Taming wildfires by understanding climate
A research team in Missouri has developed a model to better inform and predict the frequency of future wildfires based on climatic conditions.
This research tool will provide new information about how wildfire frequency changes and how climate conditions influence the frequency of wildfires. Its application can benefit fire management, wildfire risk and preparedness, helping guide wildfire policies and predict future smoke emissions.
The scientists apply physics and chemistry to the work, but also have refined their model by conducting fieldwork, including collecting data from fire-scarred trees. Fire scars can measure when and how frequently fires occurred over long periods of time.
While wildfire damage can’t be fully prevented, the model can help scientists understand climate's influence on wildfire probability and where and why it changes across different regions.