GFMC: Forest Fires in the Russian Federation

Forest Fires in the Russian Federation

26 April 2003

Latest Satellite Images

Fires in Eastern Russia
South of the snow line in eastern Russia, numerous fires were burning and filling the skies with thick smoke on April 23, 2003. This Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) from the Aqua satellite shows the fires marked with red dots in Russia (top) and China (bottom). Dark brown burn scars are associated with many of the fires, and the smoke covers thousands of square kilometers

Fires Southeast of Lake Baikal
East of still-frozen Lake Baikal in south-central Russia, numerous fires (red dots) were detected by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on the Aqua satellite on April 22, 2003. The burning in the region has been ongoing for more than a month. As snow retreats, farmers begin preparing land for spring planting

According the official report of Avialesookhrana of 24 April 2003 a total of 116 fires are burning in Buriatia (100 of them in lake Baikal zone), 28 fires in Irkutsk (Region 11 of them in lake Baikal zone), 140 fires in Chita (15 of them in lake Baikal zone).

Avialesookhrana from the National Forest Fire Centre of Russia provides up-to-date NOAA images for the whole of the Russian Federation and neighbour territories. The Space Monitoring Information Support Laboratory provides extensive links to sites with satellite imagery for the Russian Federation, meteorological information as well as fire related images are accessible.

The NOAA AVHRR satellite image composite shows fire activities in the Russian Federation.

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Latest NOAA 12&14 AVHRR composite
The red squares indicate regions of active fires. For details the GFMC readers are encouraged to use the hyperlinks provided by Avialesookhrana, the Aerial Forest Fire Protection Service of the Federal Forest service of Russia.
(Source: Avialesookhrana cloudiness maps)

Latest fire situation report by the Aerial Forest Fire Protection Service of Russia (Avialesookhrana), 23 April 2003

For the last days fire activities passed from Siberia to the European part of Russia via the Ural mountains and were observed in Central, South, Privolzhskiy, Ural, Siberian, Far East Federal Districts (Federal Okrug in Russian).

According to the situation report of the Ministry of Natural Resources of 22 April 2003 a total of 136 fires affected 7,007 ha forested and 802 ha non-forested areas. In addition 136 fires occurred that were put out the same day when they started.

Since the beginning of the 2003 fire season a total of 1974 fires affected 37,888 ha forested and 15,917 ha non-forested land under the responsibility of the Ministry of Natural Resources. (For comparison: Last year up to this date 1,134 fires had burnt 2,292 ha forested and 1,880 ha non-forested lands.)

In addition there are very large fire in Khingan preserve (Amur region, a preserve under the responsibility of MNR as well). For one day the fires affected 2,000 ha forested and 25,900 ha non-forested area.

Most fires have been reported in the following regions:

  • Chita region – 124 fires

  • Buriatia – 115

  • Irkutsk – 25

  • Khabarovsk – 23

  • Amur – 8

  • Altay – 8

  • Cheliabinsk – 57

  • Ulianovsk – 16

  • Samara – 10

Large fires were reported in:

  • Chita region – 22 fires, the biggest is 1,500 ha

  • Buriatia -9 fires, the biggest is 850 ha

  • Irkutsk -7 fires, the biggest is 310 ha

  • Amur -1 fire (mentioned above)

Through all of Russia 3766 people, 17 aircraft, 655 bulldozers, tractors and engines have been involved in fire fighting.

Source: Aerial Forest Fire Protection Service of Russia (Avialesookhrana)

Eurasian Experimental Fire Weather Information System
The system has been developed by forest fire researchers from Canada, Russia and Germany is displayed on this website starting 18 July 2001. Complete information and a set of daily fire weather and fire behaviour potential maps covering Eurasia (the Baltic Region, Eastern Europe, countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States, Mongolia) can be accessed at:

Example of the Eurasian Experimental Fire Weather Information System:
Latest map of the Experimental Fire Weather Index (FWI) for Russia and neighbouring countries

Daily Fire Occurrence and Fire Danger Maps of the Fire Laboratory of the Sukachev Institute of Forest, Krasnoyarsk
Selected fire occurrence maps, satellite images and a forest fire danger map are prepared daily by the Russian GFMC correspondent Dr. Anatoly Sukhinin, Fire Laboratory of the Sukachev Institute of Forest, Krasnoyarsk, in collaboration with the Emergency Situation Monitoring and Forecasting Agency, Krasnoyarsk branch. The maps are produced on the base of satellite data (classification by the NOAA AVHRR). They show the fire locations (by latitude and longitude) and the area affected by fire (red signature, size in ha). The red arrow at each fire location points to the nearest populated place. The terms Oblast or Kray used in the maps are designations of administrative regions. A map showing the boundaries ofadministrative regions and a legend is included below.

ru_fire_legend.gif (937 Byte)

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Map legend

Administrative boundaries

Overview map showing large fire locations detected over the last 10 days

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Latest maps maps showing fire activities (selection)

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Buryatiya Republic Altaisky Krai Chitinskaya Oblast

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Chitinskaya Oblast Kazakhstan Kazakhstan

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Kazakhstan Kazakhstan Kazakhstan

For more details on fire in the Russian Federation:

Bibliography on fire in ecosystems of boreal Eurasia:
One of the results of the first international fire science conference in the Russian Federation (1993) was the publication of a monograph on fire in boreal Eurasia, including some selected contributions on boreal North America. The literature cited in the monograph contains numerous publications which in many cases are not easily accessible. To facilitate literature search the bibliographical sources are provided by topic (chapter).
Goldammer, J.G. and V.V.Furyaev. 1996. Fire in Ecosystems of Boreal Eurasia. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht, 390 p.

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