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Remote Sensing Webinar | Leveraging Remote Sensing and Geoinformatics: Fire and Related Emissions for Environmental Health

27 Sep 2022, 12:00 (CEST)

Forest Fire, Agriculture and Urban Waste Burning, Assessment of Fire Spread, Related Emissions, Pollutions, Human Health, Atmospheric Loading, Geospatial Technology for Fire Control
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Welcome from the Chair

1st Remote Sensing Webinar

Leveraging Remote Sensing and Geoinformatics: Fire and Related Emissions for Environmental Health

Human civilization has long been using fire to modify land for their benefit and expansionism. The last four decades have seen an unprecedented increase in fire incidences (satellite-monitored locations) across the globe. Wildfires are raging around the world, burning the natural vegetation that produces vital oxygen for the entire planet. Fire monitoring by remote sensing can be achieved using polar-orbiting and geostationary satellites. The polar-orbiting satellites that are used in fire detection and monitoring include MODIS, AVHRR, ASTER and Landsat. The application of these satellites is limited by their temporal resolutions. The remote sensing of wildfires can solve disputes on where a fire started, the spread thereof and the area destroyed, even years after the fire event. With remote sensing, the type of land cover can be determined. Scientists have used satellite data from the Copernicus Sentinel-2 mission, combined with the Sentinel-5P satellite, to detect individual methane emissions from space. Humans are also feeling the impacts of the fires, as air quality decreases in areas near and far from the fire source. In addition to the devastation to habitat, these fires also have an atmospheric impact. Air quality is diminished, and the global climate can be changed because of the particles that are released into the atmosphere when forests burn. Scientific investigations attribute this increase to climate change increasing the number of dry days, the number of heatwaves, and declining residual soil moisture during the summer season (so-called fire seasons). Fire is not only increasing in number (locations) and duration, but also in severity. Some of the social practices, to name only a few (relevant to India), are livestock grazing, "bidi patta" (rural cigarettes) collection, shifting cultivation, hunting, agriculture residue burning, and urban waste burning. Do we need change in the policy for the continuation of social practices? These fires affect the forest ecosystem, species regeneration, loss of biodiversity, soil degradation, black carbon deposits on glaciers (enhancing the rate of glacier melting), and pollution; they also release GHGs into the atmosphere (adding to the effect of global warming) and health hazards. We here invite distinguished scientists to address the issues connected to fire and the resultant emissions against the background of deteriorating environmental health and climate change.

Date: 27 September 2022

Time: 12:00 pm CEST | 6:00 am EDT | 3:30 pm IST | 6:00 pm CST Asia

Webinar ID: 835 8435 7066

Webinar Secretariat:


World Resources Institute India, New Delhi, Delhi, India

Parth Sarathi Roy is at WRI India as a Senior Fellow presently. He was Senior Advisor International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-arid Tropics (ICRISAT) during 2018-2020. Post superannuation in 2012 from Indian Institute of Remote Sensing (ISRO), he joined the Centre for Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Hyderabad as a Chair Professor during 2012-2018 and continues to be a Visiting Fellow staying true to his purpose of participating teaching and mentoring post graduate student. Dr. Roy is an Earth Observation and Spatial Ecology expert who has pioneered generation of information on natural resources and services using Earth Observation Systems for both India and global programs, inspiring many young scientists of this era. With a glorious career spanning over 45 years, Dr. Roy served the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) for 35 years and retired as the Director of Indian Institute of Remote Sensing and Director of Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in Asia and the Pacific (CESSTEP – United Nations). His contributions have been instrumental in shaping national policies in the field of forestry, biodiversity, conservation science and landscape ecology. Even with an extensive administrative career, his passion for academics and research led him to publish over ~400 research articles in prominent international journals. He has authored four books and guided 27 doctoral researchers. Dr. Roy was first recognized as a promising young scientist back in the year 1983 when he successfully led India’s first ever forest cover mapping and monitoring. From then on, there was no looking back – He initiated and led the National Natural Resource Census (NRC) during 2005-2011 that generated geospatial information on geomorphology, wetland, snow and glaciers, soil type, land degradation, forest cover and land use and land cover maps. […]

Invited Speakers

The Geospatial Center, Delta State University, Cleveland, MS, USA

Talbot Brooks is a Professor of the Practice and Director of The Geospatial Center at Delta State University. He also serves the Director of the UN-SPIDER North America Office. In addition to 24 years of experience in the GEOINT domain, Professor Brooks has 34 years of experience as an emergency responder and is the author of “GIS for Critical Infrastructure Protection”.

