Estimating direct carbon emissions from Canadian wildland fires Conferences uri icon

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  • In support of Canada‚Äôs National Forest Carbon Monitoring, Accounting and Reporting System, a project was initiated to develop and test procedures for estimating direct carbon emissions from fires. The Canadian Wildland Fire Information System (CWFIS) provides the infrastructure for these procedures. Area burned and daily fire spread estimates are derived from satellite products. Spatially and temporally explicit indices of burning conditions for each fire are calculated by CWFIS using fire weather data. The Carbon Budget Model of the Canadian Forest Sector (CBM-CFS3) provides detailed forest type and leading species information, as well as pre-fire fuel load data. The Boreal Fire Effects Model calculates fuel consumption for different live biomass and dead organic matter pools in each burned cell according to fuel type, fuel load, burning conditions, and resulting fire behaviour. Carbon emissions are calculated from fuel consumption. CWFIS summarises the data in the form of disturbance matrices and provides spatially explicit estimates of area burned for national reporting. CBM-CFS3 integrates, at the national scale, these fire data with data on forest management and other disturbances. The methodology for estimating fire emissions was tested using a large-fire pilot study. A framework to implement the procedures at the national scale is described.


  • de Groot, William J
  • Landry, Robert
  • Kurz, Werner A
  • Anderson, Kerry R
  • Englefield, Peter
  • Fraser, Robert H
  • Hall, Ronald J
  • Banfield, Ed
  • Raymond, Donald A
  • Decker, Vincent
  • Lynham, Tim J
  • Pritchard, Janet

publication date

  • 2007