000 to 2007 indicated that both NBR and IFI are valuable for monitoring long-term vegetation recovery. The high burn severity areas had a much slower recovery than the moderate and low burn areas.

  16. SENTINEL-2A red-edge spectral indices suitability for discriminating burn severity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fernández-Manso, Alfonso; Fernández-Manso, Oscar; Quintano, Carmen

    2016-08-01

    Fires are a problematic and recurrent issue in Mediterranean ecosystems. Accurate discrimination between burn severity levels is essential for the rehabilitation planning of burned areas. Sentinel-2A MultiSpectral Instrument (MSI) record data in three red-edge wavelengths, spectral domain especially useful on agriculture and vegetation applications. Our objective is to find out whether Sentinel-2A MSI red-edge wavelengths are suitable for burn severity discrimination. As study area, we used the 2015 Sierra Gata wildfire (Spain) that burned approximately 80 km2. A Copernicus Emergency Management Service (EMS)-grading map with four burn severity levels was considered as reference truth. Cox and Snell, Nagelkerke and McFadde pseudo-R2 statistics obtained by Multinomial Logistic Regression showed the superiority of red-edge spectral indices (particularly, Modified Simple Ratio Red-edge, Chlorophyll Index Red-edge, Normalized Difference Vegetation Index Red-edge) over conventional spectral indices. Fisher's Least Significant Difference test confirmed that Sentinel-2A MSI red-edge spectral indices are adequate to discriminate four burn severity levels.

  17. Visualizing Earth's Erupting Volcanoes and Wildfires: Seven Years of Data From the Earth Observing Mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wright, R.; Pilger, E.; Flynn, L. P.; Harris, A. J.

    2006-12-01

    Volcanic eruptions and wildfires are natural hazards that are truly global in their geographic scope, as well as being temporally very dynamic. As such, satellite remote sensing lends itself to their effective detection and monitoring. The results of such mapping can be communicated in the form of traditional static maps. However, most hazards have strong time-dependent forcing mechanisms (in the case of biomass burning, climate) and the dynamism of these geophysical phenomena requires a suitable method for their presentation. Here, we present visualizations of the amount of thermal energy radiated by all of Earth's sub-aerially erupting volcanoes, wildfires and industrial heat sources over a seven year period. These visualizations condense the results obtained from the near-real-time analysis of over 1.2 million MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectro-radiometer) images, acquired from NASA's Terra and Aqua platforms. In the accompanying poster we will describe a) the raw data, b) how these data can be used to derive higher-order geophysical parameters, and c) how the visualization of these derived products adds scientific value to the raw data. The visualizations reveal spatio-temporal trends in fire radiated energy (and by proxy, biomass combustion rates and carbon emissions into the atmosphere), which are indiscernible in the static data set. Most notable are differences in biomass combustion between the North American and Eurasian Boreal forests. We also give examples relating to the development of lava flow-fields at Mount Etna (Italy) and Kilauea (USA), as well as variations in heat output from Iraqi oil fields, that span the onset of the 2003 Persian Gulf War. The raw data used to generate these visualizations are routinely made available via the Internet, as portable ASCII files. They can therefore be easily integrated with image datasets, by other researchers, to create their own visualizations.

  18. Factor Analysis of Wildfire and Risk Area Estimation in Korean Peninsula Using Maximum Entropy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Teayeon; Lim, Chul-Hee; Lee, Woo-Kyun; Kim, YouSeung; Heo, Seongbong; Cha, Sung Eun; Kim, Seajin

    2016-04-01

    The number of wildfires and accompanying human injuries and physical damages has been increased by frequent drought. Especially, Korea experienced severe drought and numbers of wildfire took effect this year. We used MaxEnt model to figure out major environmental factors for wildfire and used RCP scenarios to predict future wildfire risk area. In this study, environmental variables including topographic, anthropogenic, meteorologic data was used to figure out contributing variables of wildfire in South and North Korea, and compared accordingly. As for occurrence data, we used MODIS fire data after verification. In North Korea, AUC(Area Under the ROC Curve) value was 0.890 which was high enough to explain the distribution of wildfires. South Korea had low AUC value than North Korea and high mean standard deviation which means there is low anticipation to predict fire with same environmental variables. It is expected to enhance AUC value in South Korea with environmental variables such as distance from trails, wildfire management systems. For instance, fire occurred within DMZ(demilitarized zone, 4kms boundary from 38th parallel) has decisive influence on fire risk area in South Korea, but not in North Korea. The contribution of each environmental variables was more distributed among variables in North Korea than in South Korea. This means South Korea is dependent on few certain variables, and North Korea can be explained as number of variables with evenly distributed portions. Although the AUC value and standard deviation of South Korea was not high enough to predict wildfire, the result carries an significant meaning to figure out scientific and social matters that certain environmental variables has great weight by understanding their response curves. We also made future wildfire risk area map in whole Korean peninsula using the same model. In four RCP scenarios, it was found that severe climate change would lead wildfire risk area move north. Especially North

  19. A Five- Year CMAQ Model Performance for Wildfires and ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Biomass burning has been identified as an important contributor to the degradation of air quality because of its impact on ozone and particulate matter. Two components of the biomass burning inventory, wildfires and prescribed fires are routinely estimated in the national emissions inventory. However, there is a large amount of uncertainty in the development of these emission inventory sectors. We have completed a 5 year set of CMAQ model simulations (2008-2012) in which we have simulated regional air quality with and without the wildfire and prescribed fire inventory. We will examine CMAQ model performance over regions with significant PM2.5 and Ozone contribution from prescribed fires and wildfires. The National Exposure Research Laboratory (NERL) Computational Exposure Division (CED) develops and evaluates data, decision-support tools, and models to be applied to media-specific or receptor-specific problem areas. CED uses modeling-based approaches to characterize exposures, evaluate fate and transport, and support environmental diagnostics/forensics with input from multiple data sources. It also develops media- and receptor-specific models, process models, and decision support tools for use both within and outside of EPA.

  20. UAS Developments Supporting Wildfire Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ambrosia, V. G.; Dahlgren, R. P.; Watts, A.; Reynolds, K. W.; Ball, T.

    2014-12-01

    Wildfires are regularly occurring emergency events that threaten life, property, and natural resources in every U.S. State and many countries around the world. Despite projections that $1.8 billion will be spent by U.S. Federal agencies alone on wildfires in 2014, the decades-long trend of increasing fire size, severity, and cost is expected to continue. Furthermore, the enormous potential for UAS (and concomitant sensor systems) to serve as geospatial intelligence tools to improve the safety and effectiveness of fire management, and our ability to forecast fire and smoke movements, remains barely tapped. Although orbital sensor assets are can provide the geospatial extent of wildfires, generally those resources are limited in use due to their spatial and temporal resolution limitations. These two critical elements make orbital assets of limited utility for tactical, real-time wildfire management, or for continuous scientific analysis of the temporal dynamics related to fire energy release rates and plume concentrations that vary significantly thru a fire's progression. Large UAS platforms and sensors can and have been used to monitor wildfire events at improved temporal, spatial and radiometric scales, but more focus is being placed on the use of small UAS (sUAS) and sensors to support wildfire observation strategies. The use of sUAS is therefore more critical for TACTICAL management purposes, rather than strategic observations, where small-scale fire developments are critical to understand. This paper will highlight the historical development and use of UAS for fire observations, as well as the current shift in focus to smaller, more affordable UAS for more rapid integration into operational use on wildfire events to support tactical observation strategies, and support wildfire science measurement inprovements.

  1. Current research issues related to post-wildfire runoff and erosion processes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Moody, John A.; Shakesby, Richard A.; Robichaud, Peter R.; Cannon, Susan H.; Martin, Deborah A.

    2013-01-01

    Research into post-wildfire effects began in the United States more than 70 years ago and only later extended to other parts of the world. Post-wildfire responses are typically transient, episodic, variable in space and time, dependent on thresholds, and involve multiple processes measured by different methods. These characteristics tend to hinder research progress, but the large empirical knowledge base amassed in different regions of the world suggests that it should now be possible to synthesize the data and make a substantial improvement in the understanding of post-wildfire runoff and erosion response. Thus, it is important to identify and prioritize the research issues related to post-wildfire runoff and erosion. Priority research issues are the need to: (1) organize and synthesize similarities and differences in post-wildfire responses between different fire-prone regions of the world in order to determine common patterns and generalities that can explain cause and effect relations; (2) identify and quantify functional relations between metrics of fire effects and soil hydraulic properties that will better represent the dynamic and transient conditions after a wildfire; (3) determine the interaction between burned landscapes and temporally and spatially variable meso-scale precipitation, which is often the primary driver of post-wildfire runoff and erosion responses; (4) determine functional relations between precipitation, basin morphology, runoff connectivity, contributing area, surface roughness, depression storage, and soil characteristics required to predict the timing, magnitudes, and duration of floods and debris flows from ungaged burned basins; and (5) develop standard measurement methods that will ensure the collection of uniform and comparable runoff and erosion data. Resolution of these issues will help to improve conceptual and computer models of post-wildfire runoff and erosion processes.

  2. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Buckweed Fire Perimeter, Green Valley Quadrangle, Los Angeles County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  3. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Ranch Fire Perimeter, Piru Quadrangle, Ventura County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  4. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Poomacha Fire Perimeter, Pala Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  5. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Santiago Fire Perimeter, Tustin Quadrangle, Orange County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  6. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Harris Fire Perimeter, Morena Reservoir Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  7. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Buckweed Fire Perimeter, Sleepy Valley Quadrangle, Los Angeles County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  8. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Poomacha Fire Perimeter, Palomar Observatory Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  9. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Slide Fire Perimeter, Harrison Mountain Quadrangle, San Bernardino County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  10. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Harris Fire Perimeter, Otay Mountain Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  11. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Harris Fire Perimeter, Tecate Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  12. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Witch Fire Perimeter, Poway Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  13. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Harris Fire Perimeter, Otay Mesa Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  14. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Rice Fire Perimeter, Bonsall Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  15. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Ranch Fire Perimeter, Fillmore Quadrangle, Ventura County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  16. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Ammo Fire Perimeter, Margarita Peak Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  17. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Slide Fire Perimeter, Butler Peak Quadrangle, San Bernardino County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  18. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Cajon Fire Perimeter, Devore Quadrangle, San Bernardino County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  19. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Harris Fire Perimeter, Barrett Lake Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  20. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Canyon Fire Perimeter, Malibu Beach Quadrangle, Los Angeles County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  1. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Harris Fire Perimeter, Dulzura Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  2. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Witch Fire Perimeter, Escondido Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  3. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Witch Fire Perimeter, Santa Ysabel Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  4. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Witch Fire Perimeter, San Pasqual Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  5. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Witch Fire Perimeter, Ramona Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  6. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Harris Fire Perimeter, Jamul Mountains Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  7. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Witch Fire Perimeter, Warners Ranch Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  8. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Poomacha Fire Perimeter, Boucher Hill Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  9. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Buckweed Fire Perimeter, Agua Dulce Quadrangle, Los Angeles County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  10. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Buckweed Fire Perimeter, Mint Canyon Quadrangle, Los Angeles County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  11. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Harris Fire Perimeter, Potrero Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  12. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Witch Fire Perimeter, Tule Springs Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  13. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Slide Fire Perimeter, Keller Peak Quadrangle, San Bernardino County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  14. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Santiago Fire Perimeter, Orange Quadrangle, Orange County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  15. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Santiago Fire Perimeter, Lake Forest Quadrangle, Orange County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  16. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Witch Fire Perimeter, Valley Center Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  17. AmeriFlux US-Me1 Metolius - Eyerly burn

    DOE Data Explorer

    Law, Bev [Oregon State University

    2016-01-01

    This is the AmeriFlux version of the carbon flux data for the site US-Me1 Metolius - Eyerly burn. Site Description - An intermediate aged ponderosa pine forest that was severely burned in the 2002 Eyerly wildfire. All trees were killed (stand replacing event). Irvine et al (2007) GCB 13 (8), 1748–1760.

  18. Effects of wildfire on source-water quality and aquatic ecosystems, Colorado Front Range

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Writer, Jeffrey H.; McClelskey, R. Blaine; Murphy, Sheila F.

    2012-01-01

    Watershed erosion can dramatically increase after wildfire, but limited research has evaluated the corresponding influence on source-water quality. This study evaluated the effects of the Fourmile Canyon wildfire (Colorado Front Range, USA) on source-water quality and aquatic ecosystems using high-frequency sampling. Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and nutrient loads in stream water were evaluated for a one-year period during different types of runoff events, including spring snowmelt, and both frontal and summer convective storms. DOC export from the burned watershed did not increase relative to the unburned watershed during spring snowmelt, but substantial increases in DOC export were observed during summer convective storms. Elevated nutrient export from the burned watershed was observed during spring snowmelt and summer convective storms, which increased the primary productivity of stream biofilms. Wildfire effects on source-water quality were shown to be substantial following high-intensity storms, with the potential to affect drinking-water treatment processes.

  19. Emergency Assessment of Debris-Flow Hazards from Basins Burned by the 2007 Ammo Fire, San Diego County, Southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cannon, Susan H.; Gartner, Joseph E.; Michael, John A.; Bauer, Mark A.; Stitt, Susan C.; Knifong, Donna L.; McNamara, Bernard J.; Roque, Yvonne M.

    2007-01-01

    INTRODUCTION The objective of this report is to present a preliminary emergency assessment of the potential for debris-flow generation from basins burned by the Ammo Fire in San Diego County, southern California in 2007. Debris flows are among the most hazardous geologic phenomena; debris flows that followed wildfires in southern California in 2003 killed 16 people and caused tens of millions of dollars of property damage. A short period of even moderate rainfall on a burned watershed can lead to debris flows. Rainfall that is normally absorbed into hillslope soils can run off almost instantly after vegetation has been removed by wildfire. This causes much greater and more rapid runoff than is normal from creeks and drainage areas. Highly erodible soils in a burn scar allow flood waters to entrain large amounts of ash, mud, boulders, and unburned vegetation. Within the burned area and downstream, the force of rushing water, soil, and rock can destroy culverts, bridges, roadways, and buildings, potentially causing injury or death. This emergency debris-flow hazard assessment is presented as relative ranking of the predicted median volume of debris flows that can issue from basin outlets in response to 1.75 inches (44.45 mm) of rainfall over a 3-hour period. Such a storm has a 10-year return period. The calculation of debris flow volume is based on a multiple-regression statistical model that describes the median volume of material that can be expected from a recently burned basin as a function of the area burned at high and moderate severity, the basin area with slopes greater than or equal to 30 percent, and triggering storm rainfall. Cannon and others (2007) describe the methods used to generate the hazard maps. Identification of potential debris-flow hazards from burned drainage basins is necessary to issue warnings for specific basins, to make effective mitigation decisions, and to help plan evacuation timing and routes.

  20. Emergency Assessment of Debris-Flow Hazards from Basins Burned by the 2007 Buckweed Fire, Los Angeles County, Southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cannon, Susan H.; Gartner, Joseph E.; Michael, John A.; Bauer, Mark A.; Stitt, Susan C.; Knifong, Donna L.; McNamara, Bernard J.; Roque, Yvonne M.

    2007-01-01

    INTRODUCTION The objective of this report is to present a preliminary emergency assessment of the potential for debris-flow generation from basins burned by the Buckweed Fire in Los Angeles County, southern California in 2007. Debris flows are among the most hazardous geologic phenomena; debris flows that followed wildfires in southern California in 2003 killed 16 people and caused tens of millions of dollars of property damage. A short period of even moderate rainfall on a burned watershed can lead to debris flows. Rainfall that is normally absorbed into hillslope soils can run off almost instantly after vegetation has been removed by wildfire. This causes much greater and more rapid runoff than is normal from creeks and drainage areas. Highly erodible soils in a burn scar allow flood waters to entrain large amounts of ash, mud, boulders, and unburned vegetation. Within the burned area and downstream, the force of rushing water, soil, and rock can destroy culverts, bridges, roadways, and buildings, potentially causing injury or death. This emergency debris-flow hazard assessment is presented as relative ranking of the predicted median volume of debris flows that can issue from basin outlets in response to 2.25 inches (57.15 mm) of rainfall over a 3-hour period. Such a storm has a 10-year return period. The calculation of debris flow volume is based on a multiple-regression statistical model that describes the median volume of material that can be expected from a recently burned basin as a function of the area burned at high and moderate severity, the basin area with slopes greater than or equal to 30 percent, and triggering storm rainfall. Cannon and others (2007) describe the methods used to generate the hazard maps. Identification of potential debris-flow hazards from burned drainage basins is necessary to issue warnings for specific basins, to make effective mitigation decisions, and to help plan evacuation timing and routes.

  1. Emergency Assessment of Debris-Flow Hazards from Basins Burned by the 2007 Rice Fire, San Diego County, Southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cannon, Susan H.; Gartner, Joseph E.; Michael, John A.; Bauer, Mark A.; Stitt, Susan C.; Knifong, Donna L.; McNamara, Bernard J.; Roque, Yvonne M.

    2007-01-01

    INTRODUCTION The objective of this report is to present a preliminary emergency assessment of the potential for debris-flow generation from basins burned by the Rice Fire in San Diego County, southern California in 2007. Debris flows are among the most hazardous geologic phenomena; debris flows that followed wildfires in southern California in 2003 killed 16 people and caused tens of millions of dollars of property damage. A short period of even moderate rainfall on a burned watershed can lead to debris flows. Rainfall that is normally absorbed into hillslope soils can run off almost instantly after vegetation has been removed by wildfire. This causes much greater and more rapid runoff than is normal from creeks and drainage areas. Highly erodible soils in a burn scar allow flood waters to entrain large amounts of ash, mud, boulders, and unburned vegetation. Within the burned area and downstream, the force of rushing water, soil, and rock can destroy culverts, bridges, roadways, and buildings, potentially causing injury or death. This emergency debris-flow hazard assessment is presented as relative ranking of the predicted median volume of debris flows that can issue from basin outlets in response to 1.75 inches (44.45 mm) of rainfall over a 3-hour period. Such a storm has a 10-year return period. The calculation of debris flow volume is based on a multiple-regression statistical model that describes the median volume of material that can be expected from a recently burned basin as a function of the area burned at high and moderate severity, the basin area with slopes greater than or equal to 30 percent, and triggering storm rainfall. Cannon and others (2007) describe the methods used to generate the hazard maps. Identification of potential debris-flow hazards from burned drainage basins is necessary to issue warnings for specific basins, to make effective mitigation decisions, and to help plan evacuation timing and routes.

  2. Emergency Assessment of Debris-Flow Hazards from Basins Burned by the 2007 Harris Fire, San Diego County, Southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cannon, Susan H.; Gartner, Joseph E.; Michael, John A.; Bauer, Mark A.; Stitt, Susan C.; Knifong, Donna L.; McNamara, Bernard J.; Roque, Yvonne M.

    2007-01-01

    INTRODUCTION The objective of this report is to present a preliminary emergency assessment of the potential for debris-flow generation from basins burned by the Harris Fire in San Diego County, southern California in 2007. Debris flows are among the most hazardous geologic phenomena; debris flows that followed wildfires in southern California in 2003 killed 16 people and caused tens of millions of dollars of property damage. A short period of even moderate rainfall on a burned watershed can lead to debris flows. Rainfall that is normally absorbed into hillslope soils can run off almost instantly after vegetation has been removed by wildfire. This causes much greater and more rapid runoff than is normal from creeks and drainage areas. Highly erodible soils in a burn scar allow flood waters to entrain large amounts of ash, mud, boulders, and unburned vegetation. Within the burned area and downstream, the force of rushing water, soil, and rock can destroy culverts, bridges, roadways, and buildings, potentially causing injury or death. This emergency debris-flow hazard assessment is presented as relative ranking of the predicted median volume of debris flows that can issue from basin outlets in response to 1.75 inches (44.45 mm) of rainfall over a 3-hour period. Such a storm has a 10-year return period. The calculation of debris flow volume is based on a multiple-regression statistical model that describes the median volume of material that can be expected from a recently burned basin as a function of the area burned at high and moderate severity, the basin area with slopes greater than or equal to 30 percent, and triggering storm rainfall. Cannon and others (2007) describe the methods used to generate the hazard maps. Identification of potential debris-flow hazards from burned drainage basins is necessary to issue warnings for specific basins, to make effective mitigation decisions, and to help plan evacuation timing and routes.

  3. Emergency Assessment of Debris-Flow Hazards from Basins Burned by the 2007 Witch Fire, San Diego County, Southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cannon, Susan H.; Gartner, Joseph E.; Michael, John A.; Bauer, Mark A.; Stitt, Susan C.; Knifong, Donna L.; McNamara, Bernard J.; Roque, Yvonne M.

    2007-01-01

    INTRODUCTION The objective of this report is to present a preliminary emergency assessment of the potential for debris-flow generation from basins burned by the Witch Fire in San Diego County, southern California in 2007. Debris flows are among the most hazardous geologic phenomena; debris flows that followed wildfires in southern California in 2003 killed 16 people and caused tens of millions of dollars of property damage. A short period of even moderate rainfall on a burned watershed can lead to debris flows. Rainfall that is normally absorbed into hillslope soils can run off almost instantly after vegetation has been removed by wildfire. This causes much greater and more rapid runoff than is normal from creeks and drainage areas. Highly erodible soils in a burn scar allow flood waters to entrain large amounts of ash, mud, boulders, and unburned vegetation. Within the burned area and downstream, the force of rushing water, soil, and rock can destroy culverts, bridges, roadways, and buildings, potentially causing injury or death. This emergency debris-flow hazard assessment is presented as relative ranking of the predicted median volume of debris flows that can issue from basin outlets in response to 2.25 inches (57.15 mm) of rainfall over a 3-hour period. Such a storm has a 10-year return period. The calculation of debris flow volume is based on a multiple-regression statistical model that describes the median volume of material that can be expected from a recently burned basin as a function of the area burned at high and moderate severity, the basin area with slopes greater than or equal to 30 percent, and triggering storm rainfall. Cannon and others (2007) describe the methods used to generate the hazard maps. Identification of potential debris-flow hazards from burned drainage basins is necessary to issue warnings for specific basins, to make effective mitigation decisions, and to help plan evacuation timing and routes.

  4. Emergency Assessment of Debris-Flow Hazards from Basins Burned by the 2007 Santiago Fire, Orange County, Southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cannon, Susan H.; Gartner, Joseph E.; Michael, John A.; Bauer, Mark A.; Stitt, Susan C.; Knifong, Donna L.; McNamara, Bernard J.; Roque, Yvonne M.

    2007-01-01

    INTRODUCTION The objective of this report is to present a preliminary emergency assessment of the potential for debris-flow generation from basins burned by the Santiago Fire in Orange County, southern California in 2007. Debris flows are among the most hazardous geologic phenomena; debris flows that followed wildfires in southern California in 2003 killed 16 people and caused tens of millions of dollars of property damage. A short period of even moderate rainfall on a burned watershed can lead to debris flows. Rainfall that is normally absorbed into hillslope soils can run off almost instantly after vegetation has been removed by wildfire. This causes much greater and more rapid runoff than is normal from creeks and drainage areas. Highly erodible soils in a burn scar allow flood waters to entrain large amounts of ash, mud, boulders, and unburned vegetation. Within the burned area and downstream, the force of rushing water, soil, and rock can destroy culverts, bridges, roadways, and buildings, potentially causing injury or death. This emergency debris-flow hazard assessment is presented as relative ranking of the predicted median volume of debris flows that can issue from basin outlets in response to 1.75 inches (44.45 mm) of rainfall over a 3-hour period. Such a storm has a 10-year return period. The calculation of debris flow volume is based on a multiple-regression statistical model that describes the median volume of material that can be expected from a recently burned basin as a function of the area burned at high and moderate severity, the basin area with slopes greater than or equal to 30 percent, and triggering storm rainfall. Cannon and others (2007) describe the methods used to generate the hazard maps. Identification of potential debris-flow hazards from burned drainage basins is necessary to issue warnings for specific basins, to make effective mitigation decisions, and to help plan evacuation timing and routes.

  5. Emergency Assessment of Debris-Flow Hazards from Basins Burned by the 2007 Poomacha Fire, San Diego County, Southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cannon, Susan H.; Gartner, Joseph E.; Michael, John A.; Bauer, Mark A.; Stitt, Susan C.; Knifong, Donna L.; McNamara, Bernard J.; Roque, Yvonne M.

    2007-01-01

    INTRODUCTION The objective of this report is to present a preliminary emergency assessment of the potential for debris-flow generation from basins burned by the Poomacha Fire in San Diego County, southern California in 2007. Debris flows are among the most hazardous geologic phenomena; debris flows that followed wildfires in southern California in 2003 killed 16 people and caused tens of millions of dollars of property damage. A short period of even moderate rainfall on a burned watershed can lead to debris flows. Rainfall that is normally absorbed into hillslope soils can run off almost instantly after vegetation has been removed by wildfire. This causes much greater and more rapid runoff than is normal from creeks and drainage areas. Highly erodible soils in a burn scar allow flood waters to entrain large amounts of ash, mud, boulders, and unburned vegetation. Within the burned area and downstream, the force of rushing water, soil, and rock can destroy culverts, bridges, roadways, and buildings, potentially causing injury or death. This emergency debris-flow hazard assessment is presented as relative ranking of the predicted median volume of debris flows that can issue from basin outlets in response to 2.25 inches (57.15 mm) of rainfall over a 3-hour period. Such a storm has a 10-year return period. The calculation of debris flow volume is based on a multiple-regression statistical model that describes the median volume of material that can be expected from a recently burned basin as a function of the area burned at high and moderate severity, the basin area with slopes greater than or equal to 30 percent, and triggering storm rainfall. Cannon and others (2007) describe the methods used to generate the hazard maps. Identification of potential debris-flow hazards from burned drainage basins is necessary to issue warnings for specific basins, to make effective mitigation decisions, and to help plan evacuation timing and routes.

  6. Emergency Assessment of Debris-Flow Hazards from Basins Burned by the 2007 Canyon Fire, Los Angeles County, Southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cannon, Susan H.; Gartner, Joseph E.; Michael, John A.; Bauer, Mark A.; Stitt, Susan C.; Knifong, Donna L.; McNamara, Bernard J.; Roque, Yvonne M.

    2007-01-01

    INTRODUCTION The objective of this report is to present a preliminary emergency assessment of the potential for debris-flow generation from basins burned by the Canyon Fire in Los Angeles County, southern California in 2007. Debris flows are among the most hazardous geologic phenomena; debris flows that followed wildfires in southern California in 2003 killed 16 people and caused tens of millions of dollars of property damage. A short period of even moderate rainfall on a burned watershed can lead to debris flows. Rainfall that is normally absorbed into hillslope soils can run off almost instantly after vegetation has been removed by wildfire. This causes much greater and more rapid runoff than is normal from creeks and drainage areas. Highly erodible soils in a burn scar allow flood waters to entrain large amounts of ash, mud, boulders, and unburned vegetation. Within the burned area and downstream, the force of rushing water, soil, and rock can destroy culverts, bridges, roadways, and buildings, potentially causing injury or death. This emergency debris-flow hazard assessment is presented as relative ranking of the predicted median volume of debris flows that can issue from basin outlets in response to 2.25 inches (57.15 mm) of rainfall over a 3-hour period. Such a storm has a 10-year return period. The calculation of debris flow volume is based on a multiple-regression statistical model that describes the median volume of material that can be expected from a recently burned basin as a function of the area burned at high and moderate severity, the basin area with slopes greater than or equal to 30 percent, and triggering storm rainfall. Cannon and others (2007) describe the methods used to generate the hazard maps. Identification of potential debris-flow hazards from burned drainage basins is necessary to issue warnings for specific basins, to make effective mitigation decisions, and to help plan evacuation timing and routes.

  7. Impacts of upwind wildfire emissions on CO, CO2, and PM2.5 concentrations in Salt Lake City, Utah

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mallia, D. V.; Lin, J. C.; Urbanski, S.; Ehleringer, J.; Nehrkorn, T.

