Access

You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:

login

Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

If You Use a Screen Reader

This content is available through Read Online (Free) program, which relies on page scans. Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.

Climate and Wildfires in the North American Boreal Forest

Marc Macias Fauria and E. A. Johnson
Philosophical Transactions: Biological Sciences
Vol. 363, No. 1501, The Boreal Forest and Global Change (Jul. 12, 2008), pp. 2317-2329
Published by: Royal Society
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20208640
Page Count: 13
  • Read Online (Free)
  • Cite this Item
Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Climate and Wildfires in the North American Boreal Forest
Preview not available

Abstract

The area burned in the North American boreal forest is controlled by the frequency of mid-tropospheric blocking highs that cause rapid fuel drying. Climate controls the area burned through changing the dynamics of large-scale teleconnection patterns (Pacific Decadal Oscillation/El Niño Southern Oscillation and Arctic Oscillation, PDO/ENSO and AO) that control the frequency of blocking highs over the continent at different time scales. Changes in these teleconnections may be caused by the current global warming. Thus, an increase in temperature alone need not be associated with an increase in area burned in the North American boreal forest. Since the end of the Little Ice Age, the climate has been unusually moist and variable: large fire years have occurred in unusual years, fire frequency has decreased and fire-climate relationships have occurred at interannual to decadal time scales. Prolonged and severe droughts were common in the past and were partly associated with changes in the PDO/ENSO system. Under these conditions, large fire years become common, fire frequency increases and fire-climate relationships occur at decadal to centennial time scales. A suggested return to the drier climate regimes of the past would imply major changes in the temporal dynamics of fire-climate relationships and in area burned, a reduction in the mean age of the forest, and changes in species composition of the North American boreal forest.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
2317
    2317
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2318
    2318
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2319
    2319
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2320
    2320
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2321
    2321
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2322
    2322
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2323
    2323
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2324
    2324
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2325
    2325
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2326
    2326
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2327
    2327
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2328
    2328
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2329
    2329