Natural Hazards

, Volume 85, Issue 3, pp 1393–1416 | Cite as

Assessing the impact of climatic parameters and their inter-annual seasonal variability on fire activity using time series satellite products in South China (2001–2014)

  • Zeeshan Shirazi
  • Huadong Guo
  • Fang ChenEmail author
  • Bo Yu
  • Bin Li
Original Paper


China has a serious wildfire problem with a large number of fires in the south of the country especially during the winter (DJF) and spring (MAM) seasons. This study focused on identifying the causes of variability in inter-annual fire seasons. The relationship between fires and climatic parameters (precipitation, evapotranspiration and potential evapotranspiration) was evaluated on annual and seasonal (winter, spring) time scales. Certain other parameters (moisture balance, surface moisture balance, coefficient of variability of daily precipitation and ratio between evapotranspiration and potential evapotranspiration) were also calculated and related to fire variability for both time scales. Inter-annual time scale was found not to be strong enough to explain fire activity in the region; however, inter-seasonal fire variability showed significant correlation with potential evapotranspiration and with the ratio between evapotranspiration and potential evapotranspiration. The relationship and relative variability between evapotranspiration and the potential evapotranspiration were found to have important effect on inter-seasonal fire variability as compared to the other parameters studied, and link fire activity in the region to large-scale climatic systems.


Wildfires Fire hazard Time series TRMM MODIS Climate 



This work has been supported by the Comparative Study on Global Environmental Change Using Remote Sensing Technology (41120114001), the National Natural Science Foundation of Major International (regional) Collaborative Research Project, the Hundred Talents Program of Chinese Academy of Sciences (Y34004101A) and Chinese Academy of Sciences-World Academy of Sciences (CAS-TWAS) President’s Fellowship Program for developing countries.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Zeeshan Shirazi
    • 1
    • 3
  • Huadong Guo
    • 1
    • 2
  • Fang Chen
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Bo Yu
    • 1
  • Bin Li
    • 1
  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Digital Earth Science, Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital EarthChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  2. 2.Hainan Key Laboratory of Earth Observation, Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital EarthChinese Academy of SciencesSanyaChina
  3. 3.University of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina

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