Information - IS34 - NH8.4/BG2.16 Spatial and temporal patterns of wildfires: models, theory, and reality (co-organized by NH & BG; co-listed in SSS)
Wildfires are the result of a large variety and number of interacting components, producing patterns that vary significantly both spatially and temporally. This session will examine models, theory, and empirical studies in wildfire research. We encourage submissions in any one or combination of these three main areas, and envision bringing together wildfire hazard managers, applied researchers, and theoreticians. Posters are also very much encouraged, as we plan to have both lively oral and poster sessions.
Preliminary List of Solicited Speakers
Wildfire Statistics: Implications for Ecology, Risk and Government Agency Reporting
Bruce D. Malamud
Department of Geography, King’s College London, UK
There is increasing evidence that wildfire burned areas satisfy power-law or other heavy-tailed frequency-size statistics. Although many in the academic communities are accepting heavy-tailed statistics, many government agencies still assume a thinner-tailed distributions (e.g. Gaussian) to describe the frequency-size distribution of burned areas. The choice of the statistical distribution used or assumed has many implications to both wildfire research (including wildfire models) and the reporting of wildfire statistics (e.g. ’average area’, number of fires burned) by government agencies.
In this paper we will present the frequency-size distributions for wildfires in
several regions worldwide, found to be robust power-laws, and the implications of these statistics to ecology, risk and the reporting of wildfire summary statistics by government agencies.
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