Applied Spatial Analysis and Policy

, Volume 12, Issue 4, pp 773–795 | Cite as

Geospatial Patterns and Drivers of Forest Fire Occurrence in Romania

  • Giorgos MallinisEmail author
  • Marius Petrila
  • Ioannis Mitsopoulos
  • Adrian Lorenţ
  • Ştefan Neagu
  • Bogdan Apostol
  • Vladimir Gancz
  • Ionel Popa
  • Johann Georg Goldammer


Timely and accurate spatial explicit forest fire risk assessment and mapping is essential for forest fire prevention and suppression preparedness, firefighting resources allocation, and efficient multi-level fire management policies. This paper describes the application and validation of an approach for forest fire risk analysis and fire risk zoning over Romania in order to identify areas at national scale where fires are most likely to occur and to threat existing values, resources and assets. A modeling approach based on logistic regression using historical fire observations has been developed based on environmental, socio-economic and demographic data availability at national scale. Ignitions were positively related to south-western slopes and occurred mostly in fuel type of xerophyte oaks as well as in areas of heterogeneous (natural/agricultural) landscape. In addition to the human variables the pattern of ignitions was also significantly related to slope and temperature of the driest quarter. The risk zones produced by the multiple logistic regression model presented satisfactory accuracy when compared with historical fire perimeters extracted from MODIS imagery. The findings of this study could be used by fire managers to implement prevention measures at forest areas with high fire risk. Furthermore, attention should be given to areas with high fire ignition probability, where the vulnerability and potential impact is higher.


Forest fires Landscape management Risk Natural disasters GIS 



This work was supported by the Romanian Civil Protection Authority (Inspectoratul General pentru Situaţii de Urgenţă) within the framework of DISASTER RISK ASSESSMENT AT NATIONAL LEVEL (RO-RISK)” project. The MODIS data product was retrieved from the online Data Pool, courtesy of the NASA Land Processes Distributed Active Archive Center (LP DAAC), USGS/Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center, Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Special thanks are owed to two anonymous reviewers for their insightful advice and suggestions.


This work was supported by the Romanian Civil Protection Authority (Inspectoratul General pentru Situaţii de Urgenţă) within the framework of DISASTER RISK ASSESSMENT AT NATIONAL LEVEL (RO-RISK)” project.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Giorgos Mallinis
    • 1
    Email author
  • Marius Petrila
    • 2
  • Ioannis Mitsopoulos
    • 3
    • 4
  • Adrian Lorenţ
    • 2
    • 5
  • Ştefan Neagu
    • 2
  • Bogdan Apostol
    • 2
  • Vladimir Gancz
    • 2
  • Ionel Popa
    • 2
  • Johann Georg Goldammer
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Forestry and Management of the Environment and Natural ResourcesDemocritus University of ThraceOrestiadaGreece
  2. 2.National Institute for Research and Development in Forestry (INCDS) “Marin Drăcea”VoluntariRomania
  3. 3.Global Fire Monitoring Center (GFMC)FreiburgGermany
  4. 4.Department of Biodiversity and Protected AreasMinistry of Environment and EnergyAthensGreece
  5. 5.Faculty of Silviculture and Forest EngineeringTransilvania University of BraşovBraşovRomania

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