    2015-01-01

    burning is known to contribute large quantities of CO2, CO, and PM2.5 to the atmosphere. Biomass burning not only affects the area in the vicinity of fire but may also impact the air quality far downwind from the fire. The 2007 and 2012 western U.S. wildfire seasons were characterized by significant wildfire activity across much of the Intermountain West and California. In this study, we determined the locations of wildfire-derived emissions and their aggregate impacts on Salt Lake City, a major urban center downwind of the fires. To determine the influences of biomass burning emissions, we initiated an ensemble of stochastic back trajectories at the Salt Lake City receptor within the Stochastic Time-Inverted Lagrangian Transport (STILT) model, driven by wind fields from the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model. The trajectories were combined with a new, high-resolution biomass burning emissions inventory—the Wildfire Emissions Inventory. Initial results showed that the WRF-STILT model was able to replicate many periods of enhanced wildfire activity observed in the measurements. Most of the contributions for the 2007 and 2012 wildfire seasons originated from fires located in Utah and central Idaho. The model results suggested that during intense episodes of upwind wildfires in 2007 and 2012, fires contributed as much as 250 ppb of CO during a 3 h period and 15 µg/m3 of PM2.5 averaged over 24 h at Salt Lake City. Wildfires had a much smaller impact on CO2 concentrations in Salt Lake City, with contributions rarely exceeding 2 ppm enhancements.

  8. Comparative In Vivo and Ex Vivo Toxicity Studies of Wildfire Particulate Matter

    EPA Science Inventory

    Inhalation of particulate matter (PM) generated from biomass burning is of concern particularly as the frequency and severity of wildfires have been increasing. Size-fractionated PM samples (ultrafine, <0.2 µm; fine, 0.2-2.5 µm; coarse, 2.5-10 µm) were colle...

  9. Airborne measurements of gases and particles from an Alaskan wildfire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nance, J. D.; Hobbs, Peter V.; Radke, Lawrence F.; Ward, Darold E.

    1993-08-01

    Airborne measurements of several gaseous and particulate chemical species were obtained in the emissions from a wildfire that burned in an old black spruce forest in Alaska during the summer of 1990. The relative proportions of most of the measured plume constituents are consistent with ground-based and airborne measurements in the plumes of several other biomass fires, and with laboratory measurements. Possible exceptions include the mean fine-particle emission factor, which was about 3 times larger than predicted from a regression relation based on measurements of the smoke from several prescribed biomass fires, and the mean CH4/CO molar emission ratio which was at the low end of a range of values measured for other biomass fires. Measurements of water-soluble particulate ions in the smoke plume from the Alaskan wildfire indicate that acids formed from the oxides of sulphur and nitrogen were partially neutralized inside cloud droplets by NH3 absorbed from the plume.

  10. Wildfire and aspect effects on hydrologic states after the 2010 Fourmile Canyon Fire

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ebel, Brian A.

    2013-01-01

    Wildfire can change how soils take in, store, and release water. This study examined differences in how burned and unburned plots on north versus south-facing slope aspects respond to rainfall. The largest wildfire impacts were litter/duff combustion on burned north-facing slopes versus soil-water retention reduction on burned south-facing slopes.Wildfire is one of the most significant disturbances in mountainous landscapes, affecting water supply and ecologic function and setting the stage for natural hazards such as flash floods. The impacts of wildfire can affect the entire hydrologic cycle. Measurements of soil-water content and matric potential in the near surface (top 30 cm) captured the hydrologic state in both burned and unburned hillslopes during the first spring through fall period (1 June–1 Oct. 2011) after the 2010 Fourmile Canyon Fire near Boulder, CO. This time span included different hydrologic periods characterized by cyclonic frontal storms (low-intensity, long duration), convective storms (high-intensity, short duration), and dry periods. In mountainous environments, aspect can also control hydrologic states, so north- vs. south-facing slopes were compared. Wildfire tended to homogenize soil-water contents across aspects and with depth in the soil, yet it also may have introduced an aspect control on matric potential that was not observed in unburned soils. Post-wildfire changes in hydrologic state were observed in south-facing soils, probably reflecting decreased soil-water retention after wildfire. North-facing soils were impacted the most, in terms of hydrologic state, by the loss of water storage in the combusted litter–duff layer and forest canopy, which had provided a large “hydrologic buffering” capacity when unburned. Unsaturated zone measurements showed increased variability in hydrologic states and more rapid state transitions in wildfire-impacted soils. A simple, qualitative analysis suggested that the range of unsaturated

  11. Global Pyrogeography: the Current and Future Distribution of Wildfire

    PubMed Central

    Krawchuk, Meg A.; Moritz, Max A.; Parisien, Marc-André; Van Dorn, Jeff; Hayhoe, Katharine

    2009-01-01

    Climate change is expected to alter the geographic distribution of wildfire, a complex abiotic process that responds to a variety of spatial and environmental gradients. How future climate change may alter global wildfire activity, however, is still largely unknown. As a first step to quantifying potential change in global wildfire, we present a multivariate quantification of environmental drivers for the observed, current distribution of vegetation fires using statistical models of the relationship between fire activity and resources to burn, climate conditions, human influence, and lightning flash rates at a coarse spatiotemporal resolution (100 km, over one decade). We then demonstrate how these statistical models can be used to project future changes in global fire patterns, highlighting regional hotspots of change in fire probabilities under future climate conditions as simulated by a global climate model. Based on current conditions, our results illustrate how the availability of resources to burn and climate conditions conducive to combustion jointly determine why some parts of the world are fire-prone and others are fire-free. In contrast to any expectation that global warming should necessarily result in more fire, we find that regional increases in fire probabilities may be counter-balanced by decreases at other locations, due to the interplay of temperature and precipitation variables. Despite this net balance, our models predict substantial invasion and retreat of fire across large portions of the globe. These changes could have important effects on terrestrial ecosystems since alteration in fire activity may occur quite rapidly, generating ever more complex environmental challenges for species dispersing and adjusting to new climate conditions. Our findings highlight the potential for widespread impacts of climate change on wildfire, suggesting severely altered fire regimes and the need for more explicit inclusion of fire in research on global

  12. The Effects of Wildfire on Soil Moisture Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kanarek, M.; Cardenas, M.

    2013-12-01

    Moisture dynamics in the critical zone have significant implications for a variety of hydrologic processes, from water availability to plants to infiltration and groundwater recharge rates. These processes are perturbed by events such as wildfires, which may have long-lasting impacts. In September 2011, the most destructive wildfire in Texas history occurred in and around Bastrop State Park, which was significantly affected; thus we take advantage of a rare opportunity to study soil moisture under such burned conditions. A 165 m long transect bridging burned and unburned areas was established within the 'Lost Pines' of the park. Soil moisture and soil temperature were monitored and estimated using a variety of methods, including 2D electrical resistivity imaging (using dipole-dipole and Schlumberger configurations), surface permittivity measurements (ThetaProbe), permittivity-based soil moisture profiling (PR2 profile probes), and installation of thermistors. Field measurements were collected at approximately one-month intervals to study temporal and seasonal effects on soil moisture and temperature in this area. Greater soil moisture and lower resistivity were found near the surface at the heavily burned end of the transect, where trees have been largely killed by the fire and grasses now dominate, and very low near-surface soil moisture and higher resistivity were found at the opposite end, which is still populated by pine trees. These variations can likely be attributed to the vegetative variations between the two ends of the transect, with trees consuming more water at one end and the ground cover of grasses and mosses consuming less water and helping reduce evaporation at the burned end. Higher clay content at the burned end of the transect could also be a factor in greater soil moisture retention there. Given the higher moisture content throughout the soil profile at the heavily burned end of the transect, this could be an indication of greater infiltration

  13. Assessing burn severity and comparing soil water repellency, Hayman Fire, Colorado

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lewis, Sarah A.; Wu, Joan Q.; Robichaud, Peter R.

    2006-01-01

    An important element of evaluating a large wildfire is to assess its effects on the soil in order to predict the potential watershed response. After the 55 000 ha Hayman Fire on the Colorado Front Range, 24 soil and vegetation variables were measured to determine the key variables that could be used for a rapid field assessment of burn severity. The percentage of exposed mineral soil and litter cover proved to be the best predictors of burn severity in this environment. Two burn severity classifications, one from a statistical classification tree and the other a Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) burn severity map, were compared with measured ground truth burn severity at 183 plots and were 56% and 69% accurate, respectively.This study also compared water repellency measurements made with the water drop penetration time (WDPT) test and a mini-disk infiltrometer (MDI) test. At the soil surface, the moderate and highly burned sites had the strongest water repellency, yet were not significantly different from each other. Areas burned at moderate severity had 1.5 times more plots that were strongly water repellent at the surface than the areas burned at high severity. However, the high severity plots most likely had a deeper water repellent layer that was not detected with our surface tests. The WDPT and MDI values had an overall correlation of r = -0.64(p < 0.0001) and appeared to be compatible methods for assessing soil water repellency in the field. Both tests represent point measurements of a soil characteristic that has large spatial variability; hence, results from both tests reflect that variability, accounting for much of the remaining variance. The MDI is easier to use, takes about 1 min to assess a strongly water repellent soil and provides two indicators of water repellency: the time to start of infiltration and a relative infiltration rate.

  14. Drinking water treatment response following a Colorado wildfire.

    PubMed

    Hohner, Amanda K; Cawley, Kaelin; Oropeza, Jill; Summers, R Scott; Rosario-Ortiz, Fernando L

    2016-11-15

    Wildfires can greatly alter the vegetation, soils, and hydrologic processes of watersheds serving as drinking water supplies, which may negatively influence source water quality and treatment. To address wildfire impacts on treatment, a drinking water intake below a burned watershed and an upstream, unburned reference site were monitored following the High Park wildfire (2012) in the Cache la Poudre watershed of northern Colorado, USA. Turbidity, nutrients, dissolved organic matter (DOM) character, coagulation treatability, and disinfection byproduct formation were evaluated and compared to pre-fire data. Post-fire paired spatial differences between the treatment plant intake and reference site for turbidity, nitrogen, and phosphorus increased by an order of magnitude compared to pre-fire differences. Fluorescence index (FI) values were significantly higher at the intake compared to the reference site (Δ = 0.04), and higher than pre-fire years, suggesting the wildfire altered the DOM character of the river. Total trihalomethane (TTHM) and haloacetonitrile (HAN4) formation at the intake were 10.1 μg L(-1) and 0.91 μg L(-1) higher than the reference site. Post-fire water was amenable to conventional treatment at a 10 mg L(-1) higher average alum dose than reference samples. The intake was also monitored following rainstorms. Post-rainstorm samples showed the maximum observed FI values (1.52), HAN4 (3.4 μg mgC(-1)) and chloropicrin formation yields (3.6 μg mgC(-1)), whereas TTHM and haloacetic acid yields were not elevated. Several post-rainstorm samples presented treatment challenges, and even at high alum doses (65 mg L(-1)), showed minimal dissolved organic carbon removal (<10%). The degraded water quality of the post-rainstorm samples is likely attributed to the combined effects of runoff from precipitation and greater erosion following wildfire. Wildfire impacts cannot be separated from rainfall effects due to the lack of post-rainstorm samples from

  15. Emissions from Combustion of Open Area Sources: Prescribed Forest and Agricultural Burns

    EPA Science Inventory

    Emissions from wildfires and prescribed forest and agricultural burns generate a variety of emissions that can cause adverse health effects for humans, contribute to climate change, and decrease visibility. Only limited pollutant data are available for these sources, particularly...

  16. Landscape effects of wildfire on permafrost distribution in interior Alaska derived from remote sensing

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brown, Dana R. N.; Jorgenson, M. Torre; Kielland, Knut; Verbyla, David L.; Prakash, Anupma; Koch, Joshua C.

    2016-01-01

    Climate change coupled with an intensifying wildfire regime is becoming an important driver of permafrost loss and ecosystem change in the northern boreal forest. There is a growing need to understand the effects of fire on the spatial distribution of permafrost and its associated ecological consequences. We focus on the effects of fire a decade after disturbance in a rocky upland landscape in the interior Alaskan boreal forest. Our main objectives were to (1) map near-surface permafrost distribution and drainage classes and (2) analyze the controls over landscape-scale patterns of post-fire permafrost degradation. Relationships among remote sensing variables and field-based data on soil properties (temperature, moisture, organic layer thickness) and vegetation (plant community composition) were analyzed using correlation, regression, and ordination analyses. The remote sensing data we considered included spectral indices from optical datasets (Landsat 7 Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+) and Landsat 8 Operational Land Imager (OLI)), the principal components of a time series of radar backscatter (Advanced Land Observing Satellite—Phased Array type L-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (ALOS-PALSAR)), and topographic variables from a Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR)-derived digital elevation model (DEM). We found strong empirical relationships between the normalized difference infrared index (NDII) and post-fire vegetation, soil moisture, and soil temperature, enabling us to indirectly map permafrost status and drainage class using regression-based models. The thickness of the insulating surface organic layer after fire, a measure of burn severity, was an important control over the extent of permafrost degradation. According to our classifications, 90% of the area considered to have experienced high severity burn (using the difference normalized burn ratio (dNBR)) lacked permafrost after fire. Permafrost thaw, in turn, likely increased drainage and resulted in

  17. Forest Structure Affects Soil Mercury Losses in the Presence and Absence of Wildfire.

    PubMed

    Homann, Peter S; Darbyshire, Robyn L; Bormann, Bernard T; Morrissette, Brett A

    2015-11-03

    Soil is an important, dynamic component of regional and global mercury (Hg) cycles. This study evaluated how changes in forest soil Hg masses caused by atmospheric deposition and wildfire are affected by forest structure. Pre and postfire soil Hg measurements were made over two decades on replicate experimental units of three prefire forest structures (mature unthinned, mature thinned, clear-cut) in Douglas-fir dominated forest of southwestern Oregon. In the absence of wildfire, O-horizon Hg decreased by 60% during the 14 years after clearcutting, possibly the result of decreased atmospheric deposition due to the smaller-stature vegetative canopy; in contrast, no change was observed in mature unthinned and thinned forest. Wildfire decreased O-horizon Hg by >88% across all forest structures and decreased mineral-soil (0 to 66 mm depth) Hg by 50% in thinned forest and clear-cut. The wildfire-associated soil Hg loss was positively related to the amount of surface fine wood that burned during the fire, the proportion of area that burned at >700 °C, fire severity as indicated by tree mortality, and soil C loss. Loss of soil Hg due to the 200,000 ha wildfire was more than four times the annual atmospheric Hg emissions from human activities in Oregon.

  18. Stable isotope analysis of energy dynamics in aquatic ecosystems suggests trophic shifts following severe wildfire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martens, A. M.; Silins, U.; Bladon, K. D.; Williams, C.; Wagner, M. J.; Luchkow, E.

    2015-12-01

    Wildfire alters landscapes and can have significant impacts on stream ecosystems. The 2003 Lost Creek wildfire was one of the most severe on Alberta's eastern rocky mountain slopes, resulting in elevated sediment production and nutrient (phosphorus, nitrogen, and carbon) export in impacted streams. These resulted in increased algal productivity and macroinvertebrate abundance and diversity, and as a result, fish in watersheds draining wildfire affected catchments were larger than those in the same age class from reference (unburned) watersheds. In the present investigation, stable isotope analysis of C and N was utilized to evaluate ecosystem energy dynamics and describe trophic relationships in those watersheds. Aquatic invertebrates from burned catchments showed enrichment in δ13C and δ15N relative to algae suggesting a reliance on algae (autochthony) as a primary source of energy. Invertebrates from unburned systems were depleted in δ13C relative to algae indicating reliance on allochthonous or terrestrial primary energy sources. Preliminary analysis of δ15N in macroinvertebrates showed slight enrichment in burned catchments suggesting a trophic shift. More comprehensive macroinvertebrate sampling and identification has been conducted; isotopic analysis will provide greater resolution of how specific families within feeding guilds have been affected by wildfire. This will provide more robust insights into how wildfires may impact stream ecology in mountain environments.

  19. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Ranch and Magic Fire Perimeters, Val Verde Quadrangle, Los Angeles and Ventura Counties, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  20. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Witch and Poomacha Fire Perimeters, Mesa Grande Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  1. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Santiago Fire Perimeter, Santiago Peak Quadrangle, Orange and Riverside Counties, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  2. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Santiago Fire Perimeter, Black Star Canyon Quadrangle, Orange, Riverside, and San Bernardino Counties, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  3. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Witch Fire Perimeter, Rancho Santa Fe Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  4. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Ranch Fire Perimeter, Cobblestone Mountain Quadrangle, Los Angeles and Ventura Counties, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  5. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Poomacha Fire Perimeter, Vail Lake Quadrangle, Riverside and San Diego Counties, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  6. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Witch Fire Perimeter, San Vicente Reservoir Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  7. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Poomacha Fire Perimeter, Pechanga Quadrangle, Riverside and San Diego Counties, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  8. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Ranch Fire Perimeter, Whitaker Peak Quadrangle, Los Angeles and Ventura Counties, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  9. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Witch Fire Perimeter, El Cajon Mountain Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  10. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Cajon Fire Perimeter, San Bernardino North Quadrangle, San Bernardino County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  11. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Grass Valley Fire Perimeter, Lake Arrowhead Quadrangle, San Bernardino County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  12. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Ammo Fire Perimeter, San Onofre Bluff Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  13. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Buckweed Fire Perimeter, Warm Springs Mountain Quadrangle, Los Angeles County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  14. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Poomacha Fire Perimeter, Temecula Quadrangle, Riverside and San Diego Counties, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  15. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Witch and Poomacha Fire Perimeters, Rodriguez Mountain Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  16. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Ammo Fire Perimeter, Las Pulgas Canyon Quadrangle, San Diego County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  17. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Magic and Buckweed Fire Perimeters, Newhall Quadrangle, Los Angeles County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  18. Preliminary Image Map of the 2007 Ammo Fire Perimeter, San Clemente Quadrangle, Orange and San Diego Counties, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Perry S.; Scratch, Wendy S.; Bias, Gaylord W.; Stander, Gregory B.; Sexton, Jenne L.; Krawczak, Bridgette J.

    2008-01-01

    In the fall of 2007, wildfires burned out of control in southern California. The extent of these fires encompassed large geographic areas that included a variety of landscapes from urban to wilderness. The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) is currently (2008) developing a quadrangle-based 1:24,000-scale image map product. One of the concepts behind the image map product is to provide an updated map in electronic format to assist with emergency response. This image map is one of 55 preliminary image map quadrangles covering the areas burned by the southern California wildfires. Each map is a layered, geo-registered Portable Document Format (.pdf) file. For more information about the layered geo-registered .pdf, see the readme file (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_Agua_Dulce_of2008-1029_README.txt). To view the areas affected and the quadrangles mapped in this preliminary project, see the map index (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2008/1029/downloads/CA_of2008_1029-1083_index.pdf) provided with this report.

  19. Short-term response of testate amoebae to wildfire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qin, Yangmin

    2016-04-01

    Many peatlands are exposed to intermittent burning but the implications of this burning for microbial communities have been little studied. Here we consider the impacts of burning on the dominant protists of peatland ecosystems, the testate amoebae. To do this we use a 'natural experiment'; a peatland exposed to wildfire where fire-fighting activity left a combination of unburned and heavily burned areas in close proximity. We assessed the change in testate amoebae three days after the end of the fire. We find that burning led to a large change in assemblage composition, primarily noted by a shift from taxa with tests constructed of idiosomes to those constructed of xenosomes. The most likely explanation for this change is the direct destruction of idiosome tests by extreme heat. Although we did not differentiate live individuals from empty tests it is probable that the fire has led to significant change in the amoeba community. This change may have interesting implications for the structure of the microbial foodweb, for silica cycling and for palaeoecological reconstruction in burned peatlands. This is clearly a topic which deserves more research attention.

  20. Improved Airborne System for Sensing Wildfires

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McKeown, Donald; Richardson, Michael

    2008-01-01

    The Wildfire Airborne Sensing Program (WASP) is engaged in a continuing effort to develop an improved airborne instrumentation system for sensing wildfires. The system could also be used for other aerial-imaging applications, including mapping and military surveillance. Unlike prior airborne fire-detection instrumentation systems, the WASP system would not be based on custom-made multispectral line scanners and associated custom- made complex optomechanical servomechanisms, sensors, readout circuitry, and packaging. Instead, the WASP system would be based on commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) equipment that would include (1) three or four electronic cameras (one for each of three or four wavelength bands) instead of a multispectral line scanner; (2) all associated drive and readout electronics; (3) a camera-pointing gimbal; (4) an inertial measurement unit (IMU) and a Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver for measuring the position, velocity, and orientation of the aircraft; and (5) a data-acquisition subsystem. It would be necessary to custom-develop an integrated sensor optical-bench assembly, a sensor-management subsystem, and software. The use of mostly COTS equipment is intended to reduce development time and cost, relative to those of prior systems.

  1. Sediment-phosphorus dynamics can shift aquatic ecology and cause downstream legacy effects after wildfire in large river systems.

    PubMed

    Emelko, Monica B; Stone, Micheal; Silins, Uldis; Allin, Don; Collins, Adrian L; Williams, Chris H S; Martens, Amanda M; Bladon, Kevin D

    2016-03-01

    Global increases in the occurrence of large, severe wildfires in forested watersheds threaten drinking water supplies and aquatic ecology. Wildfire effects on water quality, particularly nutrient levels and forms, can be significant. The longevity and downstream propagation of these effects as well as the geochemical mechanisms regulating them remain largely undocumented at larger river basin scales. Here, phosphorus (P) speciation and sorption behavior of suspended sediment were examined in two river basins impacted by a severe wildfire in southern Alberta, Canada. Fine-grained suspended sediments (<125 μm) were sampled continuously during ice-free conditions over a two-year period (2009-2010), 6 and 7 years after the wildfire. Suspended sediment samples were collected from upstream reference (unburned) river reaches, multiple tributaries within the burned areas, and from reaches downstream of the burned areas, in the Crowsnest and Castle River basins. Total particulate phosphorus (TPP) and particulate phosphorus forms (nonapatite inorganic P, apatite P, organic P), and the equilibrium phosphorus concentration (EPC0 ) of suspended sediment were assessed. Concentrations of TPP and the EPC0 were significantly higher downstream of wildfire-impacted areas compared to reference (unburned) upstream river reaches. Sediments from the burned tributary inputs contained higher levels of bioavailable particulate P (NAIP) - these effects were also observed downstream at larger river basin scales. The release of bioavailable P from postfire, P-enriched fine sediment is a key mechanism causing these effects in gravel-bed rivers at larger basin scales. Wildfire-associated increases in NAIP and the EPC0 persisted 6 and 7 years after wildfire. Accordingly, this work demonstrated that fine sediment in gravel-bed rivers is a significant, long-term source of in-stream bioavailable P that contributes to a legacy of wildfire impacts on downstream water quality, aquatic ecology, and

  2. When a Refuge is No More: Higher than Expected Wildfire Severity in Historical Forest Refugia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bleeker, T.; Kolden, C.; Camp, A. E.; Hessburg, P. F., Sr.; Poulos, H.

    2014-12-01

    Global climate change is an increasingly important driver of changes in the biogeograpraphy of vegetation. Such changes have primarily been characterized by gradual shifts in species distribution; however, major disturbances acting in concert with climate change may result in a sudden 'jump' in biogeographical distribution. This study examines the effects of wildfire on forest composition along an environmental gradient in the eastern Cascade Mountains of Central Washington, USA. A previous study by Camp et al. (1997) examined three drainages in this complex mountainous landscape to identify and characterize historic wildfire refugia based on topographic characteristics and forest age and species composition. These drainages subsequently burned in the 2012 Table Mountain and Peavine Canyon fires. In 2014 the Camp et al. plots were re-established and re-sampled to (1) assess burn severity using the Composite Burn Index (CBI) protocol and (2) assess fire effects upon the individual trees in each study plot. Remotely sensed imagery classified using the differenced Normalized Burn Ratio (dNBR) indicated these fires burned more intensely than historical fires in the region, providing a potential harbinger of future fire severity under climate change. Analysis of burn severity revealed that the fire burned across the entire environmental gradient of the drainages, with no significant difference in burn occurrence or burn severity between refugial and non-refugial plots as designated by Camp et al.; this suggests that historical wildfire refugia may no longer prove sustainable in an era of climate change. Additionally, trees characteristic of warmer and drier climates experienced lower fire mortality than trees typical of cooler and moister climates. If future reseeding and recruitment in the forest favors more xeric tree species, the 2012 fires may prove to be the disturbance event that precipitates a 'jump' in the biogeographic distribution of trees in these drainages.

  3. Wildfires in bamboo-dominated Amazonian forest: impacts on above-ground biomass and biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Barlow, Jos; Silveira, Juliana M; Mestre, Luiz A M; Andrade, Rafael B; Camacho D'Andrea, Gabriela; Louzada, Julio; Vaz-de-Mello, Fernando Z; Numata, Izaya; Lacau, Sébastien; Cochrane, Mark A

    2012-01-01

    Fire has become an increasingly important disturbance event in south-western Amazonia. We conducted the first assessment of the ecological impacts of these wildfires in 2008, sampling forest structure and biodiversity along twelve 500 m transects in the Chico Mendes Extractive Reserve, Acre, Brazil. Six transects were placed in unburned forests and six were in forests that burned during a series of forest fires that occurred from August to October 2005. Normalized Burn Ratio (NBR) calculations, based on Landsat reflectance data, indicate that all transects were similar prior to the fires. We sampled understorey and canopy vegetation, birds using both mist nets and point counts, coprophagous dung beetles and the leaf-litter ant fauna. Fire had limited influence upon either faunal or floral species richness or community structure responses, and stems <10 cm DBH were the only group to show highly significant (p = 0.001) community turnover in burned forests. Mean aboveground live biomass was statistically indistinguishable in the unburned and burned plots, although there was a significant increase in the total abundance of dead stems in burned plots. Comparisons with previous studies suggest that wildfires had much less effect upon forest structure and biodiversity in these south-western Amazonian forests than in central and eastern Amazonia, where most fire research has been undertaken to date. We discuss potential reasons for the apparent greater resilience of our study plots to wildfire, examining the role of fire intensity, bamboo dominance, background rates of disturbance, landscape and soil conditions.

  4. Wildfires in Bamboo-Dominated Amazonian Forest: Impacts on Above-Ground Biomass and Biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Barlow, Jos; Silveira, Juliana M.; Mestre, Luiz A. M.; Andrade, Rafael B.; Camacho D'Andrea, Gabriela; Louzada, Julio; Vaz-de-Mello, Fernando Z.; Numata, Izaya; Lacau, Sébastien; Cochrane, Mark A.

    2012-01-01

    Fire has become an increasingly important disturbance event in south-western Amazonia. We conducted the first assessment of the ecological impacts of these wildfires in 2008, sampling forest structure and biodiversity along twelve 500 m transects in the Chico Mendes Extractive Reserve, Acre, Brazil. Six transects were placed in unburned forests and six were in forests that burned during a series of forest fires that occurred from August to October 2005. Normalized Burn Ratio (NBR) calculations, based on Landsat reflectance data, indicate that all transects were similar prior to the fires. We sampled understorey and canopy vegetation, birds using both mist nets and point counts, coprophagous dung beetles and the leaf-litter ant fauna. Fire had limited influence upon either faunal or floral species richness or community structure responses, and stems <10 cm DBH were the only group to show highly significant (p = 0.001) community turnover in burned forests. Mean aboveground live biomass was statistically indistinguishable in the unburned and burned plots, although there was a significant increase in the total abundance of dead stems in burned plots. Comparisons with previous studies suggest that wildfires had much less effect upon forest structure and biodiversity in these south-western Amazonian forests than in central and eastern Amazonia, where most fire research has been undertaken to date. We discuss potential reasons for the apparent greater resilience of our study plots to wildfire, examining the role of fire intensity, bamboo dominance, background rates of disturbance, landscape and soil conditions. PMID:22428035

  5. How wild is your model fire? Constraining WRF-Chem wildfire smoke simulations with satellite observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fischer, E. V.; Ford, B.; Lassman, W.; Pierce, J. R.; Pfister, G.; Volckens, J.; Magzamen, S.; Gan, R.

    2015-12-01

    Exposure to high concentrations of particulate matter (PM) present during acute pollution events is associated with adverse health effects. While many anthropogenic pollution sources are regulated in the United States, emissions from wildfires are difficult to characterize and control. With wildfire frequency and intensity in the western U.S. projected to increase, it is important to more precisely determine the effect that wildfire emissions have on human health, and whether improved forecasts of these air pollution events can mitigate the health risks associated with wildfires. One of the challenges associated with determining health risks associated with wildfire emissions is that the low spatial resolution of surface monitors means that surface measurements may not be representative of a population's exposure, due to steep concentration gradients. To obtain better estimates of ambient exposure levels for health studies, a chemical transport model (CTM) can be used to simulate the evolution of a wildfire plume as it travels over populated regions downwind. Improving the performance of a CTM would allow the development of a new forecasting framework that could better help decision makers estimate and potentially mitigate future health impacts. We use the Weather Research and Forecasting model with online chemistry (WRF-Chem) to simulate wildfire plume evolution. By varying the model resolution, meteorology reanalysis initial conditions, and biomass burning inventories, we are able to explore the sensitivity of model simulations to these various parameters. Satellite observations are used first to evaluate model skill, and then to constrain the model results. These data are then used to estimate population-level exposure, with the aim of better characterizing the effects that wildfire emissions have on human health.

  6. Assessing reverse 911®: a case study of the 2007 San Diego wildfires.

    PubMed

    Neaves, Tonya T; Mann, Stacey C; Myers, Laura B; Cosby, Arthur G

    2014-01-01

    In October 2007, 250,000 residents of San Diego County were forced to evacuate as wildfires burned 62 miles(2) in 24 hours. In 2005, the Sheriff's Department invested in Reverse 911® to contact residents upon emergencies. The system was used during this wildfire, and by the following midday, had made 394,915 calls. Shortly thereafter, 1,210 residents were surveyed to investigate the effectiveness of this technology. Findings reveal that 42 percent of respondents received their first warning from a Reverse 911® call while an additional 7 percent received the same call, but not as their first warning, as compared to all other methods used.

  7. Air quality impacts of European wildfire emissions in a changing climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knorr, Wolfgang; Dentener, Frank; Hantson, Stijn; Jiang, Leiwen; Klimont, Zbigniew; Arneth, Almut

    2016-05-01

    Wildfires are not only a threat to human property and a vital element of many ecosystems, but also an important source of air pollution. In this study, we first review the available evidence for a past or possible future climate-driven increase in wildfire emissions in Europe. We then introduce an ensemble of model simulations with a coupled wildfire-dynamic-ecosystem model, which we combine with published spatial maps of both wildfire and anthropogenic emissions of several major air pollutants to arrive at air pollutant emission projections for several time slices during the 21st century. The results indicate moderate wildfire-driven emission increases until 2050, but there is a possibility of large increases until the last decades of this century at high levels of climate change. We identify southern and north-eastern Europe as potential areas where wildfires may surpass anthropogenic pollution sources during the summer months. Under a scenario of high levels of climate change (Representative Concentration Pathway, RCP, 8.5), emissions from wildfires in central and northern Portugal and possibly southern Italy and along the west coast of the Balkan peninsula are projected to reach levels that could affect annual mean particulate matter concentrations enough to be relevant for meeting WHO air quality targets.

  8. Pastoral wildfires in the Mediterranean: understanding their linkages to land cover patterns in managed landscapes.

    PubMed

    Ruiz-Mirazo, Jabier; Martínez-Fernández, Jesús; Vega-García, Cristina

    2012-05-15

    The pastoral use of fire to regenerate rangelands is a major cause of wildfires in many Mediterranean countries. Despite producing important environmental impacts, this phenomenon has hardly ever been studied separately from other wildfire ignition causes. As extensive livestock breeding relies on the available pasture resources, we hypothesised that a higher rate of pastoral wildfire ignitions could be associated with land cover patterns, as these reflect the spatial arrangement of human activities in managed landscapes. To investigate these patterns, we studied landscape structure and the pastoral wildfires recorded between 1988 and 2000 in 24 Nature Park landscapes in Andalusia (Spain). The CORINE Land Cover map was reclassified according to five levels of grazing use and landscape metrics were calculated. Neural networks were developed to model the relationship between landscape metrics and pastoral wildfires, obtaining a set of significant variables which are discussed in the frame of land and livestock management in the region. We conclude that pastoral wildfire ignitions are more likely in landscapes where the pattern of being dominated by a matrix composed of several large patches of low to moderate grazing use, and having abundant small and elongated patches of higher grazing use, is more extreme. This pattern could be reflecting the persistence of numerous small livestock farms within an increasingly abandoned agrarian landscape. To prevent pastoral wildfires, land management could attempt to enlarge and merge those small patches of higher grazing use, reducing the amount of interface and their intermixture with the surrounding poorer pasture resources.

  9. The use of composite fingerprints to quantify sediment sources in a wildfire impacted landscape, Alberta, Canada.

    PubMed

    Stone, M; Collins, A L; Silins, U; Emelko, M B; Zhang, Y S

    2014-03-01

    There is increasing global concern regarding the impacts of large scale land disturbance by wildfire on a wide range of water and related ecological services. This study explores the impact of the 2003 Lost Creek wildfire in the Crowsnest River basin, Alberta, Canada on regional scale sediment sources using a tracing approach. A composite geochemical fingerprinting procedure was used to apportion the sediment efflux among three key spatial sediment sources: 1) unburned (reference) 2) burned and 3) burned sub-basins that were subsequently salvage logged. Spatial sediment sources were characterized by collecting time-integrated suspended sediment samples using passive devices during the entire ice free periods in 2009 and 2010. The tracing procedure combines the Kruskal-Wallis H-test, principal component analysis and genetic-algorithm driven discriminant function analysis for source discrimination. Source apportionment was based on a numerical mass balance model deployed within a Monte Carlo framework incorporating both local optimization and global (genetic algorithm) optimization. The mean relative frequency-weighted average median inputs from the three spatial source units were estimated to be 17% (inter-quartile uncertainty range 0-32%) from the reference areas, 45% (inter-quartile uncertainty range 25-65%) from the burned areas and 38% (inter-quartile uncertainty range 14-59%) from the burned-salvage logged areas. High sediment inputs from burned and the burned-salvage logged areas, representing spatial source units 2 and 3, reflect the lasting effects of forest canopy and forest floor organic matter disturbance during the 2003 wildfire including increased runoff and sediment availability related to high terrestrial erosion, streamside mass wasting and river bank collapse. The results demonstrate the impact of wildfire and incremental pressures associated with salvage logging on catchment spatial sediment sources in higher elevation Montane regions where forest

  10. Soil-water dynamics and unsaturated storage during snowmelt following wildfire

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ebel, Brian A.; Hinckley, E.S.; Martin, Deborah

    2012-01-01

    Many forested watersheds with a substantial fraction of precipitation delivered as snow have the potential for landscape disturbance by wildfire. Little is known about the immediate effects of wildfire on snowmelt and near-surface hydrologic responses, including soil-water storage. Montane systems at the rain-snow transition have soil-water dynamics that are further complicated during the snowmelt period by strong aspect controls on snowmelt and soil thawing. Here we present data from field measurements of snow hydrology and subsurface hydrologic and temperature responses during the first winter and spring after the September 2010 Fourmile Canyon Fire in Colorado, USA. Our observations of soil-water content and soil temperature show sharp contrasts in hydrologic and thermal conditions between north- and south-facing slopes. South-facing burned soils were ∼1–2 °C warmer on average than north-facing burned soils and ∼1.5 °C warmer than south-facing unburned soils, which affected soil thawing during the snowmelt period. Soil-water dynamics also differed by aspect: in response to soil thawing, soil-water content increased approximately one month earlier on south-facing burned slopes than on north-facing burned slopes. While aspect and wildfire affect soil-water dynamics during snowmelt, soil-water storage at the end of the snowmelt period reached the value at field capacity for each plot, suggesting that post-snowmelt unsaturated storage was not substantially influenced by aspect in wildfire-affected areas. Our data and analysis indicate that the amount of snowmelt-driven groundwater recharge may be larger in wildfire-impacted areas, especially on south-facing slopes, because of earlier soil thaw and longer durations of soil-water contents above field capacity in those areas.

  11. Health Effects of the 2003 Southern California Wildfires on Children

    PubMed Central

    Künzli, Nino; Avol, Ed; Wu, Jun; Gauderman, W. James; Rappaport, Ed; Millstein, Joshua; Bennion, Jonathan; McConnell, Rob; Gilliland, Frank D.; Berhane, Kiros; Lurmann, Fred; Winer, Arthur; Peters, John M.

    2006-01-01

    Rationale: In late October 2003, Southern California wildfires burned more than 3,000 km2. The wildfires produced heavy smoke that affected several communities participating in the University of Southern California Children's Health Study (CHS). Objectives: To study the acute effects of fire smoke on the health of CHS participants. Methods: A questionnaire was used to assess smoke exposure and occurrence of symptoms among CHS high-school students (n = 873; age, 17–18 yr) and elementary-school children (n = 5,551; age, 6–7 yr), in a total of 16 communities. Estimates of particulate matter (PM10) concentrations during the 5 d with the highest fire activity were used to characterize community smoke level. Main Results: All symptoms (nose, eyes, and throat irritations; cough; bronchitis; cold; wheezing; asthma attacks), medication usage, and physician visits were associated with individually reported exposure differences within communities. Risks increased monotonically with the number of reported smoky days. For most outcomes, reporting rates between communities were also associated with the fire-related PM10 levels. Associations tended to be strongest among those without asthma. Individuals with asthma were more likely to take preventive action, such as wearing masks or staying indoors during the fire. Conclusions: Exposure to wildfire smoke was associated with increased eye and respiratory symptoms, medication use, and physician visits. PMID:16946126

  12. A transport model for prediction of wildfire behavior

    SciTech Connect

    Linn, R.R.

    1997-07-01

    Wildfires are a threat to human life and property, yet they are an unavoidable part of nature. In the past people have tried to predict wildfire behavior through the use of point functional models but have been unsuccessful at adequately predicting the gross behavior of the broad spectrum of fires that occur in nature. The majority of previous models do not have self-determining propagation rates. The author uses a transport approach to represent this complicated problem and produce a model that utilizes a self-determining propagation rate. The transport approach allows one to represent a large number of environments including transition regions such as those with nonhomogeneous vegetation and terrain. Some of the most difficult features to treat are the imperfectly known boundary conditions and the fine scale structure that is unresolvable, such as the specific location of the fuel or the precise incoming winds. The author accounts for the microscopic details of a fire with macroscopic resolution by dividing quantities into mean and fluctuating parts similar to what is done in traditional turbulence modelling. The author develops a complicated model that includes the transport of multiple gas species, such as oxygen and volatile hydrocarbons, and tracks the depletion of various fuels and other stationary solids and liquids. From this model the author also forms a simplified local burning model with which he performs a number of simulations for the purpose of demonstrating the properties of a self-determining transport-based wildfire model.

  13. Biomass Burning

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2015-07-27

    Projects:  Biomass Burning Definition/Description:  Biomass Burning: This data set represents the geographical and temporal distribution of total amount of biomass burned. These data may be used in general circulation models (GCMs) and ...

  14. Burn Institute

    MedlinePlus

    ... Programs - Fire and Burn Prevention - - Fire Safe Kids - - Senior Smoke Alarm Program - - National Scald Campaign - - Community Services - Burn Survivor Support - - Camp Beyond the Scars - - Retreats - - Burn Survivor & Caregiver Support Groups - - Scholarship Program - - Emergency Needs & Special Assistance Fund - - Red ...

  15. Wildfire on Karst: an Overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coleborn, K.; Lupingna, A.; Flemons, I.; Nagra, G.; Treble, P. C.; Andersen, M. S.; Baker, A.; Tozer, M.; Fairchild, I. J.; Baker, A.; Meehan, S.

    2015-12-01

    Wildfires dramatically change the surface environment by removing vegetation and soil microbial communities and altering soil structure and geochemistry. Karst subsurface processes such as dissolution, cave formation and speleothem deposition are sensitive to environmental change, which is precisely why speleothems have been widely used as recorders of surface and climate change at an annual to millennial temporal scale. The effect of fire on karst processes is poorly understood. We hypothesise that a wildfire induced change at the surface will impact karst dissolution and precipitation processes. Firstly, sterilisation of the soil by heating causes a reduction in soil CO2 concentration which is a key component in dissolution processes. Secondly, removal of vegetation alters surface albedo and soil water storage properties. This could change the hydrology and isotopic signature of speleothem-forming drip water. We also hypothesise that a wildfire will produce a unique biogeochemical signature due to a change in the organic and inorganic properties of soil, which can be transported into speleothem forming drip water. Fire changes the organic matter character which is an important component in the mobilisation and transport of trace metals. Combustion of vegetation results in addition of ash derived minerals to the soil. Quantifying the biogeochemical signature from a burnt landscape will enable us to determine whether this wildfire signature is preserved in speleothems. This would provide the opportunity to use speleothems as recorders of fire history for the first time. Determining the impact of fire on karst processes would inform fire management and karst conservation policies.

  16. Emergency Assessment of Debris-Flow Hazards from Basins Burned by the 2007 Slide and Grass Valley Fires, San Bernardino County, Southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cannon, Susan H.; Gartner, Joseph E.; Michael, John A.; Bauer, Mark A.; Stitt, Susan C.; Knifong, Donna L.; McNamara, Bernard J.; Roque, Yvonne M.

    2007-01-01

    INTRODUCTION The objective of this report is to present a preliminary emergency assessment of the potential for debris-flow generation from basins burned by the Slide and Grass Valley Fires in San Bernardino County, southern California in 2007. Debris flows are among the most hazardous geologic phenomena; debris flows that followed wildfires in southern California in 2003 killed 16 people and caused tens of millions of dollars of property damage. A short period of even moderate rainfall on a burned watershed can lead to debris flows. Rainfall that is normally absorbed into hillslope soils can run off almost instantly after vegetation has been removed by wildfire. This causes much greater and more rapid runoff than is normal from creeks and drainage areas. Highly erodible soils in a burn scar allow flood waters to entrain large amounts of ash, mud, boulders, and unburned vegetation. Within the burned area and downstream, the force of rushing water, soil, and rock can destroy culverts, bridges, roadways, and buildings, potentially causing injury or death. This emergency debris-flow hazard assessment is presented as relative ranking of the predicted median volume of debris flows that can issue from basin outlets in response to 3.50 inches (88.90 mm) of rainfall over a 3-hour period. Such a storm has a 10-year return period. The calculation of debris flow volume is based on a multiple-regression statistical model that describes the median volume of material that can be expected from a recently burned basin as a function of the area burned at high and moderate severity, the basin area with slopes greater than or equal to 30 percent, and triggering storm rainfall. Cannon and others (2007) describe the methods used to generate the hazard maps. Identification of potential debris-flow hazards from burned drainage basins is necessary to issue warnings for specific basins, to make effective mitigation decisions, and to help plan evacuation timing and routes.

  17. Emergency Assessment of Debris-Flow Hazards from Basins Burned by the 2007 Ranch Fire, Ventura and Los Angeles Counties, Southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cannon, Susan H.; Gartner, Joseph E.; Michael, John A.; Bauer, Mark A.; Stitt, Susan C.; Knifong, Donna L.; McNamara, Bernard J.; Roque, Yvonne M.

    2007-01-01

    INTRODUCTION The objective of this report is to present a preliminary emergency assessment of the potential for debris-flow generation from basins burned by the Ranch Fire in Ventura and Los Angeles Counties, southern California in 2007. Debris flows are among the most hazardous geologic phenomena; debris flows that followed wildfires in southern California in 2003 killed 16 people and caused tens of millions of dollars of property damage. A short period of even moderate rainfall on a burned watershed can lead to debris flows. Rainfall that is normally absorbed into hillslope soils can run off almost instantly after vegetation has been removed by wildfire. This causes much greater and more rapid runoff than is normal from creeks and drainage areas. Highly erodible soils in a burn scar allow flood waters to entrain large amounts of ash, mud, boulders, and unburned vegetation. Within the burned area and downstream, the force of rushing water, soil, and rock can destroy culverts, bridges, roadways, and buildings, potentially causing injury or death. This emergency debris-flow hazard assessment is presented as relative ranking of the predicted median volume of debris flows that can issue from basin outlets in response to 2.25 inches (57.15 mm) of rainfall over a 3-hour period. Such a storm has a 10-year return period. The calculation of debris flow volume is based on a multiple-regression statistical model that describes the median volume of material that can be expected from a recently burned basin as a function of the area burned at high and moderate severity, the basin area with slopes greater than or equal to 30 percent, and triggering storm rainfall. Cannon and others (2007) describe the methods used to generate the hazard maps. Identification of potential debris-flow hazards from burned drainage basins is necessary to issue warnings for specific basins, to make effective mitigation decisions, and to help plan evacuation timing and routes.

  18. Wildfire and MAMS data from STORMFEST

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jedlovec, Gary J.; Carlson, G. S.

    1993-01-01

    Early in 1992, NASA participated in an inter-agency field program called STORMFEST. The STORM-Fronts Experiment Systems Test (STORMFEST) was designed to test various systems critical to the success of STORM 1 in a very focused experiment. The field effort focused on winter storms in order to investigate the structure and evolution of fronts and associated mesoscale phenomena in the central United States. This document describes the data collected from two instruments onboard a NASA ER2 aircraft which was deployed out of Ellington Field in Houston, Texas from February 13 through March 15, 1992, in support of this experiment. The two instruments were the Wildfire (a.k.a. the moderate resolution imaging spectrometer-nadir (MODIS-N) Airborne Simulation (MAS)) and the Multispectral Atmospheric Mapping Sensor (MAMS).

  19. Projection of wildfire activity in southern California in the mid-21st century

    PubMed Central

    Mickley, Loretta J.; Logan, Jennifer A.

    2014-01-01

    We estimate area burned in southern California at mid-century (2046-2065) for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) A1B scenario. We develop both regressions and a parameterization to predict area burned in three ecoregions, and apply present-day (1981-2000) and future meteorology from the suite of general circulation models (GCMs) to these fire prediction tools. The regressions account for the impacts of both current and antecedent meteorological factors on wildfire activity and explain 40-46% of the variance in area burned during 1980-2009. The parameterization yields area burned as a function of temperature, precipitation, and relative humidity, and includes the impact of Santa Ana wind and other geographical factors on wildfires. It explains 38% of the variance in area burned over southern California as a whole, and 64% of the variance in southwestern California. The parameterization also captures the seasonality of wildfires in three ecoregions of southern California. Using the regressions, we find that area burned likely doubles in Southwestern California by midcentury, and increases by 35% in the Sierra Nevada and 10% in central western California. The parameterization suggests a likely increase of 40% in area burned in southwestern California and 50% in the Sierra Nevada by midcentury. It also predicts a longer fire season in southwestern California due to warmer and drier conditions on Santa Ana days in November. Our method provides robust estimates of area burned at midcentury, a key metric which can be used to calculate the fire-related effects on air quality, human health, and the associated costs. PMID:25346575

  20. Projection of wildfire activity in southern California in the mid-twenty-first century

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yue, Xu; Mickley, Loretta J.; Logan, Jennifer A.

    2014-10-01

    We estimate area burned in southern California at mid-century (2046-2065) for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change A1B scenario. We develop both regressions and a parameterization to predict area burned in three ecoregions, and apply present-day (1981-2000) and future meteorology from the suite of general circulation models to these fire prediction tools. The regressions account for the impacts of both current and antecedent meteorological factors on wildfire activity and explain 40-46 % of the variance in area burned during 1980-2009. The parameterization yields area burned as a function of temperature, precipitation, and relative humidity, and includes the impact of Santa Ana wind and other geographical factors on wildfires. It explains 38 % of the variance in area burned over southern California as a whole, and 64 % of the variance in southwestern California. The parameterization also captures the seasonality of wildfires in three ecoregions of southern California. Using the regressions, we find that area burned likely doubles in Southwestern California by midcentury, and increases by 35 % in the Sierra Nevada and 10 % in central western California. The parameterization suggests a likely increase of 40 % in area burned in southwestern California and 50 % in the Sierra Nevada by midcentury. It also predicts a longer fire season in southwestern California due to warmer and drier conditions on Santa Ana days in November. Our method provides robust estimates of area burned at midcentury, a key metric which can be used to calculate the fire-related effects on air quality, human health, and the associated costs.

  1. Bushfire disaster burn casualty management: the Australian "Black Saturday" bushfire experience.

    PubMed

    Seifman, Marc; Ek, Edmund W; Menezes, Hana; Rozen, Warren M; Whitaker, Iain S; Cleland, Heather J

    2011-11-01

    Mass burn disasters are among the most difficult disasters to manage, with major burns requiring complex management in a multidisciplinary setting and specialist burns services having limited capacity to deal with large numbers of complex patients. There is a paucity of literature addressing health system responses to mass burn disasters resulting from wildfires, with the events of the "Black Saturday" disaster in the state of Victoria, Australia, able to provide a unique opportunity to draw lessons and increase awareness of key management issues arising in mass burn casualty disasters. The event comprised the worst natural disaster in the state's history and one of the worst wildfire disasters in world history, claiming 173 lives and costing more than AUD 4 billion. This article draws on the national burns disaster plan instituted, Australian Mass Casualty Burn Disaster Plan (AUSBURNPLAN), and details the management of mass burn cases through a systems-based perspective.

  2. Fire Emissions Estimates in Siberia: Evaluation of Uncertainties in Area Burned, Land Cover, and Fuel Consumption

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kukavskaya, E.; Soja, A. J.; Ivanova, G. A.; Petkov, A.; Ponomarev, E. I.; Conard, S. G.

    2012-12-01

    Wildfire is one of the main disturbance factors in the boreal zone of Russia. Fires in the Russian boreal forest range from low-severity surface fires to high-severity crown fires. Estimates of carbon emissions from fires in Russia vary substantially due to differences in ecosystem classification and mapping, burned area calculations, and estimates of fuel consumption. We examined uncertainties in different parameters used to estimate biomass burning emissions. Several fire datasets (Institute of Forest burned area product, MCD45, MCD64, MOD14/MYD14, official data) were compared to estimate uncertainties in area burned in Siberia. Area burned was found to differ significantly by data source, with satellite data being by an order of magnitude greater than ground-based data. Differences between mapped ecosystems were also compared and contrasted on the basis of five land cover maps (GLC-2000, Globcover-2009, MODIS Collection 4 and 5 Global Land Cover, and the Digitized Ecosystem map of the Former Soviet Union) to evaluate the potential for error resulting from disparate vegetation structure and fuel consumption estimates. The examination of land cover maps showed that estimates of relative proportion of fire by ecosystem type varied substantially for the same year from map to map. Fuel consumption remains one of the main uncertainties in estimates of biomass burning emissions in Siberia. Accurate fuel consumption estimates are obtained in the course of fire experiments with pre- and post-fire biomass measuring. Our large-scale experiments carried out in the course of the FIRE BEAR (Fire Effects in the Boreal Eurasia Region) Project provided quantitative and qualitative data on ecosystem state and carbon emissions due to fires of known behavior in major forest types of Siberia that could be used to verify large-scale carbon emissions estimates. Global climate change is expected to result in increase of fire hazard and area burned, leading to impacts on global air

  3. Medieval warming initiated exceptionally large wildfire outbreaks in the Rocky Mountains.

    PubMed

    Calder, W John; Parker, Dusty; Stopka, Cody J; Jiménez-Moreno, Gonzalo; Shuman, Bryan N

    2015-10-27

    Many of the largest wildfires in US history burned in recent decades, and climate change explains much of the increase in area burned. The frequency of extreme wildfire weather will increase with continued warming, but many uncertainties still exist about future fire regimes, including how the risk of large fires will persist as vegetation changes. Past fire-climate relationships provide an opportunity to constrain the related uncertainties, and reveal widespread burning across large regions of western North America during past warm intervals. Whether such episodes also burned large portions of individual landscapes has been difficult to determine, however, because uncertainties with the ages of past fires and limited spatial resolution often prohibit specific estimates of past area burned. Accounting for these challenges in a subalpine landscape in Colorado, we estimated century-scale fire synchroneity across 12 lake-sediment charcoal records spanning the past 2,000 y. The percentage of sites burned only deviated from the historic range of variability during the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA) between 1,200 and 850 y B.P., when temperatures were similar to recent decades. Between 1,130 and 1,030 y B.P., 83% (median estimate) of our sites burned when temperatures increased ∼0.5 °C relative to the preceding centuries. Lake-based fire rotation during the MCA decreased to an estimated 120 y, representing a 260% higher rate of burning than during the period of dendroecological sampling (360 to -60 y B.P.). Increased burning, however, did not persist throughout the MCA. Burning declined abruptly before temperatures cooled, indicating possible fuel limitations to continued burning.

  4. Medieval warming initiated exceptionally large wildfire outbreaks in the Rocky Mountains

    PubMed Central

    Calder, W. John; Parker, Dusty; Stopka, Cody J.; Jiménez-Moreno, Gonzalo; Shuman, Bryan N.

    2015-01-01

    Many of the largest wildfires in US history burned in recent decades, and climate change explains much of the increase in area burned. The frequency of extreme wildfire weather will increase with continued warming, but many uncertainties still exist about future fire regimes, including how the risk of large fires will persist as vegetation changes. Past fire-climate relationships provide an opportunity to constrain the related uncertainties, and reveal widespread burning across large regions of western North America during past warm intervals. Whether such episodes also burned large portions of individual landscapes has been difficult to determine, however, because uncertainties with the ages of past fires and limited spatial resolution often prohibit specific estimates of past area burned. Accounting for these challenges in a subalpine landscape in Colorado, we estimated century-scale fire synchroneity across 12 lake-sediment charcoal records spanning the past 2,000 y. The percentage of sites burned only deviated from the historic range of variability during the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA) between 1,200 and 850 y B.P., when temperatures were similar to recent decades. Between 1,130 and 1,030 y B.P., 83% (median estimate) of our sites burned when temperatures increased ∼0.5 °C relative to the preceding centuries. Lake-based fire rotation during the MCA decreased to an estimated 120 y, representing a 260% higher rate of burning than during the period of dendroecological sampling (360 to −60 y B.P.). Increased burning, however, did not persist throughout the MCA. Burning declined abruptly before temperatures cooled, indicating possible fuel limitations to continued burning. PMID:26438834

  5. Effect of wildfires on physicochemical changes of watershed dissolved organic matter.

    PubMed

    Revchuk, Alex D; Suffet, I H

    2014-04-01

    Physicochemical characterization of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) provides essential data to describe watershed characteristics after drastic changes caused by wildfires. Post-fire watershed behavior is important for water source selection, management, and drinking water treatment optimization. Using ash and other burned vegetation fragments, a leaching procedure was implemented to describe physicochemical changes to watershed DOC caused by wildfires. Samples were collected after the 2007 and 2009 wildfires near Santa Barbara, California. Substantial differences in size distribution (measured by ultrafiltration), polarity (measured by polarity rapid assessment method), and the origin of leached DOC (measured by fluorescence) were observed between burned and unburned sites. Recently burned ash had 10 times the DOC leaching potential, and was dominated by large size fragments, compared to weathered 2-year-old ash. Charged DOC fractions were found to positively correlate with DOC size, whereas hydrophobic and hydrophilic DOC fractions were not. Proteins were only observed in recently burned ash and were indicative of recent post-fire biological activity.

  6. Effects of large-scale wildfire on ground foraging ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Matsuda, Tritia; Turschak, Greta; Brehme, Cheryl; Rochester, Carlton; Mitrovich, Milan; Fisher, Robert

    2011-01-01

    We investigated the effect of broad-scale wildfire on ground foraging ants within southern California. In October and November of 2003, two wildfires burned large portions of the wildlands within San Diego County. Between January 2005 and September 2006, we surveyed 63 plots across four sites to measure the effect of the fires on the ant assemblages present in four vegetation types: 1) coastal sage scrub, 2) chaparral, 3) grassland, and 4) woodland riparian. Thirty-six of the 63 plots were sampled before the fires between March 2001 and June 2003. Mixed model regression analyses, accounting for the burn history of each plot and our pre- and postfire sampling efforts, revealed that fire had a negative effect on ant species diversity. Multivariate analyses showed that ant community structure varied significantly among the four vegetation types, and only the ant assemblage associated with coastal sage scrub exhibited a significant difference between burned and unburned samples. The most notable change detected at the individual species level involved Messor andrei (Mayr), which increased from <1% of prefire coastal sage scrub ant samples to 32.1% in burned plots postfire. We theorize that M. andrei responded to the increase of bare ground and postfire seed production, leading to an increase in the detection rate for this species. Collectively, our results suggest that wildfires can have short-term impacts on the diversity and community structure of ground foraging ants in coastal sage scrub. We discuss these findings in relation to management implications and directions for future research.

  7. Estimation of wildfire size and risk changes due to fuels treatments

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cochrane, M.A.; Moran, C.J.; Wimberly, M.C.; Baer, A.D.; Finney, M.A.; Beckendorf, K.L.; Eidenshink, J.; Zhu, Z.

    2012-01-01

    Human land use practices, altered climates, and shifting forest and fire management policies have increased the frequency of large wildfires several-fold. Mitigation of potential fire behaviour and fire severity have increasingly been attempted through pre-fire alteration of wildland fuels using mechanical treatments and prescribed fires. Despite annual treatment of more than a million hectares of land, quantitative assessments of the effectiveness of existing fuel treatments at reducing the size of actual wildfires or how they might alter the risk of burning across landscapes are currently lacking. Here, we present a method for estimating spatial probabilities of burning as a function of extant fuels treatments for any wildland fire-affected landscape. We examined the landscape effects of more than 72 000 ha of wildland fuel treatments involved in 14 large wildfires that burned 314 000 ha of forests in nine US states between 2002 and 2010. Fuels treatments altered the probability of fire occurrence both positively and negatively across landscapes, effectively redistributing fire risk by changing surface fire spread rates and reducing the likelihood of crowning behaviour. Trade offs are created between formation of large areas with low probabilities of increased burning and smaller, well-defined regions with reduced fire risk.

  8. Hygroscopicity of Black-Carbon-Containing Aerosol in Wildfire Plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perring, A. E.; Schwarz, J. P.; Markovic, M. Z.; Fahey, D. W.; Yokelson, R. J.; Jimenez, J. L.; Campuzano Jost, P.; Day, D. A.; Palm, B. B.; Wisthaler, A.; Ziemba, L. D.; Anderson, B. E.; Diskin, G. S.; Huey, L. G.; Gao, R. S.

    2015-12-01

    Water uptake by black carbon (BC) containing aerosol has been quantified in wildfire plumes of varying age (from 1 to ~40 hr old) sampled in North America during the NASA SEAC4RS mission of 2013. Measurements were made in flight using parallel single-particle soot photometers (SP2) that simultaneously detected the BC component of the ambient aerosol ensemble under contrasting humidity conditions. The hygroscopicity parameter, κ, of material internally mixed with BC derived from this data set is consistent with previous estimates of bulk aerosol hygroscopicity from biomass burning sources. We explore the temporal evolution of κ during aging of the Yosemite Rim Fire plume to constrain the rate of conversion of BC-containing aerosol from hydrophobic to hydrophilic modes in these emissions. We also investigate the relationship between κ values for BC-containing particles and the oxidation state and hygroscopicity of the bulk aerosol. These observations have implications for BC transport and removal in biomass burning plumes and provide important constraints on model treatment of BC optical and microphysical properties from wildfire sources in ambient conditions.

  9. Use of Polar Orbiting Earth Observatories to Create a Synoptic Inventory of North American Forested Areas Affected by Wildfire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sohlberg, R.; Carroll, M.; Townshend, J.; McCarty, J.

    2005-12-01

    The authors will discuss a newly developed algorithm which utilizes the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument onboard the Terra and Aqua satellites to derive an ongoing inventory of forested areas affected by wildfire. The experimental data set has been developed at a spatial resolution of 250 m and a temporal resolution of 16 days. The intent is to provide a near real-time inventory of fire-affected forested landscapes. The method allows for discrimination between those areas which were recently burned and those which were burned previously in the same or earlier fire seasons. This is an automated and repeatable method for delineating fire-affected forest at a country scale. By relying entirely on satellite observations, the product is intended to be internally consistent, avoiding potential bias and omission introduced by ground and airborne-based mapping. The data set is intended for use at a national and regional scale to update forest inventories in a rapid fashion, and to direct land management efforts. This moderate resolution product can then be used to direct detailed inventory and characterization efforts utilizing fine resolution instruments and in situ observation. Additional features of the data set provide the ability to gain a basic understanding of the spatial distribution of burn severity. Based upon user requirements, such as the need to monitor specific events of national importance, the methods presented can be adapted to provide results on a daily basis. We will present validation results using perimeter and progression maps produced for large fires in the western United States and Alaska. Special attention will be given to future operational opportunities as we move to the next generation instrument, VIIRS, which will first launch aboard the NPP platform and later on a planned series of NPOESS satellites.

  10. Impact of 2050 climate change on North American wildfire: consequences for ozone air quality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yue, X.; Mickley, L. J.; Logan, J. A.; Hudman, R. C.; Martin, M. V.; Yantosca, R. M.

    2015-09-01

    We estimate future area burned in the Alaskan and Canadian forest by the mid-century (2046-2065) based on the simulated meteorology from 13 climate models under the A1B scenario. We develop ecoregion-dependent regressions using observed relationships between annual total area burned and a suite of meteorological variables and fire weather indices, and apply these regressions to the simulated meteorology. We find that for Alaska and western Canada, almost all models predict significant (p < 0.05) increases in area burned at the mid-century, with median values ranging from 150 to 390 %, depending on the ecoregion. Such changes are attributed to the higher surface air temperatures and 500 hPa geopotential heights relative to present day, which together lead to favorable conditions for wildfire spread. Elsewhere the model predictions are not as robust. For the central and southern Canadian ecoregions, the models predict increases in area burned of 45-90 %. Except for the Taiga Plain, where area burned decreases by 50 %, no robust trends are found in northern Canada, due to the competing effects of hotter weather and wetter conditions there. Using the GEOS-Chem chemical transport model, we find that changes in wildfire emissions alone increase mean summertime surface ozone levels by 5 ppbv for Alaska, 3 ppbv for Canada, and 1 ppbv for the western US by the mid-century. In the northwestern US states, local wildfire emissions at the mid-century enhance surface ozone by an average of 1 ppbv, while transport of boreal fire pollution further degrades ozone air quality by an additional 0.5 ppbv. The projected changes in wildfire activity increase daily summertime surface ozone above the 95th percentile by 1 ppbv in the northwestern US, 5 ppbv in the high latitudes of Canada, and 15 ppbv in Alaska, suggesting a greater frequency of pollution episodes in the future atmosphere.

  11. Effects of bark beetle outbreaks and wildfire in the western US on carbon stocks during recent decades

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hicke, J. A.; Meddens, A. J.; Allen, C. D.

    2012-12-01

    Bark beetle outbreaks and wildfires are significant forest disturbances that respond strongly to climate and affect future climate through carbon cycling. Extensive tree mortality has occurred in western North America as a result of these disturbances. Here we present an analysis that quantifies impacts of these two disturbances to tree carbon stocks. Mortality area from bark beetles was derived from aerial surveys in 1997-2010 in the western US and 2001-2010 in British Columbia that were converted to mortality area by multiplying by species-specific crown areas and, in the case of the US, adjusted for underestimation. We summed moderate- and high-severity burned areas in forests from the Monitoring Trends in Burn Severity (MTBS) database from 1984-2009 to estimate mortality area from forest fires. Mortality area was then combined with spatially explicit maps of carbon stocks to estimate the amount of carbon in killed trees. Notable findings include that the mortality area from bark beetle outbreaks in the western US was comparable to the mortality area in British Columbia during the last few decades. In the western US, mortality area from bark beetles was similar to or exceeded that from forest fires. Carbon stocks in trees killed by these two disturbance types (beetles and fire) had similar spatial and temporal patterns as tree mortality, illustrating the importance of each of these disturbances in governing regional forest carbon fluxes.

  12. Towards an improvement of carbon accounting for wildfires: incorporation of charcoal production into carbon emission models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doerr, Stefan H.; Santin, Cristina; de Groot, Bill

    2015-04-01

    Every year fires release to the atmosphere the equivalent to 20-30% of the carbon (C) emissions from fossil fuel consumption, with future emissions from wildfires expected to increase under a warming climate. Critically, however, part of the biomass C affected by fire is not emitted during burning, but converted into charcoal, which is very resistant to environmental degradation and, thus, contributes to long-term C sequestration. The magnitude of charcoal production from wildfires as a long-term C sink remains essentially unknown and, to the date, charcoal production has not been included in wildfire emission and C budget models. Here we present complete inventories of charcoal production in two fuel-rich, but otherwise very different ecosystems: i) a boreal conifer forest (experimental stand-replacing crown fire; Canada, 2012) and a dry eucalyptus forest (high-intensity fuel reduction burn; Australia 2014). Our data show that, when considering all the fuel components and quantifying all the charcoal produced from each (i.e. bark, dead wood debris, fine fuels), the overall amount of charcoal produced is significant: up to a third of the biomass C affected by fire. These findings indicate that charcoal production from wildfires could represent a major and currently unaccounted error in the estimation of the effects of wildfires in the global C balance. We suggest an initial approach to include charcoal production in C emission models, by using our case study of a boreal forest fire and the Canadian Fire Effects Model (CanFIRE). We also provide recommendations of how a 'conversion factor' for charcoal production could be relatively easily estimated when emission factors for different types of fuels and fire conditions are experimentally obtained. Ultimately, this presentation is a call for integrative collaboration between the fire emission modelling community and the charcoal community to work together towards the improvement of C accounting for wildfires.

  13. Effects of Wildfire on Fluvial Sediment Regime through Perturbations in Dry-Ravel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Florsheim, J. L.; Chin, A.; Kinoshita, A. M.; Nourbakhshbeidokhti, S.; Storesund, R.; Keller, E. A.

    2015-12-01

    In steep chaparral ecosystems with Mediterranean climate, dry ravel is a natural process resulting from wildfire disturbance that supplies sediment to fluvial systems. When dense chaparral vegetation burns, sediment accumulated on steep hillslopes is released for dry-season transport (dry ravel) down steep hillslopes during or soon after the wildfire. Results of a field study in southern California's Transverse Ranges illustrate the effect of wildfire on fluvial sediment regime in an unregulated chaparral system. Big Sycamore Canyon in the steep Santa Monica Mountains burned during the May 2013 Springs Fire and experienced one small sediment-transporting stormflow during the following winter. We conducted pre- and post-storm field campaigns during the fall and winter following the fire to quantify the effect of wildfire on the fluvial sediment regime. We utilized a sediment mass balance approach in which: 1) sediment supply, consisting primarily of dry ravel-derived deposits composed of relatively fine grained-sediment, was measured in the upstream basin and in the hillslope-channel margin adjacent to the study reach; 2) changes in storage in the study reach were quantified by analyzing the difference between pre- and post-storm channel topography derived from Terrestrial LiDAR Scanning (TLS) and field surveys; and 3) transport from the study reach was estimated as the difference between supply and change in storage where uncertainty is estimated using calculated sediment transport as a comparison. Results demonstrate channel deposition caused by changes in the short-term post-wildfire sediment regime. The increased sediment supply and storage are associated with significant changes in morphology, channel bed-material characteristics, and ecology. These results suggest that dry-ravel processes are an important factor to consider in post-wildfire sediment management.

  14. Post-Wildfire Impacts on Snow Accumulation and Melt: Hydrologic Implications for Headwater Catchments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gleason, K. E.; Nolin, A. W.; Roth, T. R.

    2012-12-01

    Reduced snowpacks and earlier snowmelt have been shown to affect fire frequency and severity in the western United States. Wildfire disturbance also affects patterns of snow accumulation and ablation by reducing canopy interception, increasing turbulent fluxes, and modifying the surface radiation balance. Recent work documenting snow-vegetation interactions in burned and unburned forests show that burned forests experience increased snow accumulation but earlier and more rapid melt. This investigation explores the albedo effect of wildfire on subsequent years' snowpack. Traditional conceptions of snow-vegetation interactions are based on studies focused on forest harvesting, not on fire-affected watersheds and no study to date has examined the albedo effect. At the local-to-watershed scale, wildfire-derived black carbon sloughing from burned trees onto the snowpack has been suggested as an important forcing of earlier melt and anecdotal evidence suggests that snowpacks in the wildfire areas appear to be experiencing this forcing. Our study area is a mountainous, dense forest at an elevation of about 1750 m in the Oregon Cascades that was burned in August 2011. Here we compare measurements of spectral albedo of snow that were acquired along transects through burned and unburned areas of the study site. Results show that snow albedo in the burned forest is about 50% lower than snow albedo in the nearby, unburned forest. Soot particles and burnt woody debris from charred trees accumulate at the snowpack surface darkening the snowpack and absorbing more radiant energy in the burned forest than in the unburned forest. Mass of debris accumulated at the snowpack surface is an order of magnitude greater in the high severity burned forest as compared to the nearby, unburned forest. We measured surface energy balance using data acquired at meteorological stations within the burned and unburned areas. Even with increased snow accumulation in the burned forest the snow

  15. Climate, CO2 and human population impacts on global wildfire emissions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knorr, W.; Jiang, L.; Arneth, A.

    2016-01-01

    Wildfires are by far the largest contributor to global biomass burning and constitute a large global source of atmospheric traces gases and aerosols. Such emissions have a considerable impact on air quality and constitute a major health hazard. Biomass burning also influences the radiative balance of the atmosphere and is thus not only of societal, but also of significant scientific interest. There is a common perception that climate change will lead to an increase in emissions as hot and dry weather events that promote wildfire will become more common. However, even though a few studies have found that the inclusion of CO2 fertilisation of photosynthesis and changes in human population patterns will tend to somewhat lower predictions of future wildfire emissions, no such study has included full ensemble ranges of both climate predictions and population projections, including the effect of different degrees of urbanisation.

    Here, we present a series of 124 simulations with the LPJ-GUESS-SIMFIRE global dynamic vegetation-wildfire model, including a semi-empirical formulation for the prediction of burned area based on fire weather, fuel continuity and human population density. The simulations use Climate Model Intercomparison Project 5 (CMIP5) climate predictions from eight Earth system models. These were combined with two Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) and five scenarios of future human population density based on the series of Shared Socioeconomic Pathways (SSPs) to assess the sensitivity of emissions to the effect of climate, CO2 and humans. In addition, two alternative parameterisations of the semi-empirical burned-area model were applied. Contrary to previous work, we find no clear future trend of global wildfire emissions for the moderate emissions and climate change scenario based on the RCP 4.5. Only historical population change introduces a decline by around 15 % since 1900. Future emissions could either increase for low population

  16. Epidemic cholera spreads like wildfire.

    PubMed

    Roy, Manojit; Zinck, Richard D; Bouma, Menno J; Pascual, Mercedes

    2014-01-15

    Cholera is on the rise globally, especially epidemic cholera which is characterized by intermittent and unpredictable outbreaks that punctuate periods of regional disease fade-out. These epidemic dynamics remain however poorly understood. Here we examine records for epidemic cholera over both contemporary and historical timelines, from Africa (1990-2006) and former British India (1882-1939). We find that the frequency distribution of outbreak size is fat-tailed, scaling approximately as a power-law. This pattern which shows strong parallels with wildfires is incompatible with existing cholera models developed for endemic regions, as it implies a fundamental role for stochastic transmission and local depletion of susceptible hosts. Application of a recently developed forest-fire model indicates that epidemic cholera dynamics are located above a critical phase transition and propagate in similar ways to aggressive wildfires. These findings have implications for the effectiveness of control measures and the mechanisms that ultimately limit the size of outbreaks.

  17. Epidemic cholera spreads like wildfire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roy, Manojit; Zinck, Richard D.; Bouma, Menno J.; Pascual, Mercedes

    2014-01-01

    Cholera is on the rise globally, especially epidemic cholera which is characterized by intermittent and unpredictable outbreaks that punctuate periods of regional disease fade-out. These epidemic dynamics remain however poorly understood. Here we examine records for epidemic cholera over both contemporary and historical timelines, from Africa (1990-2006) and former British India (1882-1939). We find that the frequency distribution of outbreak size is fat-tailed, scaling approximately as a power-law. This pattern which shows strong parallels with wildfires is incompatible with existing cholera models developed for endemic regions, as it implies a fundamental role for stochastic transmission and local depletion of susceptible hosts. Application of a recently developed forest-fire model indicates that epidemic cholera dynamics are located above a critical phase transition and propagate in similar ways to aggressive wildfires. These findings have implications for the effectiveness of control measures and the mechanisms that ultimately limit the size of outbreaks.

  18. The Effect of Wildfire on Soil Mercury Concentrations in Southern California Watersheds

    PubMed Central

    Ferreira, Marcia; Mendez, Carolina B.; Navarro, Bridget; Lopez, Sonya; Jay, Jennifer A.

    2010-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) stored in vegetation and soils is known to be released to the atmosphere during wildfires, increasing atmospheric stores and altering terrestrial budgets. Increased erosion and transport of sediments is well-documented in burned watersheds, both immediately post-fire and as the watershed recovers; however, understanding post-fire mobilization of soil Hg within burned watersheds remains elusive. The goal of the current study is to better understand the impact of wildfire on soil-bound Hg during the immediate post-fire period as well as during recovery, in order to assess the potential for sediment-driven transport to and within surface waters in burned watersheds. Soils were collected from three southern California watersheds of similar vegetation and soil characteristics that experienced wildfire. Sampling in one of these watersheds was extended for several seasons (1.5 years) in order to investigate temporal changes in soil Hg concentrations. Laboratory analysis included bulk soil total Hg concentrations and total organic carbon of burned and unburned samples. Soils were also fractionated into a subset of grain sizes with analysis of Hg on each fraction. Low Hg concentrations were observed in surface soils immediately post-fire. Accumulation of Hg coincident with moderate vegetative recovery was observed in the burned surface soils 1 year following the fire, and mobilization was also noted during the second winter (rainy) season. Hg concentrations were highest in the fine-grained fraction of unburned soils; however, in the burned soils, the distribution of soil-bound Hg was less influenced by grain size. The accelerated accumulation of Hg observed in the burned soils, along with the elevated risk of erosion, could result in increased delivery of organic- or particulate-bound Hg to surface waters in post-fire systems. PMID:20936165

  19. Succession Stages of Tundra Plant Communities Following Wildfire Disturbance in Arctic Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Breen, A. L.; Hollingsworth, T. N.; Mack, M. C.; Jones, B. M.

    2015-12-01

    Rapid climate change is affecting climate-sensitive disturbance regimes throughout the world. In particular, the impacts of climate change on Arctic disturbance regimes are poorly understood because landscape-scale disturbances are infrequent or occur in remote localities. Wildfire in Arctic Alaska is presently limited by ignition source and favorable burn weather. With rapid climate change, a lengthening growing season, and subsequent increase in plant biomass and productivity, wildfire frequency and annual area burned in tundra ecosystems is expected to increase over the next century. Yet, post-fire tundra vegetation succession is inadequately characterized except at a few point locations. We identify succession stages of tussock tundra communities following wildfire using a chronosequence of 65 relevés in 10 tundra fire scars (1971-2011) and nearby unburned tundra from sites on the Seward Peninsula and northern foothills of the Brooks Range. We used the Braun-Blanquét approach to classify plant communities, and applied nonmetric multidimentional scaling (NMDS) to identify ecological gradients underlying community differentiation. The ordination revealed a clear differentiation between unburned and burned tundra communities. Ecological gradients, reflected by ordination axes, correspond to fire history (e.g., time since last fire, number of times burned, burn severity) and a complex productivity gradient. Post-fire species richness is less than unburned tundra; primarily reflected as a decrease in lichen species and turnover of bryophyte species immediately post-fire. Species richness of grasses increases post-fire and is greatest in communities that burned more than once in the past 30 years. Shrub cover and total aboveground biomass are greatest in repeat burn sites. We review and discuss our results focusing on the implications of a changing tundra fire regime, its effect on vegetation succession trajectories, and subsequent rates of carbon sequestration and

  20. The Growing Public Health Impact of Wildfire Smoke Emissions Webinar

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    This is a brief discussion of wildfire smoke and its health effects along with tools available to provide public health guidance during wildfire events, including the Wildfire Smoke Guide for Public Health Officials

  1. 78 FR 21340 - Information Collection: Annual Wildfire Summary Report

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-04-10

    ... Forest Service Information Collection: Annual Wildfire Summary Report AGENCY: Forest Service, USDA... a currently approved information collection; Annual Wildfire Summary Report. DATES: Comments must be... of the year, including holidays. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Title: Annual Wildfire Summary...

  2. Factors related to building loss due to wildfires in the conterminous United States.

    PubMed

    Alexandre, Patricia M; Stewart, Susan I; Keuler, Nicholas S; Clayton, Murray K; Mockrin, Miranda H; Bar-Massada, Avi; Syphard, Alexandra D; Radeloff, Volker C

    2016-10-01

    Wildfire is globally an important ecological disturbance affecting biochemical cycles and vegetation composition, but also puts people and their homes at risk. Suppressing wildfires has detrimental ecological effects and can promote larger and more intense wildfires when fuels accumulate, which increases the threat to buildings in the wildland-urban interface (WUI). Yet, when wildfires occur, typically only a small proportion of the buildings within the fire perimeter are lost, and the question is what determines which buildings burn. Our goal was to examine which factors are related to building loss when a wildfire occurs throughout the United States. We were particularly interested in the relative roles of vegetation, topography, and the spatial arrangement of buildings, and how their respective roles vary among ecoregions. We analyzed all fires that occurred within the conterminous United States from 2000 to 2010 and digitized which buildings were lost and which survived according to Google Earth historical imagery. We modeled the occurrence as well as the percentage of buildings lost within clusters using logistic and linear regression. Overall, variables related to topography and the spatial arrangement of buildings were more frequently present in the best 20 regression models than vegetation-related variables. In other words, specific locations in the landscape have a higher fire risk, and certain development patterns can exacerbate that risk. Fire policies and prevention efforts focused on vegetation management are important, but insufficient to solve current wildfire problems. Furthermore, the factors associated with building loss varied considerably among ecoregions suggesting that fire policy applied uniformly across the United States will not work equally well in all regions and that efforts to adapt communities to wildfires must be regionally tailored.

  3. Observations of the Changing Spatial Patterns of Post-Wildfire Erosion and Deposition Using Terrestrial LIDAR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rengers, F. K.; Tucker, G. E.; Moody, J. A.

    2014-12-01

    After a wildfire in forested terrain, erosion is typically much greater than background forest erosion. This is due to changes in soil erodibility and water infiltration that follow wildfire. Many prior studies have documented the changes in erosional magnitude following wildfire, but this study examines how the erosion/deposition is spatially distributed. This is only possible due to the use of terrestrial LiDAR, which allows us to track centimeter-scale changes in soil depth. With terrestrial LiDAR data we are able to show how erosion and depositional patterns change over time as the landscape recovers from the wildfire disturbance. These high-resolution data represent a critical step forward for efforts to understand the sources/sinks of erosion after wildfire. This study was conducted on a hillslope burned by the 2010 Fourmile Canyon wildfire approximately 15 km west of Boulder, CO. The first LiDAR survey was conducted within 3 weeks of the wildfire and before any significant rainstorms. Four more LiDAR surveys were conducted over a two-year period. These surveys were conducted before and after large rainstorms, so that the erosional effect of large rainstorms could be observed. The changing patterns of erosion/deposition over time were observed by differencing the topographic datasets created from each LiDAR survey. Our results show a hysteresis in the geomorphic change. The erosional response after rainstorms was strongly influenced by the previous erosional events and pre-existing site morphology. The overall erosion pattern is patchy because much of the erosion is locally interrupted by immobile objects such as boulders, bedrock, or trees. Over the entire study period we documented that the volume of sediment eroded from hillslopes was nearly twice as high as volume eroded from convergent areas; however, when the erosion is expressed as a yield per unit area the yield from convergent areas was greater than the yield from hillslope areas.

  4. Understanding the transmission of wildfire risk on a fire prone landscape - A Case study from Central Oregon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ager, Alan; Barros, Ana; Day, Michelle; Preisler, Haiganoush; Evers, Cody

    2015-04-01

    We develop the idea of risk transmission from large wildfires and apply network analyses to understand its importance within the 3.2 million ha Fire-People-Forest study area in central Oregon, US. Historic wildfires within the study and elsewhere in the western US frequently burn over long distances (e.g., 20-50 km) through highly fragmented landscapes with respect to ownership, fuels, management intensity, population density, and ecological conditions. The collective arrangement of fuel loadings in concert with weather and suppression efforts ultimately determines containment and the resulting fire perimeter. While spatial interactions among land parcels in terms of fire spread and intensity have been frequently noted by fire managers, quantifying risk and exposure transmission is not well understood. In this paper we used simulation modeling to quantify wildfire transmission and built a transmission network among and within land owners and communities within the study area. The results suggested that 84% of the predicted area burned within the 25 communities in the study area was from simulated fires that ignited on federal lands. The wildland urban interface surrounding the communities was predicted to burn at a rate of 2 % per year, with 57% of the area burned from fires ignited on federal lands. The node degree for communities indicated that simulated fires originated on about 6 different landowners. Network analyses in general revealed independent variation in transmitted fire among landowners in terms of both node degree (diversity of landowners exchanging fire) and transmitted fire, indicating that both the spatial grain of land ownership and wildfire topology contribute to transmission among land parcels. We discuss how network analyses of wildfire transmission can inform fire management goals for creating fire adapted communities, conserving biodiversity, and resolving competing demands for fire-prone ecosystem services. We also discuss how biophysical

  5. Evaluation of regionally-collected sideoats grams and big galleta grass for wildfire revegetation in the Eastern Upper Mojave Desert

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Increased wildfires in the western U.S. are due to the cyclic accumulation and burning of invasive annual plants such as cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) and red brome (B. rubens), which reduces native rangeland species and results in severe economic losses and land degradation. Fire was not prevalent ...

  6. Evaluation of regionally-collected sideoats grama and big galleta grass for wildfire revegetation in the Eastern Upper Mojave Desert

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Increased wildfires in the western U.S. are due to the cyclic accumulation and burning of invasive annual plants such as cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) and red brome (B. rubens), which reduces native rangeland species and results in servere economic losses and land degradation. Fire was not prevalent...

  7. Metagenomic assessment of the potential microbial nitrogen pathways in the rhizosphere of a mediterranean forest after a wildfire.

    PubMed

    Cobo-Díaz, José F; Fernández-González, Antonio J; Villadas, Pablo J; Robles, Ana B; Toro, Nicolás; Fernández-López, Manuel

    2015-05-01

    Wildfires are frequent in the forests of the Mediterranean Basin and have greatly influenced this ecosystem. Changes to the physical and chemical properties of the soil, due to fire and post-fire conditions, result in alterations of both the bacterial communities and the nitrogen cycle. We explored the effects of a holm oak forest wildfire on the rhizospheric bacterial communities involved in the nitrogen cycle. Metagenomic data of the genes involved in the nitrogen cycle showed that both the undisturbed and burned rhizospheres had a conservative nitrogen cycle with a larger number of sequences related to the nitrogen incorporation pathways and a lower number for nitrogen output. However, the burned rhizosphere showed a statistically significant increase in the number of sequences for nitrogen incorporation (allantoin utilization and nitrogen fixation) and a significantly lower number of sequences for denitrification and dissimilatory nitrite reductase subsystems, possibly in order to compensate for nitrogen loss from the soil after burning. The genetic potential for nitrogen incorporation into the ecosystem was assessed through the diversity of the nitrogenase reductase enzyme, which is encoded by the nifH gene. We found that nifH gene diversity and richness were lower in burned than in undisturbed rhizospheric soils. The structure of the bacterial communities involved in the nitrogen cycle showed a statistically significant increase of Actinobacteria and Firmicutes phyla after the wildfire. Both approaches showed the important role of gram-positive bacteria in the ecosystem after a wildfire.

  8. Hydrologic Effects of Clearcutting and Wildfire on Steep Granitic Slopes in Idaho

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Megahan, Walter F.

    1983-06-01

    Many of the environmental impacts of logging and wildfire are caused by changes in the hydrologic response of slopes after disturbances. This study was conducted to evaluate changes in inflow, storage, and outflow for 3-year periods before and after clearcut logging and wildfire on two steep, granitic microwatersheds in Idaho. Clearcutting alone and clearcutting plus wildfire increased annual peak snow water equivalent and snowmelt rates an average of 41% and 30%, respectively. The greater volume and rate of snowmelt caused respective increases in the peak piezometric rise and in total piezometric storage, amounting to 47% and 27%. Accordingly, the total volume of subsurface flow intercepted by the roadcut was increased 96% and was accompanied by 27% greater peak flow rates. None of the above responses were detectable on an adjacent watershed that was burned by wildfire alone. Evapotranspiration was reduced on both watersheds after clearcutting or wildfire, as indicated by increases in the unsaturated soil water content at the end of the growing season amounting to 44 and 72%, respectively. Accelerated mass erosion on clearcut slopes, and accelerated surface and mass erosion on roads and in channels below roads, can result from such changes.

  9. Impacts of increasing aridity and wildfires on aerosol loading in the intermountain Western US

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gannet Hallar, A.; Molotch, Noah P.; Hand, Jenny L.; Livneh, Ben; McCubbin, Ian B.; Petersen, Ross; Michalsky, Joseph; Lowenthal, Douglas; Kunkel, Kenneth E.

    2017-01-01

    Feedbacks between climate warming, land surface aridity, and wildfire-derived aerosols represent a large source of uncertainty in future climate predictions. Here, long-term observations of aerosol optical depth, surface level aerosol loading, fire-area burned, and hydrologic simulations are used to show that regional-scale increases in aridity and resulting wildfires have significantly increased summertime aerosol loading in remote high elevation regions of the Intermountain West of the United States. Surface summertime organic aerosol loading and total aerosol optical depth were both strongly correlated (p < 0.05) with aridity and fire area burned at high elevation sites across major western US mountain ranges. These results demonstrate that surface-level organic aerosol loading is dominated by summertime wildfires at many high elevation sites. This analysis provides new constraints for climate projections on the influence of drought and resulting wildfires on aerosol loading. These empirical observations will help better constrain projected increases in organic aerosol loading with increased fire activity under climate change.

  10. Wildfires, Ecosystem Services, and Biodiversity in Tropical Dry Forest in India.

    PubMed

    Schmerbeck, Joachim; Fiener, Peter

    2015-08-01

    This review is intended to contribute to the understanding of the interlinkage between wildfire in India's tropical dry forest (TDF) and selected ecosystem services (ES), namely forest provisioning and water regulating services, as well as biodiversity. TDF covers approximately 146,000 km(2) (4.4%) of India, whereas according to the MODIS fire product about 2200 km(2) (1.4%) burns per year. As studies on wildfire effects upon ESs and biodiversity in Indian TDFs are rare we partly transferred findings from other (dry) forest areas to the environmental situation in India. In India (intentionally lit) wildfires have a very important connection to local livelihoods and the availability of non-wood forest products. Very important adverse long-term effects are the deterioration of forest ecosystems and soil degradation. The potential for TDF to regulate hydrological cycles is expected to be greater in the absence of fire than with it. A general judgment on the effect of fire on biodiversity is difficult as it depends on the community and species involved but a loss of biodiversity under regular burnings is apparent. Consequently, forest managers need sound knowledge regarding the interplay of wildfires and ecosystem behavior in general and more specific knowledge regarding the effects on taxa being considered for conservation efforts. Generally, much more research is needed to understand the trade-offs between the short-term benefits gained from forest provisioning services and long-term adverse effects.

  11. The 2007 southern California wildfires: Lessons in complexity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Keeley, J.E.; Safford, H.; Fotheringham, C.J.; Franklin, J.; Moritz, M.

    2009-01-01

    The 2007 wildfire season in southern California burned over 1,000,000 ac (400,000 ha) and included several megafires. We use the 2007 fires as a case study to draw three major lessons about wildfires and wildfire complexity in southern California. First, the great majority of large fires in southern California occur in the autumn under the influence of Santa Ana windstorms. These fires also cost the most to contain and cause the most damage to life and property, and the October 2007 fires were no exception because thousands of homes were lost and seven people were killed. Being pushed by wind gusts over 100 kph, young fuels presented little barrier to their spread as the 2007 fires reburned considerable portions of the area burned in the historic 2003 fire season. Adding to the size of these fires was the historic 2006-2007 drought that contributed to high dead fuel loads and long distance spotting. As in 2003, young chaparral stands and fuel treatments were not reliable barriers to fire in October 2007. Second, the Zaca Fire in July and August 2007 showed that other factors besides high winds can sometimes combine to create conditions for large fires in southern California. Spring and summer fires in southern California chaparral are usually easily contained because of higher fuel moisture and the general lack of high winds. However, the Zaca Fire burned in a remote wilderness area of rugged terrain that made access difficult. In addition, because of its remoteness, anthropogenic ignitions have been low and stand age and fuel loads were high. Coupled with this was severe drought that year that generated fuel moisture levels considerably below normal for early summer. A third lesson comes from 2007 conifer forest fires in the southern California mountains. In contrast to lower elevation chaparral, fire suppression has led to major increases in conifer forest fuels that can lead to unnaturally severe fires when ignitions escape control. The Slide and Grass Valley

  12. Wildfire Danger Potential in California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kafatos, M.; Myoung, B.; Kim, S. H.; Fujioka, F. M.; Kim, J.

    2015-12-01

    Wildfires are an important concern in California (CA) which is characterized by the semi-arid to arid climate and vegetation types. Highly variable winter precipitation and extended hot and dry warm season in the region challenge an effective strategic fire management. Climatologically, the fire season which is based on live fuel moisture (LFM) of generally below 80% in Los Angeles County spans 4 months from mid-July to mid-November, but it has lasted over 7 months in the past several years. This behavior is primarily due to the ongoing drought in CA during the last decade, which is responsible for frequent outbreaks of severe wildfires in the region. Despite their importance, scientific advances for the recent changes in wildfire risk and effective assessments of wildfire risk are lacking. In the present study, we show impacts of large-scale atmospheric circulations on an early start and then extended length of fire seasons. For example, the strong relationships of North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) with springtime temperature and precipitation in the SWUS that was recently revealed by our team members have led to an examination of the possible impact of NAO on wildfire danger in the spring. Our results show that the abnormally warm and dry spring conditions associated with positive NAO phases can cause an early start of a fire season and high fire risks throughout the summer and fall. For an effective fire danger assessment, we have tested the capability of satellite vegetation indices (VIs) in replicating in situ LFM of Southern CA chaparral ecosystems by 1) comparing seasonal/interannual characteristics of in-situ LFM with VIs and 2) developing an empirical model function of LFM. Unlike previous studies attempting a point-to-point comparison, we attempt to examine the LFM relationship with VIs averaged over different areal coverage with chamise-dominant grids (i.e., 0.5 km to 25 km radius circles). Lastly, we discuss implications of the results for fire danger

  13. Wildfire Suppression Costs for Canada under a Changing Climate

    PubMed Central

    Stocks, Brian J.; Gauthier, Sylvie

    2016-01-01

    Climate-influenced changes in fire regimes in northern temperate and boreal regions will have both ecological and economic ramifications. We examine possible future wildfire area burned and suppression costs using a recently compiled historical (i.e., 1980–2009) fire management cost database for Canada and several Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) climate projections. Area burned was modelled as a function of a climate moisture index (CMI), and fire suppression costs then estimated as a function of area burned. Future estimates of area burned were generated from projections of the CMI under two emissions pathways for four General Circulation Models (GCMs); these estimates were constrained to ecologically reasonable values by incorporating a minimum fire return interval of 20 years. Total average annual national fire management costs are projected to increase to just under $1 billion (a 60% real increase from the 1980–2009 period) under the low greenhouse gas emissions pathway and $1.4 billion (119% real increase from the base period) under the high emissions pathway by the end of the century. For many provinces, annual costs that are currently considered extreme (i.e., occur once every ten years) are projected to become commonplace (i.e., occur once every two years or more often) as the century progresses. It is highly likely that evaluations of current wildland fire management paradigms will be necessary to avoid drastic and untenable cost increases as the century progresses. PMID:27513660

  14. Wildfire Suppression Costs for Canada under a Changing Climate.

    PubMed

    Hope, Emily S; McKenney, Daniel W; Pedlar, John H; Stocks, Brian J; Gauthier, Sylvie

    2016-01-01

    Climate-influenced changes in fire regimes in northern temperate and boreal regions will have both ecological and economic ramifications. We examine possible future wildfire area burned and suppression costs using a recently compiled historical (i.e., 1980-2009) fire management cost database for Canada and several Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) climate projections. Area burned was modelled as a function of a climate moisture index (CMI), and fire suppression costs then estimated as a function of area burned. Future estimates of area burned were generated from projections of the CMI under two emissions pathways for four General Circulation Models (GCMs); these estimates were constrained to ecologically reasonable values by incorporating a minimum fire return interval of 20 years. Total average annual national fire management costs are projected to increase to just under $1 billion (a 60% real increase from the 1980-2009 period) under the low greenhouse gas emissions pathway and $1.4 billion (119% real increase from the base period) under the high emissions pathway by the end of the century. For many provinces, annual costs that are currently considered extreme (i.e., occur once every ten years) are projected to become commonplace (i.e., occur once every two years or more often) as the century progresses. It is highly likely that evaluations of current wildland fire management paradigms will be necessary to avoid drastic and untenable cost increases as the century progresses.

  15. Area burned in the western United States is unaffected by recent mountain pine beetle outbreaks

    PubMed Central

    Hart, Sarah J.; Schoennagel, Tania; Veblen, Thomas T.; Chapman, Teresa B.

    2015-01-01

    In the western United States, mountain pine beetles (MPBs) have killed pine trees across 71,000 km2 of forest since the mid-1990s, leading to widespread concern that abundant dead fuels may increase area burned and exacerbate fire behavior. Although stand-level fire behavior models suggest that bark beetle-induced tree mortality increases flammability of stands by changing canopy and forest floor fuels, the actual effect of an MPB outbreak on subsequent wildfire activity remains widely debated. To address this knowledge gap, we superimposed areas burned on areas infested by MPBs for the three peak years of wildfire activity since 2002 across the western United States. Here, we show that the observed effect of MPB infestation on the area burned in years of extreme fire appears negligible at broad spatial extents. Contrary to the expectation of increased wildfire activity in recently infested red-stage stands, we found no difference between observed area and expected area burned in red-stage or subsequent gray-stage stands during three peak years of wildfire activity, which account for 46% of area burned during the 2002–2013 period. Although MPB infestation and fire activity both independently increased in conjunction with recent warming, our results demonstrate that the annual area burned in the western United States has not increased in direct response to bark beetle activity. Therefore, policy discussions should focus on societal adaptation to the effects of recent increases in wildfire activity related to increased drought severity. PMID:25831541

  16. Smoke from Colorado Wildfires

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    The Hayman fire, situated about 65 kilometers southwest of Denver, Colorado, is the largest fire ever recorded in that state. The amount and distribution of smoke from the Hayman fire and from the Ponil Complex fires south of the New Mexico-Colorado border are portrayed in these views from the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR). The images were captured on June 9, 2002, on the second day of the Hayman fire, when only about 13 percent of the total 137,000 acres eventually consumed had been scorched.

    The image at top-left was acquired by MISR's most oblique (70-degree) forward-viewing camera, and the view at bottom-left was captured by MISR's 26-degree forward-viewing camera. Both left-hand panels are 'false color' views, utilizing near-infrared, red, and blue spectral bands displayed as red, green and blue respectively. With this spectral combination, highly vegetated areas appear red. At top right is a map of aerosol optical depth. This map utilizes the capability of the oblique view angles to measure the abundance of particles in the atmosphere. Haze distributed across the eastern part of the state is indicated by a large number of green pixels, and areas where no retrieval occurred are shown in dark grey. The more oblique perspective utilized within the top panels enhances the appearance of smoke and reveals the haze. In the lower left-hand panel the view is closer to nadir (downward-looking). Here the smoke plumes appear more compact and the haze across eastern Colorado is not detected. The lower right-hand panel is a stereoscopically derived height field that echoes the compact shape of the smoke plumes in the near-nadir image. Results indicate that the smoke plumes reached altitudes of a few kilometers above the surface terrain, or about the same height as the small clouds that appear orange along the bottom edge to the left of center.

    Data used in these visualizations were generated as part of operational processing at the Atmospheric

  17. Modeling post-wildfire fluvial incision and terrace formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rengers, F. K.; Tucker, G. E.

    2013-12-01

    Wildfires often lead to rapid erosion, sedimentation, and morphologic change. One of the challenges in developing quantitative models of post-fire landscape dynamics is a lack of high-quality datasets that document fluvial system evolution in the years to decades following a destructive fire. This study takes advantage of a natural experiment in post-fire fluvial incision to explore how the magnitude and timing of large flow events following a wildfire can change fluvial channel patterns. The study site is the Spring Creek watershed located in the foothills of central Colorado approximately 26 miles southwest of Denver, Colorado. The site burned during the Buffalo Creek wildfire, which was contained in May 1996. Within the Spring Creek watershed, 79% of the basin was burned and 63% of the burned area was considered high severity (Moody and Martin, 2001). In July 1996 a large rain storm hit the burned watershed and 110 mm of rain fell in one hour (Jarrett, 2001). This storm was larger than the estimated 100-year rainfall intensity of 60 mm/hr. Due to the increased surface erodibility after the wildfire, rapid erosion occurred within the watershed, while the main valley of Spring Creek aggraded with up to 2 m of sediment after this storm. Spring Creek has been incising through this post-wildfire sediment since the 1996 storm, and the terraces from this initial storm are still prevalent and identifiable along the valley. Repeated measurements of valley cross-sections since 1996 provide a comprehensive dataset for testing models of fluvial-system evolution on a decadal time scale. We hypothesize that the current channel pattern results from the specific sequence of rain events that occurred within the four years after the initial 1996 storm filled the valley with sediment. This hypothesis was tested using a two-dimensional coupled model of shallow-water flow, sediment transport, and topographic evolution. Discharge data were obtained from a stream gage installed at

  18. The Influence of Wildfire on Hillslope Geometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rengers, F. K.; Inbar, A.; Sheridan, G. J.; Nyman, P.

    2014-12-01

    In southeastern Australia wildfire occurs regularly, resulting in increased hillslope erosion. However, post-wildfire erosion processes differ depending on hillslope aspect. Equatorial (north)-facing slopes are drier than polar (south)-facing slopes and experience overland flow erosion after wildfire. By contrast, overland flow is not an active process on polar-facing slopes, even after high-intensity wildfires. These differences in post-wildfire erosion processes are accompanied by observations that slope angle and curvature also differ by hillslope aspect. An airborne LiDAR dataset flown over our study area in the Kinglake National Park, Victoria shows that the mean slope angle of polar-facing slopes is nearly 5 degrees steeper than equatorial-facing slopes. We have sought to test the hypothesis that aspect differences in post-wildfire erosion processes are sufficient to create differences in hillslope geometry. In order to test this hypothesis, we use a simple 1D model that simulates hillslope evolution over thousands of years. We limit our model to low-drainage area hillslopes where debris-flows are unlikely to occur. Erosion is modeled as nonlinear diffusion regardless of aspect during non-wildfire model years. Wildfire is modeled by changing the erosional processes on each slope aspect to reflect the effects of post-wildfire erosion according to a wildfire recurrence interval. For two years following a model wildfire we allow overland flow erosion to erode equatorial-facing slopes, whereas polar-facing slopes erode according to nonlinear diffusion for only one year following a wildfire. The erosion parameters on the polar-facing slopes are changed during this period to reflect higher post-wildfire erosion. In addition to erosional processes, we use an exponential soil production law to simulate new soil formation every model year. Our preliminary results suggest that changes in erosional magnitude associated with the different wildfire erosional processes are

  19. Temporal variations of disinfection byproduct precursors in wildfire detritus.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jun-Jian; Dahlgren, Randy A; Erşan, Mahmut S; Karanfil, Tanju; Chow, Alex T

    2016-08-01

    The Rim Fire ignited on August 17, 2013 and became the third largest wildfire in California history. The fire consumed 104,131 ha of forested watersheds that were the drinking water source for 2.6 million residents in the San Francisco Bay area. To understand temporal variations in dissolved organic matter (DOM) after the wildfire and its potential impacts on disinfection byproduct (DBP) formation in source water supply, we collected the 0-5 cm ash/soil layer with surface deposits of white ash (high burn severity) and black ash (moderate burn severity) within the Rim Fire perimeter in Oct 2013 (pre-rainfall) for five sequential extractions, and in Dec 2013 (∼87 mm cumulative precipitation) and Aug 2014 (∼617 mm cumulative precipitation) for a single water extraction. Water-extractable DOM was characterized by absorption and fluorescence spectroscopy and DBP formation tests. Both increasing cumulative precipitation in the field or number of extractions in the lab resulted in a significant decrease in specific conductivity, dissolved organic carbon, and DBP formation potential, but an increase in DOM aromaticity (reflected by specific UV absorbance). However, the lab sequential leaching failed to capture the increase of the NOx(-)-N/NH4(+)-N ratio and the decrease in pH and dissolved organic carbon/nitrogen ratio of ash/soil extracts from Oct 2013 to Aug 2014. Increasing cumulative precipitation, inferring an increase in leaching after fire, led to an increase in DOM reactivity to form trihalomethanes, haloacetic acids, and chloral hydrate, but not for haloketones, haloacetonitrile, or N-nitrosodimethylamine, which were more related to the original burn severity. This study highlights that fire-affected DBP precursors for different DBP species have distinct temporal variation possibly due to their various sensitivity to biogeochemical alterations.

  20. Water resources planning for a river basin with recurrent wildfires.

    PubMed

    Santos, R M B; Sanches Fernandes, L F; Pereira, M G; Cortes, R M V; Pacheco, F A L

    2015-09-01

    Situated in the north of Portugal, the Beça River basin is subject to recurrent wildfires, which produce serious consequences on soil erosion and nutrient exports, namely by deteriorating the water quality in the basin. In the present study, the ECO Lab tool embedded in the Mike Hydro Basin software was used for the evaluation of river water quality, in particular the dissolved concentration of phosphorus in the period 1990-2013. The phosphorus concentrations are influenced by the burned area and the river flow discharge, but the hydrologic conditions prevail: in a wet year (2000, 16.3 km(2) of burned area) with an average flow of 16.4 m(3)·s(-1) the maximum phosphorus concentration was as low as 0.02 mg·L(-1), while in a dry year (2005, 24.4 km(2) of burned area) with an average flow of 2 m(3)·s(-1) the maximum concentration was as high as 0.57 mg·L(-1). Phosphorus concentrations in the water bodies exceeded the bounds of good ecological status in 2005 and between 2009 and 2012, water for human consumption in 2009 and water for multiple uses in 2010. The River Covas, a right margin tributary of Beça River, is the most appropriate stream as regards the use of water for human consumption, because it presents the biggest water potential with the best water quality. Since wildfires in the basin result essentially from natural causes and climate change forecasts indicate an increase in their frequency and intensity in the near future, forestry measures are proposed to include as a priority the conversion of stands of maritime pine in mixed stands of conifer and hardwood species.

  1. Automated Wildfire Detection Through Artificial Neural Networks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miller, Jerry; Borne, Kirk; Thomas, Brian; Huang, Zhenping; Chi, Yuechen

    2005-01-01

    Wildfires have a profound impact upon the biosphere and our society in general. They cause loss of life, destruction of personal property and natural resources and alter the chemistry of the atmosphere. In response to the concern over the consequences of wildland fire and to support the fire management community, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), National Environmental Satellite, Data and Information Service (NESDIS) located in Camp Springs, Maryland gradually developed an operational system to routinely monitor wildland fire by satellite observations. The Hazard Mapping System, as it is known today, allows a team of trained fire analysts to examine and integrate, on a daily basis, remote sensing data from Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES), Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) and Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) satellite sensors and generate a 24 hour fire product for the conterminous United States. Although assisted by automated fire detection algorithms, N O M has not been able to eliminate the human element from their fire detection procedures. As a consequence, the manually intensive effort has prevented NOAA from transitioning to a global fire product as urged particularly by climate modelers. NASA at Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland is helping N O M more fully automate the Hazard Mapping System by training neural networks to mimic the decision-making process of the frre analyst team as well as the automated algorithms.

  2. Sediment availability on burned hillslopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nyman, Petter; Sheridan, Gary J.; Moody, John A.; Smith, Hugh G.; Noske, Philip J.; Lane, Patrick N. J.

    2013-12-01

    describes the inherent resistance of soil to erosion. Hillslope erosion models typically consider erodibility to be constant with depth. This may not be the case after wildfire because erodibility is partly determined by the availability of noncohesive soil and ash at the surface. This study quantifies erodibility of burned soils using methods that explicitly capture variations in soil properties with depth. Flume experiments on intact cores from three sites in western United States showed that erodibility of fire-affected soil was highest at the soil surface and declined exponentially within the top 20 mm of the soil profile, with root density and soil depth accounting for 62% of the variation. Variation in erodibility with depth resulted in transient sediment flux during erosion experiments on bounded field plots. Material that contributed to transient flux was conceptualized as a layer of noncohesive material of variable depth (dnc). This depth was related to shear strength measurements and sampled spatially to obtain the probability distribution of noncohesive material as a function of depth below the surface. After wildfire in southeast Australia, the initial dnc ranged from 7.5 to 9.1 mm, which equated to 97-117 Mg ha-1 of noncohesive material. The depth decreased exponentially with time since wildfire to 0.4 mm (or < 5 Mg ha-1) after 3 years of recovery. The results are organized into a framework for modeling fire effects on erodibility as a function of the production and depletion of the noncohesive layer overlying a cohesive layer.

  3. Burn Wise

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Burn Wise is a partnership program of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that emphasizes the importance of burning the right wood, the right way, in the right appliance to protect your home, health, and the air we breathe.

  4. Wildfire impacts on soil-water retention in the Colorado Front Range, United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ebel, Brian A.

    2012-01-01

    This work examined the plot-scale differences in soil-water retention caused by wildfire in the area of the 2010 Fourmile Canyon Fire in the Colorado Front Range, United States. We measured soil-water retention curves on intact cores and repacked samples, soil particle-size distributions, and organic matter content. Estimates were also made of plant-available water based on the soil-water retention curves. Parameters for use in soil-hydraulic property models were estimated; these parameters can be used in unsaturated flow modeling for comparing burned and unburned watersheds. The primary driver for measured differences in soil-water retention in burned and unburned soils was organic matter content and not soil-particle size distribution. The tendency for unburned south-facing soils to have greater organic matter content than unburned north-facing soils in this field area may explain why unburned south-facing soils had greater soil-water retention than unburned north-facing soils. Our results suggest that high-severity wildfire can “homogenize” soil-water retention across the landscape by erasing soil-water retention differences resulting from organic matter content, which for this site may be affected by slope aspect. This homogenization could have important implications for ecohydrology and plant succession/recovery in burned areas, which could be a factor in dictating the window of vulnerability of the landscape to flash floods and erosion that are a common consequence of wildfire.

  5. Interacting disturbances: wildfire severity affected by stage of forest disease invasion.

    PubMed

    Metz, Margaret R; Frangioso, Kerri M; Meentemeyer, Ross K; Rizzo, David M

    2011-03-01

    Sudden oak death (SOD) is an emerging forest disease causing extensive tree mortality in coastal California forests. Recent California wildfires provided an opportunity to test a major assumption underlying discussions of SOD and land management: SOD mortality will increase fire severity. We examined prefire fuels from host species in a forest monitoring plot network in Big Sur, California (USA), to understand the interactions between disease-caused mortality and wildfire severity during the 2008 Basin Complex wildfire. Detailed measurements of standing dead woody stems and downed woody debris 1-2 years prior to the Basin fire provided a rare picture of the increased fuels attributable to SOD mortality. Despite great differences in host fuel abundance, we found no significant difference in burn severity between infested and uninfested plots. Instead, the relationship between SOD and fire reflected the changing nature of the disease impacts over time. Increased SOD mortality contributed to overstory burn severity only in areas where the pathogen had recently invaded. Where longer-term disease establishment allowed dead material to fall and accumulate, increasing log volumes led to increased substrate burn severity. These patterns help inform forest management decisions regarding fire, both in Big Sur and in other areas of California as the pathogen continues to expand throughout coastal forests.

  6. Wildfire impacts on soil-water retention in the Colorado Front Range, United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ebel, Brian A.

    2012-12-01

    This work examined the plot-scale differences in soil-water retention caused by wildfire in the area of the 2010 Fourmile Canyon Fire in the Colorado Front Range, United States. We measured soil-water retention curves on intact cores and repacked samples, soil particle-size distributions, and organic matter content. Estimates were also made of plant-available water based on the soil-water retention curves. Parameters for use in soil-hydraulic property models were estimated; these parameters can be used in unsaturated flow modeling for comparing burned and unburned watersheds. The primary driver for measured differences in soil-water retention in burned and unburned soils was organic matter content and not soil-particle size distribution. The tendency for unburned south-facing soils to have greater organic matter content than unburned north-facing soils in this field area may explain why unburned south-facing soils had greater soil-water retention than unburned north-facing soils. Our results suggest that high-severity wildfire can "homogenize" soil-water retention across the landscape by erasing soil-water retention differences resulting from organic matter content, which for this site may be affected by slope aspect. This homogenization could have important implications for ecohydrology and plant succession/recovery in burned areas, which could be a factor in dictating the window of vulnerability of the landscape to flash floods and erosion that are a common consequence of wildfire.

  7. Housing arrangement and location determine the likelihood of housing loss due to wildfire

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Syphard, Alexandra D.; Keeley, Jon E.; Massada, Avi Bar; Brennan, Teresa J.; Radeloff, Volker C.

    2012-01-01

    Surging wildfires across the globe are contributing to escalating residential losses and have major social, economic, and ecological consequences. The highest losses in the U.S. occur in southern California, where nearly 1000 homes per year have been destroyed by wildfires since 2000. Wildfire risk reduction efforts focus primarily on fuel reduction and, to a lesser degree, on house characteristics and homeowner responsibility. However, the extent to which land use planning could alleviate wildfire risk has been largely missing from the debate despite large numbers of homes being placed in the most hazardous parts of the landscape. Our goal was to examine how housing location and arrangement affects the likelihood that a home will be lost when a wildfire occurs. We developed an extensive geographic dataset of structure locations, including more than 5500 structures that were destroyed or damaged by wildfire since 2001, and identified the main contributors to property loss in two extensive, fire-prone regions in southern California. The arrangement and location of structures strongly affected their susceptibility to wildfire, with property loss most likely at low to intermediate structure densities and in areas with a history of frequent fire. Rates of structure loss were higher when structures were surrounded by wildland vegetation, but were generally higher in herbaceous fuel types than in higher fuel-volume woody types. Empirically based maps developed using housing pattern and location performed better in distinguishing hazardous from non-hazardous areas than maps based on fuel distribution. The strong importance of housing arrangement and location indicate that land use planning may be a critical tool for reducing fire risk, but it will require reliable delineations of the most hazardous locations.

  8. Housing arrangement and location determine the likelihood of housing loss due to wildfire.

    PubMed

    Syphard, Alexandra D; Keeley, Jon E; Massada, Avi Bar; Brennan, Teresa J; Radeloff, Volker C

    2012-01-01

    Surging wildfires across the globe are contributing to escalating residential losses and have major social, economic, and ecological consequences. The highest losses in the U.S. occur in southern California, where nearly 1000 homes per year have been destroyed by wildfires since 2000. Wildfire risk reduction efforts focus primarily on fuel reduction and, to a lesser degree, on house characteristics and homeowner responsibility. However, the extent to which land use planning could alleviate wildfire risk has been largely missing from the debate despite large numbers of homes being placed in the most hazardous parts of the landscape. Our goal was to examine how housing location and arrangement affects the likelihood that a home will be lost when a wildfire occurs. We developed an extensive geographic dataset of structure locations, including more than 5500 structures that were destroyed or damaged by wildfire since 2001, and identified the main contributors to property loss in two extensive, fire-prone regions in southern California. The arrangement and location of structures strongly affected their susceptibility to wildfire, with property loss most likely at low to intermediate structure densities and in areas with a history of frequent fire. Rates of structure loss were higher when structures were surrounded by wildland vegetation, but were generally higher in herbaceous fuel types than in higher fuel-volume woody types. Empirically based maps developed using housing pattern and location performed better in distinguishing hazardous from non-hazardous areas than maps based on fuel distribution. The strong importance of housing arrangement and location indicate that land use planning may be a critical tool for reducing fire risk, but it will require reliable delineations of the most hazardous locations.

  9. Housing Arrangement and Location Determine the Likelihood of Housing Loss Due to Wildfire

    PubMed Central

    Syphard, Alexandra D.; Keeley, Jon E.; Massada, Avi Bar; Brennan, Teresa J.; Radeloff, Volker C.

    2012-01-01

    Surging wildfires across the globe are contributing to escalating residential losses and have major social, economic, and ecological consequences. The highest losses in the U.S. occur in southern California, where nearly 1000 homes per year have been destroyed by wildfires since 2000. Wildfire risk reduction efforts focus primarily on fuel reduction and, to a lesser degree, on house characteristics and homeowner responsibility. However, the extent to which land use planning could alleviate wildfire risk has been largely missing from the debate despite large numbers of homes being placed in the most hazardous parts of the landscape. Our goal was to examine how housing location and arrangement affects the likelihood that a home will be lost when a wildfire occurs. We developed an extensive geographic dataset of structure locations, including more than 5500 structures that were destroyed or damaged by wildfire since 2001, and identified the main contributors to property loss in two extensive, fire-prone regions in southern California. The arrangement and location of structures strongly affected their susceptibility to wildfire, with property loss most likely at low to intermediate structure densities and in areas with a history of frequent fire. Rates of structure loss were higher when structures were surrounded by wildland vegetation, but were generally higher in herbaceous fuel types than in higher fuel-volume woody types. Empirically based maps developed using housing pattern and location performed better in distinguishing hazardous from non-hazardous areas than maps based on fuel distribution. The strong importance of housing arrangement and location indicate that land use planning may be a critical tool for reducing fire risk, but it will require reliable delineations of the most hazardous locations. PMID:22470499

  10. Burn me twice, shame on who? Interactions between successive forest fires across a temperate mountain region.

    PubMed

    Harvey, Brian J; Donato, Daniel C; Turner, Monica G

    2016-09-01

    Increasing rates of natural disturbances under a warming climate raise important questions about how multiple disturbances interact. Escalating wildfire activity in recent decades has resulted in some forests re-burning in short succession, but how the severity of one wildfire affects that of a subsequent wildfire is not fully understood. We used a field-validated, satellite-derived, burn-severity atlas to assess interactions between successive wildfires across the US Northern Rocky Mountains a 300,000-km(2) region dominated by fire-prone forests. In areas that experienced two wildfires between 1984 and 2010, we asked: (1) How do overall frequency distributions of burn-severity classes compare between first and second fires? (2) In a given location, how does burn severity of the second fire relate to that of the first? (3) Do interactions between successive fires vary by forest zone or the interval between fires? (4) What factors increase the probability of burning twice as stand-replacing fire? Within the study area, 138,061 ha burned twice between 1984 and 2010. Overall, frequency distributions of burn severity classes (low, moderate, high; quantified using relativized remote sensing indices) were similar between the first and second fires; however burn severity was 5-13% lower in second fires on average. Negative interactions between fires were most pronounced in lower-elevation forests and woodlands, when fire intervals were <10 yr, and when burn severity was low in the first fire. When the first fire burned as high severity and fire intervals exceeded 10-12 yr, burn-severity interactions switched from negative to positive, with high-severity fire begetting subsequent high-severity fire. Locations most likely to experience successive stand-replacing fires were high-elevation forests, which are adapted to high-severity fire, and areas conducive to abundant post-fire tree regeneration. Broadly similar severities among short-interval "re-burns" and other

  11. Big Sagebrush Seed Bank Densities Following Wildfires

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Big sagebrush (Artemisia sp.) is a critical shrub to such sagebrush obligate species as sage grouse, (Centocercus urophasianus), mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), and pygmy rabbit (Brachylagus idahoensis). Big sagebrush do not sprout after wildfires wildfires and big sagebrush seed is generally sho...

  12. Synoptic backgrounds of the widest wildfire in Mazandaran Province of Iran during December 11-13, 2010

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghavidel, Yousef; Farajzadeh, Manuchehr; Khaleghi Babaei, Meysam

    2016-12-01

    In this paper, atmospheric origins of the widest wildfire in Mazandaran province on 11-13th of December, 2010 have been investigated. Data sets of this research include maximum daily temperature (MDT), minimum relative humidity (MRH) of terrestrial stations, dynamic and thermodynamic features of the atmosphere, Gridded data sets of Self-Calibrated Palmer drought severity index (SCPDSI) and global drought dataset standardized precipitation-evapotranspiration index (SPEI) and data related to the time and the extent of the wildfire. The ``environmental to circulation'' approach to synoptic classification has been used to investigate relationships between local-scale surface environment (wildfire) and the synoptic-scale atmospheric circulation conditions. Results of study show that during the 3-day wide wildfire, the average of MDT and the MRH was significantly different from the long-term average. During the aforementioned wildfire, the average of MDT in Mazandaran province was 26 °C and the average of MRH was reported 35 %. The long-term average of MDT and the MRH in Mazandaran province during 3 days of wildfire was 12.3 °C and 68 %, respectively. Therefore, the MDT has a positive abnormality of 13.7 °C and the MRH has a negative abnormality of 33 %. In addition, monthly SCPDSI and SPEI indicated severe drought conditions at December 2010 in Mazandaran. Analysis of SLP maps shows that during the 3-day fire, a pressure center of 1110 hPa on Persian Gulf and a very low-pressure center on Turkey and Asia Minor were created. Normally, this event has caused the pressure gradient and warm and dry air advection from Arabian Peninsula to higher longitudes, particularly Mazandaran province. Consequently, the MDT increased and the wildfire of Mazandaran forest took place in an area of 220 ha. Zonal wind maps signify the weakness of Zonal wind and meridional wind maps show the southern direction of meridional wind flow during the wide wildfire. Moreover, Omega maps prove

  13. Emissions of Black Carbon Aerosols from Alaskan Boreal Forest Wildfires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mouteva, G.; Fahrni, S. M.; Rogers, B. M.; Wiggins, E. B.; Santos, G.; Czimczik, C. I.; Randerson, J. T.

    2014-12-01

    Boreal wildfires are a major source of carbonaceous aerosols. Emissions from wildfires in Alaska represent ~ 33% of all open biomass combustion emissions of black carbon (BC) in the United States. BC contributes to atmospheric warming and accelerates melting of ice and snow. With fire frequency and burned area projected to increase in boreal regions, BC has the potential to become an important positive feedback to climate change. Quantifying the emissions, constraining the sources and better understanding the transportation patterns of BC to the polar regions are therefore critical for constraining the strength of this feedback. We present results from direct measurements of BC from wildfires in Alaska during the summer of 2013 collected as a part of NASA's Carbon in Arctic Reservoirs Vulnerability Experiment (CARVE) campaign. Fine aerosol particulate matter (PM2.5) was collected at two locations: Caribou-Poker Creek Research Watershed and Delta Junction Agricultural and Forestry Experimental Site. Using a Sunset OCEC analyzer, we separated BC from organic carbon aerosols, measured concentrations and analyzed the radiocarbon (14C) content with accelerator mass spectrometry. We also analyzed the total carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) elemental and stable isotope composition of the bulk PM2.5 with EA-IRMS. We compared the temporal dynamics of BC concentrations and isotopic composition with active fire/thermal anomaly information from MODIS. Our results show that boreal forest fire emissions in interior Alaska increased BC concentrations by up to an order of magnitude above background levels. The mean Δ14C value of fire-emitted BC was 120‰ with a range of +99‰ to +149‰ after correcting for contributions from background BC. This range was in good agreement with measurements of the depth of burn in soil organic carbon layers from interior wildland fires, and Δ14C profiles. High fire periods also corresponded to elevated C:N ratios. The δ15N of the aerosols was

  14. Wildfire effects on soil nutrients and leaching in a tahoe basin watershed.

    PubMed

    Murphy, J D; Johnson, D W; Miller, W W; Walker, R F; Carroll, E F; Blank, R R

    2006-01-01

    A wildfire burned through a previously sampled research site, allowing pre- and post-burn measurements of the forest floor, soils, and soil leaching near Lake Tahoe, Nevada. Fire and post-fire erosion caused large and statistically significant (P < or = 0.05) losses of C, N, P, S, Ca, and Mg from the forest floor. There were no statistically significant effects on mineral soils aside from a decrease in total N in the surface (A11) horizon, an increase in pH in the A11 horizon, and increases in water-extractable SO4(2-) in the A11 and A12 horizons. Burning caused consistent but nonsignificant increases in exchangeable Ca2+ in most horizons, but no consistent or statistically significant effects on exchangeable K+ or Mg2+, or on Bray-, bicarbonate-, or water-extractable P concentrations. Before the burn, there were no significant differences in leaching, but during the first winter after the fire, soil solution concentrations of NH4+, NO3-, ortho-P, and (especially) SO4(2-) were elevated in the burned area, and resin lysimeters showed significant increases in the leaching of NH4+ and mineral N. The leaching losses of mineral N were much smaller than the losses from the forest floor and A11 horizons, however. We conclude that the major short-term effects of wildfire were on leaching whereas the major long-term effect was the loss of N from the forest floor and soil during the fire.

  15. VOC emissions of smouldering combustion from Mediterranean wildfires in central Portugal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Evtyugina, Margarita; Calvo, Ana Isabel; Nunes, Teresa; Alves, Célia; Fernandes, Ana Patrícia; Tarelho, Luís; Vicente, Ana; Pio, Casimiro

    2013-01-01

    Emissions of trace gases and C5-C10 volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from Mediterranean wildfires occurring in Portugal in summer 2010 were studied. Fire smoke was collected in Tedlar bags and analysed for CO, CO2, total hydrocarbons (THC) and VOCs. The CO, CO2 and THC emission factors (EFs) were 206 ± 79, 1377 ± 142 and 8.1 ± 9 g kg-1 biomass burned (dry basis), respectively. VOC emissions from Mediterranean wildfires were reported for the first time. Aromatic hydrocarbons were major components of the identified VOC emissions. Among them, benzene and toluene were dominant compounds with EFs averaging 0.747 ± 0.303 and 0.567 ± 0.422 g kg-1 biomass burned (dry basis), respectively. Considerable amounts of oxygenated organic volatile compounds (OVOCs) and isoprenoids were detected. 2-Furaldehyde and hexanal were the most abundant measured OVOCs with EFs of 0.337 ± 0.259 and 0.088 ± 0.039 g kg-1 biomass burned (dry basis), respectively. The isoprenoid emissions were dominated by isoprene (EF = 0.207 ± 0.195 g kg-1 dry biomass burned) and α-pinene (EF = 0.112 ± 0.093 g kg-1 dry biomass burned). Emission data obtained in this work are useful for validating and improving emission inventories, as well for carrying out modelling studies to assess the effects of vegetation fires on air pollution and tropospheric chemistry.

  16. Wildfire Disturbance and Sediment Transfers over Millennial Time Scales: A Numerical Modelling Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, Y.

    2003-12-01

    Wildfire may lead to accelerated soil erosion, debris flow and shallow landsliding activity in the years following disturbance. This study focuses on coastal drainage basins in British Columbia over millennial time scales, for which accelerated rates of shallow landsliding following wildfire may be of particular significance. An algorithm for wildfire occurrence, based on lake and sediment charcoal studies undertaken in coastal British Columbia and western Washington over millennial time scales (for example, Gavin et al., 2003), is incorporated into a numerical model of sediment routing over these same time scales. A stochastic rule set for wildfire frequency, based on a Weibull distribution of fire return intervals, assigns years of fire occurrence in the model. In terms of location, south-facing aspects are assigned a 25 times greater susceptibility to wildfire than north-facing aspects. As a first-order approximation, it is supposed that loss of tree root strength resulting from stand-replacing wildfires is comparable in its effects to clearcut logging. Therefore, documentation of increased shallow landslide activity associated with logging is used to adjust landsliding transport equations for the years following wildfire disturbance. Thereafter, landsliding rates are returned to pre-disturbance values. Fire return intervals, particularly those on north-facing aspects, can be relatively long in coastal British Columbia when compared to return intervals typically found in drier mountain ranges. This study investigates the degree to which wildfire disturbance affects sediment routing and delivery to channels over millennial time scales in coastal British Columbia. Sensitivity to model parameters is evaluated. Further investigations of wildfire effects on geomorphic process operation will lead to improved understanding of natural disturbance regimes to which ecosystems adjust over both the short and long term. Such information can be used to evaluate possible

  17. Multivariate statistical analysis of wildfires in Portugal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Costa, Ricardo; Caramelo, Liliana; Pereira, Mário

    2013-04-01

    Several studies demonstrate that wildfires in Portugal present high temporal and spatial variability as well as cluster behavior (Pereira et al., 2005, 2011). This study aims to contribute to the characterization of the fire regime in Portugal with the multivariate statistical analysis of the time series of number of fires and area burned in Portugal during the 1980 - 2009 period. The data used in the analysis is an extended version of the Rural Fire Portuguese Database (PRFD) (Pereira et al, 2011), provided by the National Forest Authority (Autoridade Florestal Nacional, AFN), the Portuguese Forest Service, which includes information for more than 500,000 fire records. There are many multiple advanced techniques for examining the relationships among multiple time series at the same time (e.g., canonical correlation analysis, principal components analysis, factor analysis, path analysis, multiple analyses of variance, clustering systems). This study compares and discusses the results obtained with these different techniques. Pereira, M.G., Trigo, R.M., DaCamara, C.C., Pereira, J.M.C., Leite, S.M., 2005: "Synoptic patterns associated with large summer forest fires in Portugal". Agricultural and Forest Meteorology. 129, 11-25. Pereira, M. G., Malamud, B. D., Trigo, R. M., and Alves, P. I.: The history and characteristics of the 1980-2005 Portuguese rural fire database, Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 11, 3343-3358, doi:10.5194/nhess-11-3343-2011, 2011 This work is supported by European Union Funds (FEDER/COMPETE - Operational Competitiveness Programme) and by national funds (FCT - Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology) under the project FCOMP-01-0124-FEDER-022692, the project FLAIR (PTDC/AAC-AMB/104702/2008) and the EU 7th Framework Program through FUME (contract number 243888).

  18. Effects of Metals Associated with Wildfire Ash on Water Quality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cerrato, J.; Clark, A.; Correa, N.; Ali, A.; Blake, J.; Bixby, R.

    2015-12-01

    The forests of the western United States are impacted dramatically by climate change and have suffered from large-scale increases in wildfire activity. This rise in wildfires introduces additional ash to ecosystems and can represent a serious and ongoing threat to water quality in streams and rivers from storm event runoff in burn areas. The effect of metals associated with wildfire ash (from wood collected from the Valles Caldera National Preserve, Jemez Mountains, New Mexico) on solution pH and dissolved oxygen was assessed through a series of laboratory experiments. Microscopy and spectroscopy analyses were conducted to characterize the elemental content and oxidation state of metals in unreacted and reacted ash. Certain metals (e.g., Ca, K, Al, Mg) were detected in ash from ponderosa pine, one of the dominant species in the Valles Caldera, with mean concentrations ranging from 400-1750 mg kg-1. Other metals (e.g., Na, Fe, Mn, V, Zn, Ni) were present at lower mean concentrations ranging from 12-210 mg kg-1. The initial pH after conducting batch experiments reacting ash with water started at 9.9 and the alkalinity of the water was 110 mg L-1 as CaCO3. Solution pH decreased to 8.0 after 48 hours of reaction, which is almost a delta of two pH units. Dissolved oxygen concentrations decreased by 2 mg L-1 over the course of 12 hours before the rate of reaeration surpassed the rate of consumption. This presentation will discuss how redox-active metals, such as Fe and Mn, could contribute to the increased dissolved oxygen demand and fluctuation of the oxidation/reduction potential in the system.

  19. The key host for an invasive forest pathogen also facilitates the pathogen's survival of wildfire in California forests.

    PubMed

    Beh, Maia M; Metz, Margaret R; Frangioso, Kerri M; Rizzo, David M

    2012-12-01

    The first wildfires in sudden oak death-impacted forests occurred in 2008 in the Big Sur region of California, creating the rare opportunity to study the interaction between an invasive forest pathogen and a historically recurring disturbance. To determine whether and how the sudden oak death pathogen, Phytophthora ramorum, survived the wildfires, we completed intensive vegetation-based surveys in forest plots that were known to be infested before the wildfires. We then used 24 plot-based variables as predictors of P. ramorum recovery following the wildfires. The likelihood of recovering P. ramorum from burned plots was lower than in unburned plots both 1 and 2 yr following the fires. Post-fire recovery of P. ramorum in burned plots was positively correlated with the number of pre-fire symptomatic California bay laurel (Umbellularia californica), the key sporulating host for this pathogen, and negatively correlated with post-fire bay laurel mortality levels. Patchy burn patterns that left green, P. ramorum-infected bay laurel amidst the charred landscape may have allowed these trees to serve as inoculum reservoirs that could lead to the infection of newly sprouting vegetation, further highlighting the importance of bay laurel in the sudden oak death disease cycle.

  20. Changes in Carbon Pools Influenced by Changes in Physiography a Decade Following Wildfire in Black Spruce Forests of Interior Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Houle, G. P.; Kane, E. S.; Turetsky, M. R.; Kasischke, E. S.

    2015-12-01

    Topography and parent material (PM) texture control site drainage owing to changes in water holding capacity, infiltration, and insolation. In turn, these factors also affect fire regime. However, the interactive effects of site physiography, edaphic controls, and wildfire severity on ecosystem carbon accrual after wildfire are poorly understood. Throughout the summer of 2004 an area the size of Massachusetts burned in interior Alaska, and several studies were initiated to investigate the controls on organic layer consumption. In this study we resampled organic layer depths, below ground carbon stocks, and site revegetation from 38 burned black spruce sites from the 2004 wildfires. We collected ten year post-fire measurements of soil and woody-debris pools with the goal of understanding effects of landscape position, site physiography (topography/aspect and parent material soil texture), and fire severity (burn depth) on changes in carbon accumulation following wildfire. We also measured seedling recruitment to ascertain changes in post-fire succession and how this might affect trajectories of ecosystem carbon storage in the future.

  1. Comparison of Piedmont Clay Complexity and Carbon and Nitrogen Release at Various Temperature Intensities through Simulated Wildfires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, T.; Werts, S. P.

    2014-12-01

    Past research indicates that clay chemistry of soil can be altered below ground following a wildfire. Higher intensity burns can alter the pre-existing clay types and transform it into another. By contemplating the composition of a soil before a wildfire starts, it is possible to determine the outcomes and negative impacts of the burned soil at various temperatures, including possible emissions of carbon and nitrogen. Through evaluating different soil samples using the Rigaku Miniflex 600 XRD powder x-ray diffractometer, the clay composition of each sample was determined to be either in the kaolinite grouping, which is a less complex structure, or in the smectite, mica, or vermiculite groupings, which are more complex structures. After examination of field data using the Costech Elemental Combustion System for elemental analysis, a trend was found that as clay complexity increases in the individual horizons, the release of carbon and nitrogen from the soil also increases versus the other less complex horizons. It can be suggested that areas holding more complex clay mineral structures have the capacity to release more carbon and nitrogen into the atmosphere when burned at higher temperatures and intensities. Using this information, it is possible to indicate those areas holding more complex clay minerals and put further protection or emphasis on ensuring their exposure to wildfire is lessened. In turn, this will reduce the amount of harmful greenhouse gases released into the surrounding environment in the event of future uncontrolled wildfires.

  2. Magnetic susceptibility mapping of fly ash in soil samples near a coal-burning power plant in Pointe Coupee Parish, Louisiana.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elhelou, O.; Richter, C.

    2015-12-01

    Atmospheric deposition of pollutants is a major health and environmental concern. In a 2010 study, the CATF attributed over 13,000 deaths each year to fly ash and other fine particles emitted by U.S. coal-burning power plants. The magnetic properties of fly ash allows for mapping an area suspect of PM pollution faster and more efficiently than by conducting chemical analysis as the former alternative. The objective of this study is to detect the presence of magnetic particles related to the migration of fly ash from a nearby coal power plant over parts of Pointe Coupee Parish, LA. This is based on the idea that the fly ash that is released into the atmosphere during the coal burning process contains heavy metals and magnetic particles in the form of ferrospheres, which can be used to trace back to the source. Maps of the top and sub soil were generated to differentiate the magnetic susceptibility values of the heavy metals potentially attributed to the migration and settling of fly ash onto the surface from any pre-existing or naturally occurring heavy metals in the sub soil. A 60 km2 area in Pointe Coupee Parish was investigated in approximately 0.5 km2 subsets. The area in Pointe Coupee Parish, LA was selected because land use is predominantly rural with the Big Cajun II power plant as the main contributor for air borne contaminants. Samples of fly ash obtained directly from the source below one of the power plant's precipitators were also analyzed to verify the field and laboratory analysis. Contour maps representing the spatial distribution of fly ash over Pointe Coupee, LA, along with histograms of magnetic susceptibility values, and chemical analysis all indicate a correlation between the proximity to the power plant and the predominant wind direction. Acquisition curves of the isothermal remnant magnetization demonstrate the presence of predominantly low coercivity minerals (magnetite) with a small amount of a high-coercivity phase. The microstructure of the

  3. 43 CFR 4190.1 - Effect of wildfire management decisions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 43 Public Lands: Interior 2 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Effect of wildfire management decisions... ALASKA Effect of Wildfire Management Decisions § 4190.1 Effect of wildfire management decisions. (a... on the public lands are at substantial risk of wildfire due to drought, fuels buildup, or...

  4. 43 CFR 4190.1 - Effect of wildfire management decisions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 43 Public Lands: Interior 2 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Effect of wildfire management decisions... ALASKA Effect of Wildfire Management Decisions § 4190.1 Effect of wildfire management decisions. (a... on the public lands are at substantial risk of wildfire due to drought, fuels buildup, or...

  5. 43 CFR 4190.1 - Effect of wildfire management decisions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 43 Public Lands: Interior 2 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Effect of wildfire management decisions... ALASKA Effect of Wildfire Management Decisions § 4190.1 Effect of wildfire management decisions. (a... on the public lands are at substantial risk of wildfire due to drought, fuels buildup, or...

  6. 43 CFR 4190.1 - Effect of wildfire management decisions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 43 Public Lands: Interior 2 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Effect of wildfire management decisions... ALASKA Effect of Wildfire Management Decisions § 4190.1 Effect of wildfire management decisions. (a... on the public lands are at substantial risk of wildfire due to drought, fuels buildup, or...

  7. Integrated wildfire risk assessment: framework development and application on the Lewis and Clark National Forest in Montana, USA.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Matthew P; Scott, Joe; Helmbrecht, Don; Calkin, Dave E

    2013-04-01

    The financial, socioeconomic, and ecological impacts of wildfire continue to challenge federal land management agencies in the United States. In recent years, policymakers and managers have increasingly turned to the field of risk analysis to better manage wildfires and to mitigate losses to highly valued resources and assets (HVRAs). Assessing wildfire risk entails the interaction of multiple components, including integrating wildfire simulation outputs with geospatial identification of HVRAs and the characterization of fire effects to HVRAs. We present an integrated and systematic risk assessment framework that entails 3 primary analytical components: 1) stochastic wildfire simulation and burn probability modeling to characterize wildfire hazard, 2) expert-based modeling to characterize fire effects, and 3) multicriteria decision analysis to characterize preference structures across at-risk HVRAs. We demonstrate application of this framework for a wildfire risk assessment performed on the Little Belts Assessment Area within the Lewis and Clark National Forest in Montana, United States. We devote particular attention to our approach to eliciting and encapsulating expert judgment, in which we: 1) adhered to a structured process for using expert judgment in ecological risk assessment, 2) used as our expert base local resource scientists and fire/fuels specialists who have a direct connection to the specific landscape and HVRAs in question, and 3) introduced multivariate response functions to characterize fire effects to HVRAs that consider biophysical variables beyond fire behavior. We anticipate that this work will further the state of wildfire risk science and will lead to additional application of risk assessment to inform land management planning.

  8. Airborne Measurements and Emission Estimates of Greenhouse Gases and Other Trace Constituents From the 2013 California Yosemite Rim Wildfire

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yates, E. L.; Iraci, L. T.; Singh, H. B.; Tanaka, T.; Roby, M. C.; Hamill, P.; Clements, C. B.; Lareau, N.; Contezac, J.; Blake, D. R.; Simpson, I. J.; Wisthaler, A.; Mikoviny, T.; Diskin, G. S.; Beyersdorf, A. J.; Choi, Y.; Ryerson, T. B.; Jimenez, J. L.; Campuzano-Jost, P.; Loewenstein, M.; Gore, W.

    2015-01-01

    This paper presents airborne measurements of multiple atmospheric trace constituents including greenhouse gases (such as CO2, CH4, O3) and biomass burning tracers (such as CO, CH3CN) downwind of an exceptionally large wildfire. In summer 2013, the Rim wildfire, ignited just west of the Yosemite National Park, California, and burned over 250,000 acres of the forest during the 2-month period (17 August to 24 October) before it was extinguished. The Rim wildfire plume was intercepted by flights carried out by the NASA Ames Alpha Jet Atmospheric eXperiment (AJAX) on 29 August and the NASA DC-8, as part of SEAC4RS (Studies of Emissions, Atmospheric Composition, Clouds and Climate Coupling by Regional Surveys), on 26 and 27 August during its intense, primary burning period. AJAX revisited the wildfire on 10 September when the conditions were increasingly smoldering, with slower growth. The more extensive payload of the DC-8 helped to bridge key measurements that were not available as part of AJAX (e. g. CO). Data analyses are presented in terms of emission ratios (ER), emission factors (EF) and combustion efficiency and are compared with previous wildfire studies. ERs were 8.0 ppb CH4/(ppm CO2) on 26 August, 6.5 ppb CH4 (ppm CO2)1 on 29 August and 18.3 ppb CH4 (ppm CO2)1 on 10 September 2013. The increase in CH4 ER from 6.5 to 8.0 ppb CH4/(ppm CO2) during the primary burning period to 18.3 ppb CH4/(ppm CO2) during the fire's slower growth period likely indicates enhanced CH4 emissions from increased smoldering combustion relative to flaming combustion. Given the magnitude of the Rim wildfire, the impacts it had on regional air quality and the limited sampling of wildfire emissions in the western United States to date, this study provides a valuable dataset to support forestry and regional air quality management, including observations of ERs of a wide number of species from the Rim wildfire.

