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Trends in Vegetation fires in South and Southeast Asian Countries




  • Vadrevu, Krishna Prasad, Lasko, Kristofer, Giglio, Louis, Schroeder, Wilfrid, Biswas, Sumalika and Justice, Chris


  • We assessed the fire trends from Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) (2003-2016) and Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) (2012-2016) in South/Southeast Asia (S/SEA) at a country level and vegetation types. We also quantified the fire frequencies, anomalies and climate drivers. MODIS data suggested India, Pakistan, Indonesia and Myanmar as having the most fires. Also, the VIIRS-detected fires were higher than MODIS (AQUA and TERRA) by a factor of 7 and 5 in S/SEA. Thirty percent of S/SEA had recurrent fires with the most in Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, and Myanmar. Statistically-significant increasing fire trends were found for India (p = 0.004), Cambodia (p = 0.001), and Vietnam (p = 0.050) whereas Timor Leste (p = 0.004) had a decreasing trend. An increasing trend in fire radiative power (FRP) were found for Cambodia (p = 0.005), India (0.039), and Pakistan (0.06) and declining trend in Afghanistan (0.041). Fire trends from VIIRS were not significant due to limited duration of data. In S/SEA, fires in croplands were equally frequent as in forests, with increasing fires in India, Pakistan, and Vietnam. Specific to climate drivers, precipitation could explain more variations in fires than the temperature with stronger correlations in Southeast Asia than South Asia. Our results on fire statistics including spatial geography, variations, frequencies, anomalies, trends, and climate drivers can be useful for fire management in S/SEA countries.

Published In

Publication Date

  • 2019



Digital Object Identifier (doi)

Additional Document Info


  • 9


  • 7422