BEGIN seminar – Ms Morgan Crowley
Date: 19 January 2021
Venue: The link for the event will be sent on the morning of the 19th those that RSVP
Please RSVP at firstname.lastname@example.org until Mon 18th of January to receive the link.
Mapping and analyzing Canadian wildfires in Google Earth Engine
Each year, fire seasons in forested Canada are becoming increasingly variable due to the changing climate. Earth observation data is a useful way to map these unpredictable fires as they grow across the country’s vast, fire-prone regions. However, single-date and single-sourced imagery of active fires often contain clouds, flares, smoke, and haze, creating inconsistencies when evaluating burned areas over time. In my research, I apply rapid and scalable methods to synthesize information on fire progressions using freely available satellite imagery, novel image fusion algorithms, and cloud-based data processing platforms to improve upon existing fire mapping techniques. Building upon a small prototype for one 2017 fire, I applied these data fusion methods for fire progression mapping using Landsat-7, -8, Sentinel-2, and MODIS (MCD64A1 burned-area dataset) for the 2017 and 2018 British Columbia fire seasons. Using these outputs, I calculated within-year, intra-annual fire progression metrics to compare satellite-derived fire behaviours between the 2017 and 2018 fire seasons, both at the whole fire season and the individual fire level. The ultimate target of this research is to reconstruct historic wildfire progressions, cross-validate fire behaviour models, and compare fire progression metrics between historic fires and fire seasons in Canada. These methods can provide information about active wildland fire progressions to improve our understanding of fire growth and associated drivers over space and time.
Morgan Crowley is a Ph.D. Candidate at McGill University in the Department of Natural Resources. In her research, she fuses classifications from multiple satellite sensors to map and analyze wildfire progressions and burned areas in Canada. All of her research is done in Google Earth Engine in collaboration with the Canadian Forest Service. Outside of her research, Morgan enjoys facilitating the Ladies of Landsat organization and spending time with her dog, Athena.