The team of the National Observatory of Athens (NOA), represented by Dr. Maria Hatzaki, participated in AGU23 annual meeting held in San Francisco–California between 11 and 15 December 2023.
Over 25,000 people from more than 100 countries converge on the American Geophysical Union (AGU) annual meeting each year to exchange research findings and make new connections. Attending AGU23 allows scientists, educators, policymakers, journalists, and communicators to gain a deeper understanding of our planet and environment, pave the way for new discoveries and raise awareness of climate change.
During the conference, the NOA team presented the work performed in the framework of Task 1.2 relevant to high-resolution fire danger seasonal forecasts and long-term projections for selected FIRE-RES living labs. The team has utilized ECMWF SEAS51 seasonal forecasting system hindcasts for the period 1990 to 2016, as well as multi model and multi scenario simulations of CMIP6 up to 2100 available in Copernicus Climate Data Store. These data were statistically downscaled to develop high-resolution fire danger seasonal forecasts and long- term projections for the living labs of Portugal, Catalonia, Sardinia, Peloponnese, Aquitaine, Lower Saxony, North Rhine Westphalia and the Netherlands.
During the presentation the team highlighted that robust FWI (Fire Weather Index) changes are projected for all LLs under the extreme (SSP5-8.5) scenario. Nevertheless, during the 2041-2060 period a class change in the FWI danger is projected only for Catalonia (compared to the reference period) while by the end of the century in the majority of the LLs and FWI class change to worsening conditions is projected.
Concerning fire danger seasonal forecasts, all examined LLs show a positive relationship between the forecast fire danger probability and the observed frequency of occurrence of above-normal fire danger conditions, implying that probabilistic fire danger forecasts could be further exploited by regional authorities in fire management regarding prevention, preparedness, and resources allocation in fire-prone Mediterranean regions.