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South African Journal of Geomatics

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Review of the use of remote sensing for monitoring wildfire risk conditions to support fire risk assessment in protected areas

Olga Dipuo Molaudzi, Samuel Adewale Adelabu

Abstract


Fire risk assessment is one of the most important components in the management of fire that offers the framework for monitoring fire risk conditions. Whilst monitoring fire risk conditions commonly revolved around field data, Remote Sensing (RS) plays key role in quantifying and monitoring fire risk indicators. This study presents a review of remote sensing data and techniques for fire risk monitoring and assessment with a particular emphasis on its implications for wildfire risk mapping in protected areas. Firstly, we concentrate on RS derived variables employed to monitor fire risk conditions for fire risk assessment. Thereafter, an evaluation of the prominent RS platforms such as Broadband, Hyperspectral and Active sensors that have been utilized for wildfire risk assessment. Furthermore, we demonstrate the effectiveness in obtaining information that has operational use or immediate potentials for operational application in protected areas (PAs). RS techniques that involve extraction of landscape information from imagery were summarised. The review concludes that in practice, fire risk assessment that consider all variables/indicators that influence fire risk is impossible to establish, however it is imperative to incorporate indicators or variables of very high heterogeneous and “multi-sensoral or multivariate fire risk index approach for fire risk assessment in PA.

Keywords: Protected Areas, Fire Risk conditions; Remote Sensing, Wildfire risk assessment




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