5th Symposium on Fire and Forest Meteorology and the 2nd International Wildland Fire Ecology and Fire Management Congress

Tuesday, 18 November 2003: 1:45 PM
Michael G. Barna, CIRA/Colorado State Univ., Fort Collins, CO; and D. G. Fox
Poster PDF (171.9 kB)
This paper presents preliminary results of an effort to assess impacts caused by forest fires on regional air quality and visibility. Regional air quality is the result of many, many different sources of air pollution being transported, dispersed, chemically transformed, wet and dry deposited. Simulation of all the processes involved requires a complex model that is as dependent on detailed emissions data and correct meteorological fields as it is on dispersion, chemical transformation, and removal process parameterizations.

Obtaining detailed and correct emissions data from forest fires for application in regional air quality simulations is especially difficult. The regional nature of the problem lends complexity in that hourly emissions are required for an extended period of time, up to a year, covering a large regional scale, such as the western United States. In this paper we present the first results from a newly developed Community Smoke Emissions Model (CSEM). The model, based on linking mesoscale meteorological information with existing USDA Forest Service tools (the National Fire Danger Rating System and the models CONSUME and EPM) will be described. CSEM will be applied to generate emissions from wildfires for July and August 1996 for the western United States. These fire emissions data, aggregated to a 36 km resolution grid will form the forest fire input to the REMSAD, Regional Modeling System for Aerosols and Deposition (REMSAD) (ICF Consulting, 2002; http://www.remsad.saintl.com). Regional simulations using REMSAD, with and without simulated fire emissions will be compared with air quality data from the national IMPROVE network (http://vista.cira.colostate.edu/VIEWS).

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