United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs, Austria

Dr. Shirish Ravan works for the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs in Vienna, Austria, the UN Office dedicated to global space governance and peaceful uses of outer space. He coordinates activities of the United Nations Platform for Space-based Information for Disaster Management and Emergency Response (UN-SPIDER) which works with a network of 26 regional support offices across all continents and his work focuses primarily on Asia and the Pacific. He has extensively worked with the countries in Asia, the Pacific and Africa to offer advocacy, technical advisory services, and the capacity to use space-based technologies for strengthening disaster and climate resilience. He is involved in diverse initiatives of the Office to help all countries, especially developing countries, to access and leverage the benefits of space to accelerate sustainable development. He has also led the Illicit Crop Monitoring Program of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime in Afghanistan. Before joining the United Nations in 2004, he implemented large-scale research and operational programs involving applications of satellite remote sensing and geospatial technologies as a part of his assignments in the Indian Space Research Organization, Centre for Development of Advanced Computing and other reputed institutions in India. He holds a bachelor's degree in Agricultural Science, a Master's in Environmental Sciences and PhD in Remote Sensing Applications in Forest Ecology and authored over 50 publications.

Research Center for Remote Sensing, National Research and Innovation Agency of Indonesia (BRIN), Indonesia

Parwati has been working for about 20 years as a researcher in Remote Sensing Applications Center of Indonesian National Institute of Aeronautics and Space, (LAPAN) previously, which was reformed into National Research and Innovation Agency (BRIN) since 2021. She received her Ph.D in Environmental Science from University of South Australia in June 2021. Her master’s degree was obtained from the international school of Beijing Aeronautics and Astronautics University (BUAA) majored in Remote Sensing and GIS applications. Her Ph.D research was about Mapping Tropical Peatland Combustion from Satellite Remote Sensing. Some of her past international achievements were: 1) the Highly Commended Paper Award in 2019 from Natural Built Environment (NBE) Research Center, University of South Australia (UniSA) for the paper published in Remote Sensing MDPI titled Detection and Validation of Tropical Peatland Flaming and Smoldering Using Landsat-8 SWIR and TIRS Bands, 2) the first winner for the 2019 final year higher degree by research - 5MT presentation in School of NBE, UniSA, and 3) William T. Pecora Award on Project Manager Group for the event activation support provided to the International Charter Space and Major Disasters in 2017. She has experienced as a guest lecture on the topic of “Space Based Fire Detection and Monitoring” for the undergraduate course GEOE 2022 – Environmental Remote Sensing at the University of South Australia. Her main research interest is on satellite remote sensing data applications for peatland/forest fires, drought/flood, volcano eruption and environments monitoring.

Department of Geo-Risks and Civil Security, German Aerospace Center (DLR), Germany

Dr. Michael Nolde is a researcher at the German Aerospace Center (DLR). He is focussed on the analysis of wildfire events using satellite data. He received his PhD at Kiel University / Germany in 2013, titled "Development of a web-based Fire Danger Forecasting System for Mediterranean Landscapes". Later, he held a PostDoc position at the Centro Euro-Mediteraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici in Lecce / Italy. At his current position, he is concerned with the automated extraction of crisis-related information from satellite data. Specifically, he is responsible for a continental scale wildfire monitoring service, which provides burnt area information of ongoing wildfire events for the region of Europe in near real-time.

Webinar Content

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Time in CEST

Prof. Dr. Parth Sarathi Roy

Chair Introduction

12:00 - 12:10 pm

Prof. Dr. Talbot Brooks

Geospatial Tools for Emergency Service Risk Modelling

12:10 - 12:30 pm

Dr. Shirish Ravan

Space Technologies to Monitor Risks From Fire and Related Emissions, Issue Early Warning and Plan Rapid Response

12:30 - 12:50 pm

Dr. Parwati Sofan

Tropical Peatland Fires Detection From Satellite Remote Sensing

12:50 - 1:10 pm

Dr. Michael Nolde

German Remote Sensing Data Center (DLR)

1:10 - 1:30 pm

Q&A Session

1:30 - 1:50 pm

Closing of Webinar
Prof. Dr. Parth Sarathi Roy

1:50 - 2:00 pm

Relevant SI

Remote Sensing of Post-fire Environmental Damage and Forest Recovery: New Challenges and Approaches
Guest Editors: Dr. Alfonso Fernández-Manso & Dr. Carmen Quintano
Deadline for manuscript submissions: 20 November 2022

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