FIRES IN BRAZIL
In 2021, several fire alerts were registered inside Roncador’s farm boundaries and riparian areas. Of particular significance was a fire inside Roncador’s farm in September 2021 caused by lighting in a dry pasture area. The fire has been estimated to have affected some 200 hectares of forest. Roncador identified the fires through its fire alerts* and monitoring systems. Operations to extinguish the fires were largely driven by the company itself through its own fire brigade and staff, using planes, drones, and by foot. Over one hundred employees were ultimately needed to fight the fire, which was extinguished five days later.
Fire activity in Mato Grosso, as in other areas of Brazil, is influenced by several factors: from climatic conditions (the typical dry season in Mato Grosso is from May to September) to land use change (conversion of forest to agriculture). Fires can be a consequence of natural causes, lightning being the most common, or human actions, usually associated to bad land management practices, such as burning for land clearing, increasing soil fertility or reducing pests. Fires impact largely depends on the access, logistics and management capacity of local parties. Roncador has excellent fire management capabilities and allocated resources to put out fires but, as the past year has showed, fires remain a menace to the land.
Using our own technology, the &Green investment team was able to identify the fires on the same day as Roncador (i.e. immediately). &Green has access to daily high-resolution satellite imagery** and forest loss alerts**, which gives the possibility to track fire evolution and burned area at greater detail, allowing us and our clients to closely monitor deforestation events. Following the incident, &Green facilitated a GIS-focused workshop with Roncador to share tools and these best practices as to support their own capacity.
*Developed by the GLAD (Global Land Analysis and Discovery) lab at the University of Maryland. GLAD-S2 alerts utilize data from the European Space Agency’s Sentinel-2 mission, which provides optical imagery at a 10m spatial resolution with a 5-day revisit time.
** Images provided by the NICFI-KSAT Satellite Data Program Level 2 Access
***Imagery from MODIS Global Fires, a product of NASA’s Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS), part of NASA’s Earth Science Data; and VIIRS Thermal Hotspots and Fire Activity, a product of NASA’s Land, Atmosphere Near real-time Capability for EOS (LANCE) Earth Observation Data, part of NASA’s Earth Science Data.
HIGH-RESOLUTION SATELLITE IMAGES ALLOWED &GREEN TO TRACK HOW THE FIRE EVOLVED ON RONCADOR’S FARM LAST SEPTEMBER: