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Title: Design of a frame work for producing and providing earth observation based information services for forest fires management at European and local levels (Control Fire Sat) / Control Fire Sat Project
Language: English
Description: The aim of the CFS Project was the provision of real-time Earth Observation data to be used in forest fire management. A pre-operational warning and information system was developed. CFS delivered four customized products derived from NOAA-AVHRR data: daily fire risk maps; a fire detection and warning system operating during night hours; monitoring of the fire front evolution during a fire event, and a near real-time web delivery system for the previous products. Activities covered the summer seasons of 1998 and 1999 for Greece, Spain and France. The project ran from 1998 to 2000.
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Title: PiroPinus version 2.0 /
Language: English
Description: PiroPinus is a prescribed burning guide for maritime pine (Pinus pinaster) stands in the form of a spreadsheet, conceived for operational use in the planning and evaluation of hazard reduction burns in natural fuels, i.e. slash from pruning or thinning is not present. It can also be used as a research tool for fire modelling purposes. Potential users are urged to try the guide in other medium- to long-needled pines (P. pinea, P. canariensis, P. radiata, P. nigra, P. halepensis), especially when the understorey is composed of Mediterranean-type species. PiroPinus is a all-in-one user-friendly tool that integrates models based on observed, real-world, fire behaviour and effects. Unlike other available tools, PiroPinus has the ability to: 1. Reflect local stand and fuel conditions in the output; 2. Assess the likelihood of sustained fire spread and quantify marginal burning conditions. Fire modelling systems using properly developed custom fuel models can be used to obtain accurate estimates of fire behaviour. However, such systems perform poorly at the high-end of the moisture content range and are not able to produce site-specific estimates. PiroPinus is composed of several interrelated or stand-alone worksheets for distinct objectives: (1) FUEL. Data entry of basic fuel and stand descriptors to assess fuel load and fire behaviour and effects; (2) RX WIN. Prescription window (general burning conditions); (3) RX DEV. Prescription development, the definition of burning conditions to avoid undesired fire impacts on trees and the forest floor; (4) MOIST. Fuel moisture content, to estimate the moisture contents of surface fine dead fuels and decomposing litter; (5) FIRE. Ignition and fire behaviour, to assess the likelihood of fire spread and quantify fire characteristics; (6) IGN PLAN. Assessment and optimization of area treatment rate; (7) TREES. Fire impact on trees, to assess canopy damage and mortality; (8) FUEL DYN. Fuel dynamics, to estimate fuel consumption and post-burn accumulation; (9) POST-FIRE. Post-burn assessment of fire behaviour and effects; (10) WEATH. Wind speed estimation and Canadian Forest Fire Danger Rating System (for regional planning).
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Title: Burned Areas in Russia /
Language: English
Description: These data were produced at the Sukachev Institute of Forestry in Krasnoyarsk, using AVHRR satellite data from the receiving station in Krasnoyarsk as well as from the NOAA Satellite Active Archive. Fire activity was detected during the fire season by an algorithm based on determining the probability of a fire from the AVHRR thermal channels, and was enhanced by end-of-season mapping of fire scars. The period covered is from 1996 to 2002.
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Title: Fire Hazard Mapper (User's manual) / GIS tool to produce Fire Hazard maps (User's manual)
Language: English
Description: Fire Hazard Mapper is a software application, which is going to produce fire hazard maps, using as input data concerning structural (fuel models, topography, climate, etc) and daily factors (temperature, relative humidity, precipitation, wind speed).
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Title: MFM Calculator (User's manual) / GIS interface to daily assess the meteorological parameters and the drought or moisture content (FMC) index (User's manual)
Language: English
Description: MFM Calculator is a GIS software tool, which is calculating the meteorological and fuel moisture components of the fire risk. The tool uses a a combination of Kriging and the inverse distance weighting (IDW) methods to interpolate values of meteorological parameters (air temperature, daily total precipitation, relative humidity and wind speed) from point sources (meteo stations). Further, the tool calculates a modified version of the Keech-Byram index for Mediterranean conditions and a Fuel Moisture Content (FMC) index over a geographic area
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Title: Fuel Mapper (User's manual) / An easy to use tool to recognize and map fuel models (User's manual)
Language: English
Description: Fuel Mapper is a GIS software application, which is going to produce fuel type maps, using as input land cover/vegetation type information and vegetation height data. The output is a fuel type map classified according to a chosen fuel typology (NFFL or Prometheus).
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Title: D5.1-1 METHOD TO ASSESS WITH GOOD SPATIAL ACCURACY THE METEOROLOGICAL AND FUEL MOISTURE COMPONENTS OF THE FIRE RISK /
Language: English
Description: Drought is considered a recurring phenomenon that affects natural ecosystems, as well as many economical and social sectors (Heim 2002). Forest fires are greatly affected by weather conditions while the relationship between meteorological variables and fire occurrence is well known. Thus, forest fires tend to be concentrated during the dry summer period when temperature is high, air humidity is low and fuel moisture is reduced (Pinol et al. 1998). The overall objective of the deliverable is to enable the improvement of the quality of the daily performed fire hazard previsions, by combining the structural components of the hazard (i.e. fuel models, topography), with the “dynamic” factors such as the current meteorological parameters and the fuel moisture or drought conditions. The specific objectives of the methodology presented hereafter, are to elaborate a consistent tool that improves the spatial accuracy of the meteorological variables recorded from existing meteorological stations’ network, and provide a remote sensed fuel moisture content index, as well as an empirical drought index.
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Title: Deliverable 5.1-1-33 Method to assess with good spatial accuracy the meteorological and fuel moisture components of the fire risk /
Language: English
Description: Drought is considered a recurring phenomenon that affects natural ecosystems, as well as many economical and social sectors (Heim 2002). Forest fires are greatly affected by weather conditions while the relationship between meteorological variables and fire occurrence is well known. Thus, forest fires tend to be concentrated during the dry summer period when temperature is high, air humidity is low and fuel moisture is reduced (Pinol et al. 1998). The overall objective of the deliverable is to enable the improvement of the quality of the daily performed fire hazard previsions, by combining the structural components of the hazard (i.e. fuel models, topography), with the “dynamic” factors such as the current meteorological parameters and the fuel moisture or drought conditions. The specific objectives of the methodology presented hereafter, are to elaborate a consistent tool that improves the spatial accuracy of the meteorological variables recorded from existing meteorological stations’ network, and provide a remote sensed fuel moisture content index, as well as an empirical drought index.
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Title: Deliverable 5.1-2 Method to produce vegetation and fuel maps using satellite imagery /
Language: English
Description: The activity 5.1.2 of the WP 5.1 consists: (a) in producing stand maps using satellite imagery (Quickbird or Ikonos) on which image segmentation techniques with the necessary correction of satellite images are applied. The work will be carried out in 2 sites in South of France (Luberon-Aix area and Maures area, of around 100 km2 surface each), in 2 sites in Greece (Thessaloniki area and Holomondas area of around 250 km2 total surface), and in 3 sites in Argentinia (Patagonia and Chacos regions) (b) in generating an automatic Digital Surface Model (DSM) from stereo imagery using softcopy photogrammetric mapping and GIS systems that operate in a desktop computing environment. The DSM, which is generated by the softcopy software using autocorrelation techniques, models the reflective surface rather than bare earth.
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Title: Deliverable 5.1-2 Method to produce vegetation and fuel maps using satellite imagery /
Language: English
Description: The production of stand maps is a key element in order to recognize the fuel types and calculate the fuel load for a specific area. The present Deliverable aims to present several tested and validated methods for vegetation and fuel mapping with high resolution Remote Sensing images. The traditional method for capturing geographic information (the digitization from satellite images) is time-consuming and lacks accuracy. In order to overcome this significant disadvantage of digitization, a number of image processing technologies and software have been tested or developed. The objective is to provide tools for feature extraction from satellite images. Several fuel types have been defined and described in South of France (Aix-en-Provence area), in two sites in Greece (Thessaloniki area and Holomondas area), and in two sites in Morocco (Tanghaya and Izarène forests). Spectral methods for fuel mapping are investigated. In a first step, evaluating the efficiency of spectral method to discriminate stand types (Landcover). In a second step, object oriented classification methods are applied to satellite data, taking into account the need to assess different variables for fuel types mapping. In a third step, methods for fuel mapping with the integration of full objects (eCognition, Feature Analyst) and textures (GLCM algorithm) are tested. Digital Surface Models derived from space borne remote sensing techniques and aerial photography using softcopy photogrammetry can provide reliable information (height determination) for fuel mapping. The quality of DSM production is assessed. The capabilities of different methods of classification with several sensors and resolutions are synthesize. Perspectives are given on the objective of the activity 5.1.2 which aims to develop a global approach and a tool (software) to map fuel models and combustibility from several data sources. The goal is to organise different methods into a processing framework, allowing the user to take into account his different constraints and specificities.
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Title: Deliverable .5.1-5 Development of a user friendly GIS interface to daily assess the meteorological parameters and the drought or moisture content (FMC) index - User’s manual /
Language: English
Description: D5.1-5 is a user manual for a GIS tool to calculate the drought index and fuel moisture content. For the calculation of the drought index (Modified KBDI for the Mediterranean conditions) at least three raster datasets are required by the application in order to perform calculations: (a) daily maximum temperature data, (b) daily rainfall data, and (c) mean annual rainfall data. For the calculation of Fuel Moisture Content (FMC) two raster datasets are required by the application in order to perform calculations: (a) Normalized Difference Infrared Index (NDII) data, and (b) Reduced Sample Ratio (RSR) data.
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Title: D5.2-2 Guide for end-users to characterize and to map wildland urban interfaces /
Language: English
Description: The objective of this guide is to propose methodologies to characterize and map wildland urban interfaces.
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Title: D5.2-4 Method to assess damage on vegetation /
Language: English
Description: Methods for damage assessment on vegetation are focused on the use of remotely sensed data for mapping burned areas, the type of fire and fire severity. The following parts will discuss the main methods developed for those specific assessments.
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Title: D5.3-1 Report on the effects of broad scale and long-term application of prescribed burning on fire risk components /
Language: English
Description: Effect of prescribed burning on the mitigation of fire risk was discussed in fire prone ecosystems of three European countries (Greece, France and Portugal). Two study cases were presented using two different fire modelling approaches, the spatial fire growth model FARSITE and FIRETEC a physically based fire propagation model. This study showed that fuel management with prescribed burning had a significant effect on fire propagation hazard. It needs to be completed with further studies on prescribed burning effects on the other fire risk components such as ignition likelihood or vulnerability (fire effects on trees). First results also showed the need of optimizing the spatial pattern of fire application both when applied extensively on the landscape, and when located on a fuel break network. The first study case concerned a conifer forest located in Kassandra peninsula in northern Greece, which has been affected by a 7120 ha wildfire in August 2006. Prescribed burning effectiveness was assessed by using the FARSITE simulator for comparing fire spread over the landscape before and after prescribed burning application on a network of stripe-shaped fuel-breaks. Analysis showed a significant reduction of fire potential (fireline intensity, flame length and total burned area) as a result of fuel treatments. The second study case concerned a shrubland and woodland mosaic in limestone Provence, France, where prescribed burning has been used as a fuel reduction tool for more than 15 years The effectiveness of prescribed burning was assessed by comparing fire potential (rate of spread, fireline intensity) before and in the years following prescribed burning treatments. Analysis carried out at the stand scale gave valuable information on the immediate potential fire hazard reduction after prescribed burning. In order to estimate the appropriate prescribed burning return interval, two management scenarios were used (i) a fire intensity threshold compatible with efficient and safe fire fighting or (ii) a shrub encroachment threshold easy to assess by forest managers. In both cases, the prescribed burning return interval varied from 2 to 3 years, depending on fuel types. When applying prescribed burning on a 15 years period, fire risk mapping on the whole State forest showed a higher fire risk reduction when using the fire intensity threshold than a fuel encroachment threshold. A third study case in the Portuguese mainland tested an important assumption of the fire paradox: does fuel age have an influence on burn probability and wildfire size? Fire frequency analysis of mapped fire perimeters ≥10 ha (1998-2008) indicated that fire occurrence was weakly to moderately dependent of fuel age. However, contrarily to the usual expectation, age-dependency did not decrease for larger fire size classes (i.e with increasingly extreme fire weather). Finally, we explored the variation in fire size statistics with fuel age. Older fuels (roughly >8 years after burning) were associated to more variable fire sizes, allowing much larger wildfires. From the results we infer that landscapes submitted to a mean prescribed fire return interval of 4 years will not support wildfires larger than 500 ha. However, adequate spatial planning of the treatments is expected to reduce the annual treatment rate. This deliverable contributes to solving the Fire Paradox because it clearly shows how fuel modification can decrease wildfire hazard and severity which is the first specific objective to be addressed in Integrated Wildland Fire Management. The state of the art chapter has shown that several fuel modification techniques, such as mechanical treatments, are available and used in Europe, but it has also demonstrated that prescribed burning although being increasingly used in some countries, still has to be strongly supported with the objective of the wisest complementarities between fuel treatments. Also, prescribed burning is the approach based on the paradox of fire, reducing fuels strategically before they can be used by wildfires, thus decreasing wildfire risk and severity.
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Title: Deliverable 5.3-4 Guide for End Users to design Prescribed burning and other actions to mitigate fire risk in the Mediterranean ecosystems /
Language: English
Description: The use of appropriate fuel treatments, such as prescribed burning and silvicultural treatments could be a decisive tool for the management of wildfire hazard and the mitigation of the wildfires impacts on ecosystems and society. This Guide is based on the experience of the treatments implementation, particularly in Europe and tries to give some general rules on the treatment that should be applied in each case. The Guide begins with the description of the forest ecosystems concerned, then presents basic information about the fire environment, and gives an estimation of the wildfire risk in each case. The Guide continues with a short description of the most known fuel treatments, including prescribed burning, as well as several silvicultural treatments such as thinning, pruning, clearing, herbicide application and control grazing. The criteria for the selection of the most suitable treatment are then analysed, mainly based on the type of the ecosystems and the topographic characteristics, while the application methodology of the treatment selected is then described. The Guide finally presents the case of three typical Mediterranean ecosystems, where the above-mentioned treatments were applied, and the fire behaviour was simulated in order to estimate their effectiveness on the fire risk mitigation.
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Title: Deliverable 5.4-2 Recommendations for prescribed burning mapping in Mediterranean-type natural vegetation and forests (merged with D5.4-3). /
Language: English
Description: The assessment of the landscape by means of fire hazard classification over time, can form a useful basis for integrated fire management planning and fire protection, including prescribed burning application planning. In some regions of South Africa these procedures have reduced wildfire damage with more than 80% over more than one decade. Similar assessment procedures - with the aid of mapping - are also recommended for European countries, where burnable areas exceed 10 000 ha.
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Title: D5.2-1 METHOD TO CHARACTERIZE AND TO MAP WILDLAND URBAN INTERFACE /
Language: English
Description: N/A
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Title: Deliverable 5.1-6 Development of an easy to use tool to recognize and map fuel models (including results of D5.1-2) /
Language: English
Description: The production of stand maps is a key element in order to recognize the fuel types and calculate the fuel load for a specific area. The present Deliverable aims to present the development of an easy to use tool to recognize and map fuel models, on the basis of several tested and validated methods for vegetation and fuel mapping with high resolution Remote Sensing images. The traditional method for capturing geographic information (the digitization from satellite images) is time-consuming and lacks accuracy. In order to overcome this significant disadvantage of digitization, a number of image processing technologies and software have been tested or developed. The objective is to provide implemented tools for feature extraction from satellite images. Several fuel types have been defined and described in South of France (Aix-en-Provence and Lamanon area), in two sites in Greece (Thessaloniki area and Holomondas area), and in two sites in Morocco (Tanghaya and Izarène forests). Spectral methods for fuel mapping are investigated. In a first step, evaluating the efficiency of spectral method to discriminate stand types (Landcover). In a second step, object oriented classification methods are applied to satellite data, taking into account the need to assess different variables for fuel types mapping. In a third step, methods for fuel mapping with the integration of full objects (eCognition, Feature Analyst) and textures (GLCM algorithm) are tested. A vertical fuel vegetation stratification by height and intensity data from airborne laser scanning is presented. Digital Surface Models derived from space borne remote sensing techniques and aerial photography using softcopy photogrammetry can provide reliable information (height determination) for fuel mapping. The quality of DSM production is assessed. The capabilities of different methods of classification with several sensors and resolutions are synthesized. A global approach and a tool (software) to map fuel models and combustibility from several data sources are developed. Different methods are implemented into a processing framework, allowing the user to take into account different constraints and specificities of geodata.
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Title: D5.2-1 Method to Characterize and to Map Wildland Urban Interface. Part1- State of the art on the methods to characterize and to map wildland urban interfaces /
Language: English
Description: D5.2-1 part 1 provides an overview of the methods to characterize and to map wildland urban interfaces.
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Title: D5.2-3 Development of a field survey “post fire assessment protocol” /
Language: English
Description: This document which acts as a protocol to be used in post-fire damage assessment consists of the following parts: a one-page field-survey template form, detailed description of the template, and, instructions on how to fill in the template. The protocol is based, mainly, on the works of González-Alonso (2004), Ruiz Gallardo (2004) and Key & Benson (2004) and focuses on assessing fire damage on vegetation at the landscape level. The proposed template can be used to record fire severity both qualitatively and quantitatively, and, is compatible to be used with remotely sensed satellite imagery.
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Title: D5.2-1 Method to characterize and to map wildland urban interface. Part 2- Methods developed in France, Spain and Greece. Application of the different methods to characterize and to map wildland urban interfaces in Sardinia /
Language: English
Description: D5.2-1 part 2 describes methods developed in France, Spain and Greece to characterize and map the wildland urban interface. The three methods were then used to characterize and map the wildland urban interface in Sardinia.
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Title: D5.2-5 Literature review and synopsis of the methodologies to estimate vulnerability /
Language: English
Description: A literature review and synopsis of the methodologies to estimate vulnerability. The main sections of the report are: Vulnerability as a wildfire risk component; Vulnerability assessment (including - Population vulnerability, Structural vulnerability, Vulnerability of the environmental values, Soil vulnerability, Vulnerability index).
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Title: Comportamiento del fuego en un pastizal del sitio ecológico ‘media loma’, región chaqueña occidental (Argentina) / Fire behaviour in grassland ecological site 'media loma', western Chaco region (Argentina)
Language: Spanish
Description: Fire behavior, considered a part of fire ecology, is together with fire prevention one of the two components of the ´fire triangle´ currently used as a basis for fire management and control. We assessed the fire behavior in a grassland located in the midland range ecological site in the Chaco region, northwestern Argentina. The site of the experiments was the ´La María´Experimental ranch, INTA Santiago del Estero Research Station, (28º 03’ S 64º 15’ E). Fire was applied in two study sites in 6 plots each. Fine fuel load, botanical composition, and fine fuel bulk density were estimated by sampling. Fire behavior was assessed by estimating forward rate of spread and flame length. These data were analysed using ANOVA with study site as independent variable. Correlation among variables was assessed using the Kendall’s ô correlation coefficient. Study sites presented a different botanical composition: plots were either dominated by Trichloris pluriflora (E.) Fournier, or by Pappophorum pappipherum (Lam.) Kuntze. Plant of these species possess different proportion of stems and leaves. These facts significantly affected fine fuel load, bulk density (p > F = 0,0001 in both cases) and the forward rate of spread (p > F = 0.0001). The latter was 27,62 m*min-1 in study site 1, where the first species dominated; and 21 m*.min-1 in study site 2, where the second dominated, respectively. Average flame length was 3,5 m, but reached 6 m when volatile shrubs ignited and participated in the propagation of fire. Correlations among forward rate of spread and fuel load with bulk density was positive and significant (p < 0,0001), but was not significant in the case of flame length. Fires were of high intensity and move fast and need blacklines or other indirect measures for control.
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