  9. Airborne measurements and emission estimates of greenhouse gases and other trace constituents from the 2013 California Yosemite Rim wildfire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yates, E. L.; Iraci, L. T.; Singh, H. B.; Tanaka, T.; Roby, M. C.; Hamill, P.; Clements, C. B.; Lareau, N.; Contezac, J.; Blake, D. R.; Simpson, I. J.; Wisthaler, A.; Mikoviny, T.; Diskin, G. S.; Beyersdorf, A. J.; Choi, Y.; Ryerson, T. B.; Jimenez, J. L.; Campuzano-Jost, P.; Loewenstein, M.; Gore, W.

    2016-02-01

    This paper presents airborne measurements of multiple atmospheric trace constituents including greenhouse gases (such as CO2, CH4, O3) and biomass burning tracers (such as CO, CH3CN) downwind of an exceptionally large wildfire. In summer 2013, the Rim wildfire, ignited just west of the Yosemite National Park, California, and burned over 250,000 acres of the forest during the 2-month period (17 August to 24 October) before it was extinguished. The Rim wildfire plume was intercepted by flights carried out by the NASA Ames Alpha Jet Atmospheric eXperiment (AJAX) on 29 August and the NASA DC-8, as part of SEAC4RS (Studies of Emissions, Atmospheric Composition, Clouds and Climate Coupling by Regional Surveys), on 26 and 27 August during its intense, primary burning period. AJAX revisited the wildfire on 10 September when the conditions were increasingly smoldering, with slower growth. The more extensive payload of the DC-8 helped to bridge key measurements that were not available as part of AJAX (e. g. CO). Data analyses are presented in terms of emission ratios (ER), emission factors (EF) and combustion efficiency and are compared with previous wildfire studies. ERs were 8.0 ppb CH4 (ppm CO2)-1 on 26 August, 6.5 ppb CH4 (ppm CO2)-1 on 29 August and 18.3 ppb CH4 (ppm CO2)-1 on 10 September 2013. The increase in CH4 ER from 6.5 to 8.0 ppb CH4 (ppm CO2)-1 during the primary burning period to 18.3 ppb CH4 (ppm CO2)-1 during the fire's slower growth period likely indicates enhanced CH4 emissions from increased smoldering combustion relative to flaming combustion. Given the magnitude of the Rim wildfire, the impacts it had on regional air quality and the limited sampling of wildfire emissions in the western United States to date, this study provides a valuable dataset to support forestry and regional air quality management, including observations of ERs of a wide number of species from the Rim wildfire.

  10. Mathematical Modeling of Wildfire Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Del Bene, Kevin; Drew, Donald

    2012-11-01

    Wildfires have been a long-standing problem in today's society. In this paper, we derive and solve a fluid dynamics model to study a specific type of wildfire, namely, a two dimensional flow around a rising plume above a concentrated heat source, modeling a fire line. This flow assumes a narrow plume of hot gas rising and entraining the surrounding air. The surrounding air is assumed to have constant density and is irrotational far from the fire line. The flow outside the plume is described by a Biot-Savart integral with jump conditions across the position of the plume. The plume model describes the unsteady evolution of the mass, momentum, energy, and vorticity inside the plume, with sources derived to model mixing in the style of Morton, et al. 1956]. The fire is then modeled using a conservation derivation, allowing the fire to propagate, coupling back to the plume model. The results show that this model is capable of capturing the complex interaction of the plume with the surrounding air and fuel layer. Funded by NSF GRFP.

  11. Modeling wildfire impact on hydrologic processes using the Precipitation Runoff Modeling System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Logan, R. J.; Hogue, T. S.; Hay, L.

    2015-12-01

    As large magnitude wildfires persist across the western United States, understanding their impact on hydrologic behavior and predicting regional streamflow response is increasingly important. Sediment and debris flows, as well as elevated flood levels in burned watersheds are often addressed, but wildfires also alter the timing and overall volume of both short and long-term runoff, making the prediction of post-fire streamflow critical for water resources management. Watershed models are a powerful tool for both representing wildfire runoff response and discerning the processes that induce that response. In the current study, selected wildfire-impacted basins across the western United States are modeled using the Precipitation Runoff Modeling System (PRMS) in order to develop a generalized approach. This distributed-parameter, physical process based watershed model allows us to target specific processes, while still having the flexibility to account for uncertainty and complex physical interactions that are not explicitly represented in model parameterization. Two change detection modeling approaches are considered. First, models calibrated using pre-fire data are applied to the post-fire period and residuals between simulated and observed flow are examined to quantify the response in each specific watershed. Here an analysis of the model's ability to detect long-term response is also presented. Second, the post-fire conditions are modeled by adjusting appropriate parameters, and the parameter differences are used to guide process learning. In this latter method, parameters are specifically tailored to represent processes affected by wildfire, and scenarios with different parameter interactions are statistically compared. The results of these analyses are synthesized to provide a framework for predicting wildfire runoff response using PRMS, which will ultimately empower water resource decisions.

  12. Hydrologic effects of large southwestern USA wildfires significantly increase regional water supply: fact or fiction?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wine, M. L.; Cadol, D.

    2016-08-01

    In recent years climate change and historic fire suppression have increased the frequency of large wildfires in the southwestern USA, motivating study of the hydrological consequences of these wildfires at point and watershed scales, typically over short periods of time. These studies have revealed that reduced soil infiltration capacity and reduced transpiration due to tree canopy combustion increase streamflow at the watershed scale. However, the degree to which these local increases in runoff propagate to larger scales—relevant to urban and agricultural water supply—remains largely unknown, particularly in semi-arid mountainous watersheds co-dominated by winter snowmelt and the North American monsoon. To address this question, we selected three New Mexico watersheds—the Jemez (1223 km2), Mogollon (191 km2), and Gila (4807 km2)—that together have been affected by over 100 wildfires since 1982. We then applied climate-driven linear models to test for effects of fire on streamflow metrics after controlling for climatic variability. Here we show that, after controlling for climatic and snowpack variability, significantly more streamflow discharged from the Gila watershed for three to five years following wildfires, consistent with increased regional water yield due to enhanced infiltration-excess overland flow and groundwater recharge at the large watershed scale. In contrast, we observed no such increase in discharge from the Jemez watershed following wildfires. Fire regimes represent a key difference between the contrasting responses of the Jemez and Gila watersheds with the latter experiencing more frequent wildfires, many caused by lightning strikes. While hydrologic dynamics at the scale of large watersheds were previously thought to be climatically dominated, these results suggest that if one fifth or more of a large watershed has been burned in the previous three to five years, significant increases in water yield can be expected.

  13. Regional variation in fire weather controls the reported occurrence of Scottish wildfires.

    PubMed

    Davies, G Matt; Legg, Colin J

    2016-01-01

    Fire is widely used as a traditional habitat management tool in Scotland, but wildfires pose a significant and growing threat. The financial costs of fighting wildfires are significant and severe wildfires can have substantial environmental impacts. Due to the intermittent occurrence of severe fire seasons, Scotland, and the UK as a whole, remain somewhat unprepared. Scotland currently lacks any form of Fire Danger Rating system that could inform managers and the Fire and Rescue Services (FRS) of periods when there is a risk of increased of fire activity. We aimed evaluate the potential to use outputs from the Canadian Fire Weather Index system (FWI system) to forecast periods of increased fire risk and the potential for ignitions to turn into large wildfires. We collated four and a half years of wildfire data from the Scottish FRS and examined patterns in wildfire occurrence within different regions, seasons, between urban and rural locations and according to FWI system outputs. We used a variety of techniques, including Mahalanobis distances, percentile analysis and Thiel-Sen regression, to scope the best performing FWI system codes and indices. Logistic regression showed significant differences in fire activity between regions, seasons and between urban and rural locations. The Fine Fuel Moisture Code and the Initial Spread Index did a tolerable job of modelling the probability of fire occurrence but further research on fuel moisture dynamics may provide substantial improvements. Overall our results suggest it would be prudent to ready resources and avoid managed burning when FFMC > 75 and/or ISI > 2.

  14. Regional variation in fire weather controls the reported occurrence of Scottish wildfires

    PubMed Central

    Legg, Colin J.

    2016-01-01

    Fire is widely used as a traditional habitat management tool in Scotland, but wildfires pose a significant and growing threat. The financial costs of fighting wildfires are significant and severe wildfires can have substantial environmental impacts. Due to the intermittent occurrence of severe fire seasons, Scotland, and the UK as a whole, remain somewhat unprepared. Scotland currently lacks any form of Fire Danger Rating system that could inform managers and the Fire and Rescue Services (FRS) of periods when there is a risk of increased of fire activity. We aimed evaluate the potential to use outputs from the Canadian Fire Weather Index system (FWI system) to forecast periods of increased fire risk and the potential for ignitions to turn into large wildfires. We collated four and a half years of wildfire data from the Scottish FRS and examined patterns in wildfire occurrence within different regions, seasons, between urban and rural locations and according to FWI system outputs. We used a variety of techniques, including Mahalanobis distances, percentile analysis and Thiel-Sen regression, to scope the best performing FWI system codes and indices. Logistic regression showed significant differences in fire activity between regions, seasons and between urban and rural locations. The Fine Fuel Moisture Code and the Initial Spread Index did a tolerable job of modelling the probability of fire occurrence but further research on fuel moisture dynamics may provide substantial improvements. Overall our results suggest it would be prudent to ready resources and avoid managed burning when FFMC > 75 and/or ISI > 2. PMID:27833814

  15. Analyzing and Projecting U.S. Wildfire Potential Based on NARCCAP Regional Climate Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Y.; Mearns, L. O.

    2012-12-01

    Wildfires usually ignite and spread under hot, dry, and windy conditions. Wildfires, especially catastrophic mega-fires, have increased in recent decades in the United States and other parts of the world. Among the converging factors were extreme weather event such as extended drought. Furthermore, climate has been projected to become warmer worldwide and drier with more frequent droughts in many subtropical and mid-latitude regions including parts of the U.S. due to the greenhouse effect. As a result, wildfires are expected to increase in the future. This study analyzes current features and project future trends of wildfire potential in the continental United States. Fire potential is measured by fire indices including the Keetch-Byram Drought Index and Fosberg Fire Weather Index. The meteorological data used to calculate the fire indices are the dynamical downscaling produced by the North American Regional Climate Change Assessment Program (NARCCAP). Current fire potential generally increases from the eastern to western coast and from cool to warm season. Fire potential has large seasonal and inter-annual variability and spatial connections. Fire potential has shown overall increasing trends in recent decades. The trends are projected to continue this century due to the greenhouse effect. Future fire potential will increase significantly in the Rocky Mountains all seasons and in the Southeast during summer and autumn. Future climate change will also reduce the windows of prescribed burning, which is one of the forest management tools for reducing wildfire risks. The research results are expected to provide useful information for assessing the ecological, environmental, and social impacts of future wildfires and developing mitigation strategies.

  16. A critical assessment of the Burning Index in Los Angeles County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schoenberg, F.P.; Chang, H.-C.; Keeley, J.E.; Pompa, J.; Woods, J.; Xu, H.

    2007-01-01

    The Burning Index (BI) is commonly used as a predictor of wildfire activity. An examination of data on the BI and wildfires in Los Angeles County, California, from January 1976 to December 2000 reveals that although the BI is positively associated with wildfire occurrence, its predictive value is quite limited. Wind speed alone has a higher correlation with burn area than BI, for instance, and a simple alternative point process model using wind speed, relative humidity, precipitation and temperature well outperforms the BI in terms of predictive power. The BI is generally far too high in winter and too low in fall, and may exaggerate the impact of individual variables such as wind speed or temperature during times when other variables, such as precipitation or relative humidity, render the environment ill suited for wildfires. ?? IAWF 2007.

  17. Synthesis of soil-hydraulic properties and infiltration timescales in wildfire-affected soils

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ebel, Brian A.; Moody, John A.

    2017-01-01

    We collected soil-hydraulic property data from the literature for wildfire-affected soils, ash, and unburned soils. These data were used to calculate metrics and timescales of hydrologic response related to infiltration and surface runoff generation. Sorptivity (S) and wetting front potential (Ψf) were significantly different (lower) in burned soils compared with unburned soils, whereas field-saturated hydraulic conductivity (Kfs) was not significantly different. The magnitude and duration of the influence of capillarity during infiltration was greatly reduced in burned soils, causing faster ponding times in response to rainfall. Ash had large values of S and Kfs but moderate values of Ψf, compared with unburned and burned soils, indicating ash has long ponding times in response to rainfall. The ratio of S2/Kfs was nearly constant (~100 mm) for unburned soils but more variable in burned soils, suggesting that unburned soils have a balance between gravity and capillarity contributions to infiltration that may depend on soil organic matter, whereas in burned soils the gravity contribution to infiltration is greater. Changes in S and Kfs in burned soils act synergistically to reduce infiltration and accelerate and amplify surface runoff generation. Synthesis of these findings identifies three key areas for future research. First, short timescales of capillary influences on infiltration indicate the need for better measurements of infiltration at times less than 1 min to accurately characterize S in burned soils. Second, using parameter values, such as Ψf, from unburned areas could produce substantial errors in hydrologic modeling when used without adjustment for wildfire effects, causing parameter compensation and resulting underestimation of Kfs. Third, more thorough measurement campaigns that capture soil-structural changes, organic matter impacts, quantitative water repellency trends, and soil-water content along with soil-hydraulic properties could drive the

  18. A transport model for computer simulation of wildfires

    SciTech Connect

    Linn, R.

    1997-12-31

    Realistic self-determining simulation of wildfires is a difficult task because of a large variety of important length scales (including scales on the size of twigs or grass and the size of large trees), imperfect data, complex fluid mechanics and heat transfer, and very complicated chemical reactions. The author uses a transport approach to produce a model that exhibits a self-determining propagation rate. The transport approach allows him to represent a large number of environments such as those with nonhomogeneous vegetation and terrain. He accounts for the microscopic details of a fire with macroscopic resolution by dividing quantities into mean and fluctuating parts similar to what is done in traditional turbulence modeling. These divided quantities include fuel, wind, gas concentrations, and temperature. Reaction rates are limited by the mixing process and not the chemical kinetics. The author has developed a model that includes the transport of multiple gas species, such as oxygen and volatile hydrocarbons, and tracks the depletion of various fuels and other stationary solids and liquids. From this model he develops a simplified local burning model with which he performs a number of simulations that demonstrate that he is able to capture the important physics with the transport approach. With this simplified model he is able to pick up the essence of wildfire propagation, including such features as acceleration when transitioning to upsloping terrain, deceleration of fire fronts when they reach downslopes, and crowning in the presence of high winds.

  19. Burn sepsis and burn toxin

    PubMed Central

    Allgöwer, Martin; Städtler, Karl; Schoenenberger, Guido A

    1974-01-01

    The salient steps of a 20-year programme of research into the nature of burn disease are described. By burn disease we mean the late mortality and morbidity following burns. We have isolated a burn toxin which is derived from a thermal polymerization of cell membrane lipoproteins within the dermis and have studied its influence on the effects of sepsis. We have also used it in the development of active and passive immunization therapy of severe burns. ImagesFig. 2Fig. 5Fig. 6Fig. 7Fig. 8Fig. 9 PMID:4429330

  20. Long-term perspective on wildfires in the western USA.

    PubMed

    Marlon, Jennifer R; Bartlein, Patrick J; Gavin, Daniel G; Long, Colin J; Anderson, R Scott; Briles, Christy E; Brown, Kendrick J; Colombaroli, Daniele; Hallett, Douglas J; Power, Mitchell J; Scharf, Elizabeth A; Walsh, Megan K

    2012-02-28

    Understanding the causes and consequences of wildfires in forests of the western United States requires integrated information about fire, climate changes, and human activity on multiple temporal scales. We use sedimentary charcoal accumulation rates to construct long-term variations in fire during the past 3,000 y in the American West and compare this record to independent fire-history data from historical records and fire scars. There has been a slight decline in burning over the past 3,000 y, with the lowest levels attained during the 20th century and during the Little Ice Age (LIA, ca. 1400-1700 CE [Common Era]). Prominent peaks in forest fires occurred during the Medieval Climate Anomaly (ca. 950-1250 CE) and during the 1800s. Analysis of climate reconstructions beginning from 500 CE and population data show that temperature and drought predict changes in biomass burning up to the late 1800s CE. Since the late 1800s , human activities and the ecological effects of recent high fire activity caused a large, abrupt decline in burning similar to the LIA fire decline. Consequently, there is now a forest "fire deficit" in the western United States attributable to the combined effects of human activities, ecological, and climate changes. Large fires in the late 20th and 21st century fires have begun to address the fire deficit, but it is continuing to grow.

  1. The influences of wildfires and stratospheric-tropospheric exchange on ozone during seacions mission over St. Louis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilkins, Joseph L.

    The influence of wildfire biomass burning and stratospheric air mass transport on tropospheric ozone (O3) concentrations in St. Louis during the SEAC4RS and SEACIONS-2013 measurement campaigns has been investigated. The Lagrangian particle dispersion model FLEXPART-WRF analysis reveals that 55% of ozonesonde profiles during SEACIONS were effected by biomass burning. Comparing ozonesonde profiles with numerical simulations show that as biomass burning plumes age there is O3 production aloft. A new plume injection height technique was developed based on the Naval Research Laboratory's (NRL) detection algorithm for pyro-convection. The NRL method identified 29 pyro-cumulonimbus events that occurred during the summer of 2013, of which 13 (44%) impacted the SEACIONS study area, and 4 (14%) impacted the St. Louis area. In this study, we investigate wildfire plume injection heights using model simulations and the FLAMBE emissions inventory using 2 different algorithms. In the first case, wildfire emissions are injected at the surface and allowed to mix within the boundary layer simulated by the meteorological model. In the second case, the injection height of wildfire emissions is determined by a guided deep-convective pyroCb run using the NRL detection algorithm. Results show that simulations using surface emissions were able to represent the transport of carbon monoxide plumes from wildfires when the plumes remained below 5 km or occurred during large convective systems, but that the surface effects were over predicted. The pyroCb cases simulated the long-range transport of elevated plumes above 5 km 68% of the time. In addition analysis of potential vorticity suggests that stratospheric intrusions or tropopause folds affected 13 days (48%) when there were sonde launches and 27 days (44%) during the entire study period. The largest impact occurred on September 12, 2013 when ozone-rich air impacted the nocturnal boundary layer. By analyzing ozonesonde profiles with

  2. Wildfire and Salvage Logging Impacts on Stream Water Nitrogen in Southern Alberta's Rocky Mountains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bladon, K. D.; Silins, U.; Wagner, M. J.; Stone, M.; Emelko, M. B.; Mendoza, C. A.; Devito, K. J.; Boon, S.

    2008-12-01

    Increased size and frequency of wildfires in North America has been linked to changing climate over the past 2-3 decades, raising concerns over impacts of wildfire on downstream water quality. In 2003, the Lost Creek wildfire burned more than 21,000 ha in the highest water yielding area of the Rocky Mountain region of southwestern Alberta (Crowsnest Pass). The objective of this study was to examine initial effects of the fire and post-fire salvage logging on concentrations, yield, and total export of several nitrogen (N) species, and to explore initial recovery of these effects within the first four years after the fire. Streams draining burned and post-fire salvage logged watersheds produced much higher concentrations of total nitrogen (TN), total dissolved nitrogen (TDN), and nitrate (NO3-) compared to reference streams in the first two years following the fire (p < 0.001). This resulted in average nutrient yields that were considerably greater for TN (6-fold), TDN (6-fold), and NO3- (9-fold) in burned streams than in reference streams. Salvage logging produced generally similar effects on the concentrations and yields for most N species. The temporal trend for TN, TDN, and NO3- in stream water from burned watersheds was a rapid decline in mean watershed exports over the four seasons after the fire to levels similar to those of the reference watersheds. However, exports of TN were still elevated in the fourth post-fire year in watersheds impacted by the additional disturbance of salvage logging. The effects of the burn were most noticeable (i.e., produced the greatest N concentrations, yields, and exports) during or following higher discharge periods (snowmelt freshet and storm flows) (p < 0.001). Small differences were still evident during base-flow periods, emphasizing the importance of groundwater and subsurface contributions to the headwater streams in this study.

  3. Legacy effects of wildfire on stream thermal regimes and rainbow trout ecology: an integrated analysis of observation and individual-based models

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rosenberger, Amanda E.; Dunham, Jason B.; Neuswanger, Jason R.; Railsback, Steven F.

    2015-01-01

    Management of aquatic resources in fire-prone areas requires understanding of fish species’ responses to wildfire and of the intermediate- and long-term consequences of these disturbances. We examined Rainbow Trout populations in 9 headwater streams 10 y after a major wildfire: 3 with no history of severe wildfire in the watershed (unburned), 3 in severely burned watersheds (burned), and 3 in severely burned watersheds subjected to immediate events that scoured the stream channel and eliminated streamside vegetation (burned and reorganized). Results of a previous study of this system suggested the primary lasting effects of this wildfire history on headwater stream habitat were differences in canopy cover and solar radiation, which led to higher summer stream temperatures. Nevertheless, trout were present throughout streams in burned watersheds. Older age classes were least abundant in streams draining watersheds with a burned and reorganized history, and individuals >1 y old were most abundant in streams draining watersheds with an unburned history. Burned history corresponded with fast growth, low lipid content, and early maturity of Rainbow Trout. We used an individual-based model of Rainbow Trout growth and demographic patterns to determine if temperature interactions with bioenergetics and competition among individuals could lead to observed phenotypic and ecological differences among populations in the absence of other plausible mechanisms. Modeling suggested that moderate warming associated with wildfire and channel disturbance history leads to faster individual growth, which exacerbates competition for limited food, leading to decreases in population densities. The inferred mechanisms from this modeling exercise suggest the transferability of ecological patterns to a variety of temperature-warming scenarios.

  4. Cement Burns

    PubMed Central

    Alam, Munir; Moynagh, M.; Lawlor, C.

    2007-01-01

    Objective: Cement burns account for relatively few admissions to a burn unit; however, these burns deserve separate consideration because of special features of diagnosis and management. Cement burns, even though potentially disabling, have rarely been reported in literature. Methods: A retrospective review was performed of all patients admitted with cement burns injuries to the national burns unit at the St James's Hospital in Dublin, Ireland, over a 10-year period for the years 1996–2005. Results: A total of 46 patients with cement burns were admitted. The majority of patients were aged 16–74 years (mean age = 32 years). Eighty-seven percent of injuries occurred in an industrial and 13% in a domestic setting. The upper and lower extremities were involved in all the patients, and the mean total body surface area affected was 6.5%. The mean length of hospital stay was 21 days with a range of 1–40 days. Thirty-eight (82%) were surgically managed involving debridement and split-thickness skin graft (SSG) and four (9%) were conservatively managed. A further four did not have data available. Conclusion: Widespread inexperience in dealing with this group of cement burns patients and delays in referral to burns unit highlights the potential for greater levels of general awareness and knowledge in both prevention and treatment of these burns. As well, early debridement and split-thickness skin grafting at diagnosis constitutes the best means of reducing the high socioeconomic costs and allows for early return to work. PMID:18091981

  5. Chemical burns

    PubMed Central

    Cartotto, Robert C.; Peters, Walter J.; Neligan, Peter C.; Douglas, Leith G.; Beeston, Jeff

    1996-01-01

    Objectives To report a burn unit’s experience with chemical burns and to discuss the fundamental principles in managing chemical burns. Design A chart review. Setting A burn centre at a major university-affiliated hospital. Patients Twenty-four patients with chemical burns, representing 2.6% of all burn admissions over an 8-year period at the Ross Tilley Regional Adult Burn Centre. Seventy-five percent of the burn injuries were work-related accidents. Chemicals involved included hydrofluoric acid, sulfuric acid, black liquor, various lyes, potassium permanganate and phenol. Results Fourteen patients required excision and skin grafting. Complications were frequent and included ocular chemical contacts, wound infections, tendon exposures, toe amputation and systemic reactions from absorption of chemical. One patient died from a chemical scald burn to 98% of the body surface area. Conclusions The key principles in the management of chemical burns include removal of the chemical, copious irrigation, limited use of antidotes, correct estimation of the extent of injury, identification of systemic toxicity, treatment of ocular contacts and management of chemical inhalation injury. Individualized treatment is emphasized. PMID:8640619

  6. Differential recovery of water quality parameters eight years after severe wildfire and salvage logging in Alberta's southern Rocky Mountains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Silins, U.; Bladon, K. D.; Stone, M.; Emelko, M. B.; Collins, A.; Boon, S.; Williams, C.; Wagner, M. J.; Martens, A. M.; Anderson, A.

    2012-12-01

    Broad regions of western North America rely on water supplies that originate from forested regions of the Rocky Mountain cordillera where landuse pressures, and stresses including changing natural disturbance regimes associated with shifting climates has been impacting critical source water supplies from this region. Increases in magnitude and severity of wildfires along with impacts on downstream water supplies has been observed along the length of the North American Rocky Mountain chain, however, the longevity of these impacts (including impacts to important water quality parameters) remain highly uncertain because processes regulating recovery from such disturbances can span a range of timescales from a few years to decades depending on both the hydro-climatic regime, and which water quality parameters are important. Studies document such long-term changes are few. The Southern Rockies Watershed Project (SRWP) was established to document the magnitude and recovery from the severe 2003 Lost Creek wildfire in the Crowsnest Pass region of southwest Alberta, Canada. Hydrology, water quality (physical & chemical) have been studies in 9 instrumented catchments (4-14 km2) encompassing burned, burned and salvage logged, prescribed burned, and unburned (reference) conditions since late winter 2004. While most important water quality parameters were strongly elevated in burned and burned-salvage logged catchments after the fire, strongly differential rates of recovery were observed for contaminant concentration, export, and yield across a range of water quality parameters (2004-2011). For example, while various nitrogen (N) species (total nitrogen, dissolved nitrogen, NO3-, NH4+) showed 2-7 fold increases in concentration the first 1-2 years after the wildfire, N recovered back to baseline concentrations 4-5 years after the wildfire. In contrast, eight full years after the wildfire (2011), no recovery of sediment or phosphorus (P) production (soluble reactive, total

  7. Impact of wildfires on ozone exceptional events in the Western u.s.

    PubMed

    Jaffe, Daniel A; Wigder, Nicole; Downey, Nicole; Pfister, Gabriele; Boynard, Anne; Reid, Stephen B

    2013-10-01

    Wildfires generate substantial emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx) and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). As such, wildfires contribute to elevated ozone (O3) in the atmosphere. However, there is a large amount of variability in the emissions of O3 precursors and the amount of O3 produced between fires. There is also significant interannual variability as seen in median O3, organic carbon and satellite derived carbon monoxide mixing ratios in the western U.S. To better understand O3 produced from wildfires, we developed a statistical model that estimates the maximum daily 8 h average (MDA8) O3 as a function of several meteorological and temporal variables for three urban areas in the western U.S.: Salt Lake City, UT; Boise, ID; and Reno, NV. The model is developed using data from June-September 2000-2012. For these three locations, the statistical model can explain 60, 52, and 27% of the variability in daily MDA8. The Statistical Model Residual (SMR) can give information on additional sources of O3 that are not explained by the usual meteorological pattern. Several possible O3 sources can explain high SMR values on any given day. We examine several cases with high SMR that are due to wildfire influence. The first case considered is for Reno in June 2008 when the MDA8 reached 82 ppbv. The wildfire influence for this episode is supported by PM concentrations, the known location of wildfires at the time and simulations with the Weather and Research Forecasting Model with Chemistry (WRF-Chem) which indicates transport to Reno from large fires burning in California. The contribution to the MDA8 in Reno from the California wildfires is estimated to be 26 ppbv, based on the SMR, and 60 ppbv, based on WRF-Chem. The WRF-Chem model also indicates an important role for peroxyacetyl nitrate (PAN) in producing O3 during transport from the California wildfires. We hypothesize that enhancements in PAN due to wildfire emissions may lead to regional enhancements in O3 during high

  8. A structural equation model analysis of relationships among ENSO, seasonal descriptors and wildfires.

    PubMed

    Slocum, Matthew G; Orzell, Steve L

    2013-01-01

    Seasonality drives ecological processes through networks of forcings, and the resultant complexity requires creative approaches for modeling to be successful. Recently ecologists and climatologists have developed sophisticated methods for fully describing seasons. However, to date the relationships among the variables produced by these methods have not been analyzed as networks, but rather with simple univariate statistics. In this manuscript we used structural equation modeling (SEM) to analyze a proposed causal network describing seasonality of rainfall for a site in south-central Florida. We also described how this network was influenced by the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO), and how the network in turn affected the site's wildfire regime. Our models indicated that wet and dry seasons starting later in the year (or ending earlier) were shorter and had less rainfall. El Niño conditions increased dry season rainfall, and via this effect decreased the consistency of that season's drying trend. El Niño conditions also negatively influenced how consistent the moistening trend was during the wet season, but in this case the effect was direct and did not route through rainfall. In modeling wildfires, our models showed that area burned was indirectly influenced by ENSO via its effect on dry season rainfall. Area burned was also indirectly reduced when the wet season had consistent rainfall, as such wet seasons allowed fewer wildfires in subsequent fire seasons. Overall area burned at the study site was estimated with high accuracy (R (2) score = 0.63). In summary, we found that by using SEMs, we were able to clearly describe causal patterns involving seasonal climate, ENSO and wildfire. We propose that similar approaches could be effectively applied to other sites where seasonality exerts strong and complex forcings on ecological processes.

