Webinar materials for cross-border monitoring and forecasting of forest fires and biodiversity losses

Submitted by KA5051 on
webinar II

Biokarelia CBC project webinar titled “cross-border monitoring and forecasting of forest fires and biodiversity losses” took place yesterday the 26.5.2021.  The event brought together 52 participants from 8 different countries.

The webinar consisted findings of Biokarelia project as well as other similar projects working within the framework of forest fires, climate change, and biodiversity. The Keynote presentation was given by representative of Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) Tuomo Bergman. Tuomo gave an overview of FMI forest fire related research, how forecasting is done in Finland, and what forecasting tools and methods are used currently. He also brought up challenges that snow cover impose on indexes and their plans for improving forecasting work. Tuomo Puumalainen from Arbonaut Oy presented the MAST project where the idea is to demonstrate power of fire simulation engine, remote sensing data and modern GIS tools for wildfire situational picture and response. He also showed a fire simulation based on Finnish data with Prometheus, a deterministic wildland fire growth simulation model. ProMS, the host system for the data, also includes data layers realized under Biokarelia project. 

After the break, Per Angelstam presented interesting perspectives about forest fires, current narratives, approaches, biases, and learnings for disturbance-based forest management. He also raised the need for natural science to understand ecosystems whereas the social sciences are needed to understand landscape governance. This was followed by Tiina Ylioja’s presentation on connection between bark beetle, climate change and forest fires. The presentations strengthen the presentation from previous webinar by North Karelia Biosphere Reserve on why a network of biodiversity actors is important when considering the interlinkages between Forest fires, climate change and biodiversity issues.

Questions such as noticed difference in the spread of fires in different types of forests in the presented simulation, availability of statistics of forest fires in Russian Karelia and the map showing the cases in the cross-border zone during the past ten years were few but relevant questions. The availability of online tools for the rescue services on Russian side when detailed base data is missing was also a discussion topic. Prometheus was considered one possible tool even with a limited data. How forest fires and pest attacks in so-called 'intact forest landscapes' are treated in European or North American legislation, and if the treatment differs from that of protected areas was also a question that was discussed.

The Biokarelia project lead partner then finalized the event. More elaborate forecasting methods, tools for remote assessment and new approaches to balance conflicting goals are needed and drones, cloud services and algorithms were seen as opportunities. The webinar was moderated by Timo J. Hokkanen and presentations and videos are now available as follows: 

Link to recordings of  the presentations:

On North Karelia Biosphere Reserve YouTube page  (Recordings of this webinar start with the videos with Webinar 2 in their title in the playlist.)

Presentations as documents (pdfs):

Keynote: FMI´s forest fire services - Tuomo Bergman, FMI

Fire simulation example in North Karelia based on Finnish data- Tuomo Puumalainen, Arbonaut Oy

Intact Forest Landscapes: in-situ conservation and learning for disturbance-based forest management- Per Angelstam, SLU

The role of forest pests and diseases in expected future changes- Tiina Ylioja, LUKE

Needs and opportunities for cross-border monitoring of forest fires and biodiversity-Eugene Lopatin, LUKE


The materials from previous webinar are also still available. See the links to the presentations in: https://kareliacbc.fi/en/first-webinar-biokarelia-project-success-materials-available You may also see the recordings of this earlier webinar "Connectivity of high conservation value forests along Finnish- Russian borders" in the Youtube channel.