Is Indonesia’s fight against forest fires falling short?

Using robots to detect forest fires

By Stephen Corby | 01 December 2017

 

Rex Sham and his WALL-E-inspired robots are improving fire detection to slash carbon emissions and make the world better.

If he were in a movie, Rex Sham would be the bad guy, or at the very least the well-meaning scientist who unwittingly wipes out the human race. In reality, Sham, the co-founder and chief science officer of Insight Robotics, is using his ingenious, WALL-E-like fire-detecting robots to save the planet.

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Global Wildland Fire Early Warning

Global Early Warning System for Wildland Fire

Mapping Products

Global Fire EWS 10-day forecasts

Global FWI Monthly Forecasts

Outline of Fire Danger Products in the Global Fire EWS

The fire danger indicators currently presented on the Global Fire Early Warning System (Global Fire EWS) are components of the Canadian Forest Fire Weather Index (FWI) System. The Global EWS provides 1-10 day forecasted FWI System data based on the Canadian Meterolological Centre’s (CMC) Global Deterministic Forecast System (GDPS). The FWI System components are currently calibrated to commonly used threshold values that identify low to extreme conditions. As such, the Global EWS provides a means of comparing relative fire danger conditions between countries, continents, and biomes; and the 1-10 day forecast identifies the expected future fire danger trend. This type of information is often useful for large-scale fire management decision-making such as planning cross-border suppression resource exchanges.

Although these indicators can be used to compare fire danger across the globe, the indicators are not calibrated to the local fire regime, which includes the influences of fuel, ignition sources, climate, fire management/suppression policy, etc. For that reason, the next stage in development of this system is regional calibration to adjust the fire danger scales using historical fire data (primarily remotely sensed) and weather data. This will calibrate the fire danger indicators to provide operational-level information such as potential for fire starts and difficulty of control. Regional calibration will be an on-going collaborative effort with regional and national agencies.

The FWI System has 6 components that represent fuel dryness and potential fire behaviour at the landscape level. All components are presented in the Global EWS:

  • Fire Weather Index (FWI) is a general indicator of fire danger and fire intensity
  • Buildup Index (BUI) indicates dryness of medium and large dead fuels
  • Initial Spread Index (ISI) is an indicator of rate of fire spread
  • Drought Code (DC) indicates dryness of deep, compact organic layers in the forest floor
  • Duff Moisture Code (DMC) indicates dryness of loosely compacted, upper organic layers of the forest floor; often used as a predictor of lightning-caused fires
  • Fine Fuel Moisture Code (FFMC) is an indicator of the dryness of dead fine fuels; often used as a predictor of human- and lightning-caused fires

More details on the FWI System can be found on the Canadian Wildland Fire Information System website , and the Canadian Meterolological Centre’s (CMC) Global Deterministic Forecast System (GDPS) at https://weather.gc.ca/grib/index_e.html . As the Global EWS develops in future, other fire danger indicators and weather forecast models will be included for multiple comparisons. As well, various remote sensing data will be incorporated to provide additional fire danger products.

International Workshop on National Guidelines on the Protection of Forests Against Fire

Bogor, Indonesia, 8-9 December 1997
(IFFN No. 18 – January 1998, p. 49-51)

Johann G. Goldammer, Editor IFFN

As a consequence of the fires and smoke pollution in Indonesia between 1982 and 1994 a cooperation agreement was made to develop a project “Integrated Forest fire Management in Indonesia Phase I: National Guidelines on the Protection of Forests against Fires”. The cooperation agreement between the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO), the Common Fund for Commodities (CFC), the Directorate General of Forest protection and Nature Conservation, Ministry of Forestry, and the Faculty of Forestry, Bogor University of Agricultural Sciences, was signed on 21 October 1996.

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Field Visit to Bintuni

By: Erianto Indra Saputra | 16 November 2017

 

As part of the Y-1 activities of UMCES/IPB-NASA Tropical Peat Fire Project, the team visited Bintuni Regency, West Papua to explore the opportunity to conduct peat fire research there. The co-director of the project, Prof. Dr. Bambang Hero Saharjo (Faculty of Forestry IPB) lead the team, accompanied by Dr. Erianto Indra Putra (Faculty of Forestry IPB), Dr. Grahame Applegate (Univ. of Sunshine Coast, Australia), and Andri Thomas (BOSF, Central Kalimantan). The team left Jakarta to Manokwari on 11 November 2017 and arrived safely on the early morning of 12 November 2017. After having the opening meeting with the Vice Dean of the University of Papua, the team continued the trip to Bintuni Regency on 13 November 2017 by using small plane operated by Susi Air (Fig. 1). Three faculty staff from Faculty of Forestry, University of Papua, joined the team to Bintuni. They are Benny Rettob (Dean), Wolfram Mofu (Head of the Department) and Alfredo Wanma (senior lecturer).

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Forest Fire Control Continues into The Rainy Season

01 October 2017

 

JAKARTA, NETRALNEWS.COM – Director of Forest and Land Fire Control, Ministry of Environment and Forestry (KLHK) Raffles B Panjaitan said the rainfall forecasts in several regions in Indonesia did not reduce the efforts to prevent and suppress forest and land fires (karhutla) by the KLHK Karhutla Control Brigade, Manggala Agni.

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Five named suspects in Jambi land, forest fires

9 September  2017

 

JAMBI, The Jambi Police have named five people as suspects during their investigation into seven land and forest fire cases, which occurred from January to August.

Jambi Police spokesperson Comr. Wirmanto Dinata said three out of the seven cases were handled by the Tebo Police while two cases were investigated by the Batanghari Police. The East Tanjungjabung Police and the Muarojambi Police handled one case each.

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Jambi land, forest fires continue

6 September 2017

 

JAMBI, While the number of hot spots in some areas across Sumatra is declining with the onset of the rainy season, land and forest fires in Jambi continue to break out.

The Jambi administration’s Land and Forest Fire Task Force data shows that fires in the province cover 488 hectares in seven regencies. They comprise Batanghari, Bungo, East Tanjungjabung, Muarojambi, Sarolangun, Tebo and West Tanjungjabung.

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The National inter-agency round table forest and fire management and Launching Regional Fire Management Resource Center – South East Asia Region (RFMRC-SEA)

Jakarta, Manggala Wanabhakti, Room Sonokeling, 10 July 2017

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Malaysia is willing to assist Indonesia to battle forest fire

Sin Chew Daily/ ANN | 01 August 2017

 

Natural Resources and Environment Minister Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said Malaysia is ready to send fire fighters and officers to help Indonesia put out forest fire.

After launching the smart tunnel run 2017 today, he told media that the government is viewing forest fire in Indonesia seriously as it may spark off haze and the government is ready to offer assistance.

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