  9. Historical Land-Use Influences the Long-Term Stream Turbidity Response to a Wildfire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harrison, Evan T.; Dyer, Fiona; Wright, Daniel W.; Levings, Chris

    2014-02-01

    Wildfires commonly result in an increase in stream turbidity. However, the influence of pre-fire land-use practices on post-fire stream turbidity is not well understood. The Lower Cotter Catchment (LCC) in south-eastern Australia is part of the main water supply catchment for Canberra with land in the catchment historically managed for a mix of conservation (native eucalypt forest) and pine ( Pinus radiata) plantation. In January 2003, wildfires burned almost all of the native and pine forests in the LCC. A study was established in 2005 to determine stream post-fire turbidity recovery within the native and pine forest areas of the catchment. Turbidity data loggers were deployed in two creeks within burned native forest and burned pine forest areas to determine turbidity response to fire in these areas. As a part of the study, we also determined changes in bare soil in the native and pine forest areas since the fire. The results suggest that the time, it takes turbidity levels to decrease following wildfire, is dependent upon the preceding land-use. In the LCC, turbidity levels decreased more rapidly in areas previously with native vegetation compared to areas which were previously used for pine forestry. This is likely because of a higher percentage of bare soil areas for a longer period of time in the ex-pine forest estate and instream stores of fine sediment from catchment erosion during post-fire storm events. The results of our study show that the previous land-use may exert considerable control over on-going turbidity levels following a wildfire.

  10. A Structural Equation Model Analysis of Relationships among ENSO, Seasonal Descriptors and Wildfires

    PubMed Central

    Slocum, Matthew G.; Orzell, Steve L.

    2013-01-01

    Seasonality drives ecological processes through networks of forcings, and the resultant complexity requires creative approaches for modeling to be successful. Recently ecologists and climatologists have developed sophisticated methods for fully describing seasons. However, to date the relationships among the variables produced by these methods have not been analyzed as networks, but rather with simple univariate statistics. In this manuscript we used structural equation modeling (SEM) to analyze a proposed causal network describing seasonality of rainfall for a site in south-central Florida. We also described how this network was influenced by the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO), and how the network in turn affected the site’s wildfire regime. Our models indicated that wet and dry seasons starting later in the year (or ending earlier) were shorter and had less rainfall. El Niño conditions increased dry season rainfall, and via this effect decreased the consistency of that season’s drying trend. El Niño conditions also negatively influenced how consistent the moistening trend was during the wet season, but in this case the effect was direct and did not route through rainfall. In modeling wildfires, our models showed that area burned was indirectly influenced by ENSO via its effect on dry season rainfall. Area burned was also indirectly reduced when the wet season had consistent rainfall, as such wet seasons allowed fewer wildfires in subsequent fire seasons. Overall area burned at the study site was estimated with high accuracy (R2 score = 0.63). In summary, we found that by using SEMs, we were able to clearly describe causal patterns involving seasonal climate, ENSO and wildfire. We propose that similar approaches could be effectively applied to other sites where seasonality exerts strong and complex forcings on ecological processes. PMID:24086670

  11. An estimate of carbon emissions from 2004 wildfires across Alaskan Yukon River Basin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Tan, Z.; Tieszen, L.L.; Zhu, Z.; Liu, S.; Howard, S.M.

    2007-01-01

    Background: Wildfires are an increasingly important component of the forces that drive the global carbon (C) cycle and climate change as progressive warming is expected in boreal areas. This study estimated C emissions from the wildfires across the Alaskan Yukon River Basin in 2004. We spatially related the firescars to land cover types and defined the C fractions of aboveground biomass and the ground layer (referring to the top 15 cm organic soil layer only in this paper) consumed in association with land cover types, soil drainage classes, and the C stocks in the ground layer. Results: The fires led to a burned area of 26,500 km2 and resulted in the total C emission of 81.1 ?? 13.6 Tg (Tg, Teragram; 1 Tg = 1012g) or 3.1 ?? 0.7 kg C m-2 burned. Of the total C emission, about 73% and 27% could be attributed to the consumption of the ground layer and aboveground biomass, respectively. Conclusion: The predominant contribution of the ground layer to the total C emission implies the importance of ground fuel management to the control of wildfires and mitigation of C emissions. The magnitude of the total C emission depends on fire extent, while the C loss in kg C m-2 burned is affected strongly by the ground layer and soil drainage condition. The significant reduction in the ground layer by large fires may result in profound impacts on boreal ecosystem services with an increase in feedbacks between wildfires and climate change. ?? 2007 Tan et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

  12. An estimate of carbon emissions from 2004 wildfires across Alaskan Yukon River Basin

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Zhengxi; Tieszen, Larry L; Zhu, Zhiliang; Liu, Shuguang; Howard, Stephen M

    2007-01-01

    Background Wildfires are an increasingly important component of the forces that drive the global carbon (C) cycle and climate change as progressive warming is expected in boreal areas. This study estimated C emissions from the wildfires across the Alaskan Yukon River Basin in 2004. We spatially related the firescars to land cover types and defined the C fractions of aboveground biomass and the ground layer (referring to the top 15 cm organic soil layer only in this paper) consumed in association with land cover types, soil drainage classes, and the C stocks in the ground layer. Results The fires led to a burned area of 26,500 km2 and resulted in the total C emission of 81.1 ± 13.6 Tg (Tg, Teragram; 1 Tg = 1012 g) or 3.1 ± 0.7 kg C m-2 burned. Of the total C emission, about 73% and 27% could be attributed to the consumption of the ground layer and aboveground biomass, respectively. Conclusion The predominant contribution of the ground layer to the total C emission implies the importance of ground fuel management to the control of wildfires and mitigation of C emissions. The magnitude of the total C emission depends on fire extent, while the C loss in kg C m-2 burned is affected strongly by the ground layer and soil drainage condition. The significant reduction in the ground layer by large fires may result in profound impacts on boreal ecosystem services with an increase in feedbacks between wildfires and climate change. PMID:18093322

  13. Ozone production from wildfires: A critical review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jaffe, Daniel A.; Wigder, Nicole L.

    2012-05-01

    Tropospheric ozone (O3) negatively impacts human health and ecosystems, and is a greenhouse gas. Wildfires are a source of tropospheric O3, and studies show that wildfires are increasing in North America. In this study, we present a critical review of O3 production from wildfires focusing on three key topics: the influence of wildfire emissions on O3 production; the influence of photochemistry on wildfire O3 production; and regulatory issues associated with wildfire O3 production in the United States. Observations of ΔO3/ΔCO range from approximately -0.1 to 0.9, and are caused by the interplay of numerous factors including fire emissions, efficiency of combustion, chemical and photochemical reactions, aerosol effects on chemistry and radiation, and local and downwind meteorological patterns. Using average ΔO3/ΔCO ratios for major biomes, we estimate global wildfires produce approximately 170 Tg of O3 per year, which is 3.5% of all global tropospheric O3 production. Areas of uncertainty in wildfire O3 production include the net effect of aerosols on chemical and photochemical reactions within a fire plume, the impact of oxygenated volatile organic compounds and nitrous acid on O3 production, and the interplay of variables that lead to extreme ΔO3/ΔCO values. Because wildfire frequencies are likely increasing and have been shown to contribute to elevated O3 at air quality monitoring sites, it is important to better understand the emissions, photochemistry and impacts of these fires.

  14. Long Term Dynamic Stream Nitrate and Phosphate Changes Following Watershed Wildfires

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ambrosia, Vincent G.; Brass, James A.; Riggan, Philip J.; Ewing, Roy; Sebesta, Paul D.; Peterson, David L. (Technical Monitor)

    1994-01-01

    During and following the 1988 Yellowstone National Park wildfires, airborne remotely sensed data were collected in order to characterize various vegetative components, fire front movements and bum intensities. ER-2 derived Thematic Mapper Simulator (TMS) data were used in conjunction with water sampling and chemistry analysis to determine fire intensities in various watersheds and aquatic system condition changes. The airborne Daedalus multispectral TMS data allowed the characterization of various bum intensities in watersheds. Stream sampling was then conducted in those various burned watersheds to determine nitrate and phosphate concentration changes. Six stream watersheds were monitored for five years (1989-1993) during non-snow periods (May/June through September): Cache Creek (intensely burned), Blacktail Deer Creek (intensely burned), Snake River (moderately burned), Lamar River (mixed burning), Soda Butte Creek (lightly burned), and Amphitheatre Creek (unburned). One litre samples were collected from those streams with ISCO water samplers every 12 hours. The samples were removed every 14 days .(28 Samples), and water chemistry analysis was performed. Chemistry analysis indicated that nitrate and phosphate concentrations were elevated in moderately burned watersheds and significantly elevated in severely burned watersheds. The results during the five year study indicate that bum intensities regulate stream water nitrate and phosphate concentrations, and that remotely sensed data can be used effectively to predict watershed chemical changes which will affect aquatic conditions.

  15. Using the Cropland Data Layer to Develop Fire Fuels Maps for Fire Emissions Modeling in the Conterminous US

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCarty, J. L.; French, N. H.; Hamermesh, N.; Billmire, M.

    2011-12-01

    Spatial quantification of smoke emissions from biomass fires, including wildfire, prescribed fire, or cropland burning, requires information on the material burning. The type of biomass, also referred to as fuel, and the density of the biomass, known as fuel loading, are two factors considered when calculating the amount of biomass consumed and emissions released during a burn. For non-agricultural systems, fuel characteristics that influence fire conditions and emissions have been mapped across the US using the Fuel Characterization and Classification System (FCCS) developed at the US Forest Service's Pacific Northwest Research Station. FCCS information on fuel type and loading has been used in fire consumption and emissions models for several applications. We present new data on fuels for agricultural lands, including rangelands and croplands, not previously quantified within FCCS. These fuel descriptions are being integrated into the FCCS and mapped for the Conterminous US. We present a new set of maps of FCCS fuels for the Conterminous US that integrates croplands and other agricultural lands into the existing FCCS map. Cropland mapping is taken from the annual U.S. Department of Agriculture National Agricultural Statistics Service Cropland Data Layer. The annually updated FCCS map can be used to make spatially comprehensive estimates of fire emissions across the country for emissions inventories, pollution mapping, and carbon cycling studies.

  16. 10-year Field Measurement Program of Post-Wildfire Tree Root Decay, Kootenay National Park, British Columbia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, Y. E.; Johnson, E. A.; Kroeker, S.

    2013-12-01

    Tree population dynamics in subalpine forests of the Canadian Rockies are dominated by wildfire disturbance (Gallaway et al., 2009), with wildfire return intervals most often being shorter than the potential lifespan of trees. These crown wildfires kill all trees, resulting in a gradual decline of tree root strength in shallow soils in the immediate post-wildfire years. Tree root networks have been shown to provide mechanical reinforcement of shear strength in shallow soils (Schmidt et al., 2001; Roering et al., 2003). Therefore, decreases in tree root reinforcement in post-wildfire years may result in increased debris slide and debris flow activity during this time period (e.g., Benda and Dunne, 1997; Martin, 2007; Jackson and Roering, 2009). To our knowledge, our study is the first that has measured tree root strength annually for 10 years following a crown wildfire to document the nature and timing of tree root decay. Suggestions have been made that studies documenting the decay of tree roots following timber harvesting provide a reasonable analogue for post-wildfire tree root decay; drainage basin modeling studies considering hillslope erosion resulting from episodic wildfires have had to rely on this assumption (e.g., Benda and Dunne, 1997; Martin, 2007). Herein, we present our annual field measurements of post-wildfire tree root strength made over the past 10 years at a post-wildfire site in Kootenay National Park, Canadian Rockies. The episodic nature of crown wildfire occurrence over time in these forests results in periods of tree root decay in the immediate post-fire years, and an associated susceptibility for mass wasting during these time periods. In July 2003, two large crown fires were ignited by lightning in Kootenay National Park, British Columbia, Canada and merged to burn approximately 17 000 hectares. Our field measurements were made in the subalpine forest of Hawk Creek drainage basin, Kootenay National Park. Measurements of tree root

  17. The national wildfire prediction program: a key piece of the wildfire solution

    SciTech Connect

    Bossert, J E; Bradley, M M; Hanson, H P; Schomer, C L; Sumikawa, D A

    1999-08-06

    Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Los Alamos National Laboratory have developed an initiative for a National Wildfire Prediction Program. The program provides guidance for fire managers throughout the country, assisting them to efficiently use limited fire-fighting resources. To achieve maximum cost leveraging, the program builds upon existing physics-based atmospheric and wildfire modeling efforts, a proven emergency response infrastructure, state-of-the-art computer science, and the world's most advanced supercomputers to create a comprehensive wildfire prediction system.

  18. Wildfires

    MedlinePlus

    Open navigation Skip to main content BACK Codes & Standards All codes & standards Toggle this sub-menu open or closed List of NFPA codes & standards National Fire Codes® Subscription Service Standards development ...

  19. Wildfires

    MedlinePlus

    ... Emergencies Biological Threats Chemical Threats Cyber Incident Drought Earthquakes Extreme Heat Explosions Floods Hazardous Materials Incidents Home ... Emergencies Biological Threats Chemical Threats Cyber Incident Drought Earthquakes Extreme Heat Explosions Floods Hazardous Materials Incidents Home ...

  20. Suspended sediment transport in an ephemeral stream following wildfire

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Malmon, D.V.; Reneau, S.L.; Katzman, D.; Lavine, A.; Lyman, J.

    2007-01-01

    We examine the impacts of a stand-clearing wildfire on the characteristics and magnitude of suspended sediment transport in ephemeral streams draining the burn area. We report the results of a monitoring program that includes 2 years of data prior to the Cerro Grande fire in New Mexico, and 3 years of postfire data. Suspended sediment concentration (SSC) increased by about 2 orders of magnitude following the fire, and the proportion of silt and clay increased from 50% to 80%. For a given flow event, SSC is highest at the flood bore and decreases monotonically with time, a pattern evident in every flood sampled both before and after the fire. We propose that the accumulation of flow and wash load at the flow front is an inherent characteristic of ephemeral stream flows, due to amplified momentum losses at the flood bore. We present a new model for computing suspended sediment transport in ephemeral streams (in the presence or absence of wildfire) by relating SSC to the time following the arrival of the flood bore, rather than to instantaneous discharge. Using this model and a rainfall history, we estimate that in the 3 years following the fire, floods transported in suspension a mass equivalent to about 3 mm of landscape lowering across the burn area, 20% of this following a single rainstorm. We test the model by computing fine sediment delivery to a small reservoir in an adjacent watershed, where we have a detailed record of postfire sedimentation based on repeat surveys. Systematic discrepancies between modeled and measured sedimentation rates in the reservoir suggest rapid reductions in suspended sediment delivery in the first several years after the fire.

  1. Impacts of Wildfire on Hawaii Island's Pre-Contact Landscape

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stock, J. D.; Bishaw, K.; McGeehin, J. P.; Perkins, K. S.; Austin, B.; Kirch, P.

    2015-12-01

    The arid western slopes of Hawaii's Mauna Kea volcano record pre-historic landscape changes that accompanied occupation by Native Hawaiians. Stratigraphy in the Keamuku area shows that a long (c. 38-42 ka) period of airfall and eolian deposition and pedogenesis was terminated by at least 8 layers of charcoal-rich sediment, interbedded with sand and shells of land snails that were transported by running water. Streams across Keamuku then cut several meters down through these deposits to bedrock of the Hamakua Volcanics. Radiocarbon ages indicate that charcoal-rich layers were deposited from the 13th-14th Century A.D. (e.g., 1207 +/- 48; 1287 +/- 128 A.D.) through the 17th - 18th century (e.g., 1648 +/- 157; 1651 +/- 160 A.D.; mean probability +/- 2 sigma. Stream incision commenced sometime thereafter. We measured saturated hydraulic conductivities (Ksat) with a mean of 56 mm/hour in nearby soils with tree and shrub cover. This value exceeds common hourly rainfall intensities, so runoff from these landscapes is unlikely without disturbance. Work at a wildfire boundary in Molokai, Hawaii, shows that just after fire disturbance, saturated hydraulic conductivities of similar Hawaiian soils are one half to one fifth of unburned equivalents. One interpretation is that during the 13th-19th centuries and later, humans burned shrub- or tree-covered landscapes reducing soil infiltration capacities. Over the course of several hundred years of burning, one or more large storms with sustained hourly rainfall intensities exceeding the infiltration capacity of the altered land surface occurred soon enough after fires to generate runoff in a place that had not previously experienced it. This runoff carved the existing gully network across over 100 km2 of Keamuku area, as wildfires pushed the shrub-/tree-line upslope. This interpretation joins a growing body of thought that pre-historic human's use of fire fundamentally altered landscapes.

  2. Biomass burning emissions estimates in the boreal forests of Siberia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kukavskaya, E. A.; Ivanova, G. A.; Soja, A. J.; Conard, S. G.

    2012-04-01

    Wildfire is the main boreal forest disturbance and can burn 10-30 million hectares annually, thus modifying the global carbon budget through direct fire emissions, postfire biogenic emissions, and by maintaining or altering ecosystems through establishing the beginning and end of successional processes. Fires in the Russian boreal forest range from low-severity surface fires to high-severity crown fires. Estimates of carbon emissions from fires in Russian boreal forests vary substantially due to differences in ecosystems types, burned area calculations, and the amount of fuel consumed. There is an urgent need to obtain more accurate and impartial fire carbon loss estimates in the boreal forests of Siberia due to their considerable contribution to the regional and global carbon balance. We examined uncertainties in estimates of carbon emissions. Area burned in the Siberian region was analyzed and compared using distinct methodologies. Differences between mapped ecosystems were also compared and contrasted to evaluate the potential for error resulting from disparate vegetation structure and fuel consumption estimates. Accurate fuel consumption estimates are obtained in the course of fire experiments with pre- and post-fire biomass measuring. Our large-scale experiments carried out in the course of the FIRE BEAR (Fire Effects in the Boreal Eurasia Region) Project provided quantitative and qualitative data on ecosystem state and carbon emissions due to fires of known behavior in major forest types of Siberia that could be used to verify large-scale carbon emissions estimates. Carbon emissions from fires vary annually and interannually and can increase several times in extreme fire years in comparison to normal fire years. Climate change and increasing drought length have increased the probability of high-severity fire occurrences. This would result in greater carbon losses and efflux to the atmosphere. This research was supported by NASA LCLUC Program, Fulbright

  3. Airborne In-Situ Trace Gas Measurements of Multiple Wildfires in California (2013-2014)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iraci, L. T.; Yates, E. L.; Tanaka, T.; Roby, M.; Gore, W.; Clements, C. B.; Lareau, N.; Ambrosia, V. G.; Quayle, B.; Schroeder, W.

    2014-12-01

    Biomass burning emissions are an important source of a wide range of trace gases and particles that can impact local, regional and global air quality, climate forcing, biogeochemical cycles and human health. In the western US, wildfires dominate over prescribed fires, contributing to atmospheric trace gas budgets and regional and local air pollution. Limited sampling of emissions from wildfires means western US emission estimates rely largely on data from prescribed fires, which may not be a suitable proxy for wildfire emissions. We report here in-situ measurements of carbon dioxide, methane, ozone and water vapor from the plumes of a variety of wildfires sampled in California in the fire seasons of 2013 and 2014. Included in the analysis are the Rim Fire (August - October 2013, near Yosemite National Park), the Morgan Fire (September 2013, near Clayton, CA), and the El Portal Fire (July - August 2014, in Yosemite National Park), among others. When possible, fires were sampled on multiple days. Emission ratios and estimated emission factors will be presented and discussed in the context of fuel composition, plume structure, and fire phase. Correlations of plume chemical composition to MODIS/VIIRS Fire Radiative Power (FRP) and other remote sensing information will be explored. Furthermore, the role of plumes in delivery of enhanced ozone concentrations to downwind municipalities will be discussed.

  4. Extreme Wildfire Spread and Behaviour: Case Studies from North Sardinia, Italy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salis, M.; Arca, B.; Ager, A.; Fois, C.; Bacciu, V.; Duce, P.; Spano, D.

    2012-04-01

    Worldwide, fire seasons are usually characterized by the occurrence of one or more days with extreme environmental conditions, such as heat waves associated with strong winds. On these days, fires can quickly get out of hand originating large and severe wildfires. In these cases, containment and extinguishment phases are critical, considering that the imperative goal is to keep fire crews, people and animals safe. In this work we will present a set of large and severe wildfires occurred with extreme environmental conditions in the northern area of Sardinia. The most recent wildfire we will describe was ignited on July 13, 2011 in the Oschiri municipality (40°43' N; 9°06' E), and burned about 2,500 ha of wooded and herbaceous pastures and oakwoods in few hours. The second wildfire we will present was ignited on July 23, 2009 in the Bonorva municipality (40°25' N; 8° 46' E), and was responsible for the death of two people and several damages to houses, animals and farms. This wildfire lasted on July 25, and burned about 10,000 ha of wooded and herbaceous pastures; the most of the area was burned during the first day. The last wildfire we will describe was ignited on July 23, 2007 in the Oniferi municipality (40°16' N; 9° 16' E) and burned about 9,000 ha of wooded and herbaceous pastures and oakwoods; about 8,000 ha were burned after 11 hours of propagation. All these wildfires were ignited in days characterized by very hot temperatures associated to the effect of air masses moving from inland North Africa to the Mediterranean Basin, and strong winds from west-south west. This is one of the typical weather pattern associated with large and severe wildfires in North Sardinia, and is well documented in the last years. Weather conditions, fuels and topography factors related to each case study will be accurately analyzed. Moreover, a detailed overview of observed fire spread and behavior and post-fire vegetation recovery will be presented. The fire spread and

  5. Predicting sediment delivery from debris flows after wildfire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nyman, Petter; Smith, Hugh G.; Sherwin, Christopher B.; Langhans, Christoph; Lane, Patrick N. J.; Sheridan, Gary J.

    2015-12-01

    Debris flows are an important erosion process in wildfire-prone landscapes. Predicting their frequency and magnitude can therefore be critical for quantifying risk to infrastructure, people and water resources. However, the factors contributing to the frequency and magnitude of events remain poorly understood, particularly in regions outside western USA. Against this background, the objectives of this study were to i) quantify sediment yields from post-fire debris flows in southeast Australian highlands and ii) model the effects of landscape attributes on debris flow susceptibility. Sediment yields from post-fire debris flows (113-294 t ha- 1) are 2-3 orders of magnitude higher than annual background erosion rates from undisturbed forests. Debris flow volumes ranged from 539 to 33,040 m3 with hillslope contributions of 18-62%. The distribution of erosion and deposition above the fan were related to a stream power index, which could be used to model changes in yield along the drainage network. Debris flow susceptibility was quantified with a logistic regression and an inventory of 315 debris flow fans deposited in the first year after two large wildfires (total burned area = 2919 km2). The differenced normalised burn ratio (dNBR or burn severity), local slope, radiative index of dryness (AI) and rainfall intensity (from rainfall radar) were significant predictors in a susceptibility model, which produced excellent results in terms identifying channels that were eroded by debris flows (Area Under Curve, AUC = 0.91). Burn severity was the strongest predictor in the model (AUC = 0.87 when dNBR is used as single predictor) suggesting that fire regimes are an important control on sediment delivery from these forests. The analysis showed a positive effect of AI on debris flow probability in landscapes where differences in moisture regimes due to climate are associated with large variation in soil hydraulic properties. Overall, the results from this study based in the

  6. Perceptions of Post-Wildfire Landscape Change and Recovery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kooistra, C. M.; Hall, T. E.; Paveglio, T.; Carroll, M.; Smith, A. M.

    2013-12-01

    Considering the dynamic nature of the earth and climate systems and the increasing potential for widespread forest disturbances, it is important to understand the implications of landscape changes, and perceptions of changes, on people's responses to forest disturbances. Understanding how people perceive landscape change over time following forest disturbances helps researchers, land managers, and community leaders identify important biophysical and social characteristics that influence the vulnerability of people who experience forest disturbances, as well as their responses to those disturbances. This poster describes people's perceptions of landscape change following a significant wildfire. The lightning ignited Dahl fire burned 12 miles southeast of Roundup, MT mostly on private land in the summer of June 2012. The fire burned approximately 22,000 acres and destroyed 73 residences. We conducted interviews in the summer of 2013 with more than 40 residents, land managers, emergency personnel, and other stakeholders. While interviews covered several topics, this poster focuses on responses to questions regarding perceptions of short- and long-term landscape change after the fire, including both social and biophysical perspectives. Interviews revealed that people's understanding of the role of wildfires as a natural ecosystem process, as well as their connections with the landscape (i.e., sense of place), were important factors that influenced their perceptions of landscape change after the fire. Many respondents discussed the landscape ';recovering' to pre-fire conditions in longer-term timeframes, such as ';multiple generations.' They often referenced previous wildfires, the Hawk Creek fire (1984) and the Majeras fire (2006), by explaining how parts of the landscape affected by the Dahl fire might compare to certain areas of the previous fires. Variations in recovery expectations were often based on perceptions of the severity of the fire (especially temperature

  7. Wildfire risk as a socioecological pathology

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fischer, A. Paige; Spies, Thomas A; Steelman, Toddi A; Moseley, Cassandra; Johnson, Bart R.; Bailey, John D.; Ager, Alan A; Bourgeron, Patrick S.; Charnley, Susan; Collins, Brandon M.; Kline, Jeffrey D; Leahy, Jessica E; Littell, Jeremy; Millington, James D. A.; Nielsen-Pincus, Max; Olsen, Christine S; Paveglio, Travis B; Roos, Christopher I.; Steen-Adams, Michelle M; Stevens, Forrest R; Vukomanovic, Jelena; White, Eric M; Bowman, David M J S

    2016-01-01

    Wildfire risk in temperate forests has become a nearly intractable problem that can be characterized as a socioecological “pathology”: that is, a set