Work Package 1: Fuel Mapping – landscape scale to local fuel structure

All existing FDRSs use a fuel map based upon classification of land cover types, either broad or detailed. While some existing classifications might have some applicability to UK conditions, none fully capture the UK’s vegetation and fuel types. Existing land cover maps give broad habitat types, but these datasets lack the detail necessary to estimate fuel loads. Key challenges are: a) assessing the reliability of fuel estimates at the scale necessary for the UK’s complex mosaic, b) understanding the role of different fuel structures and c) developing a workflow to create a dynamic fuel map to capture seasonal and other land cover changes that will determine risk.

Key research questions:

RQ1.1: What is the spatial distribution of vegetation fuel-loads across the UK (and how can it be derived from existing spatial and other data sets)?

RQ1.2: How does the fuel change with seasons and land cover management and how can Earth Observation be used to generate a dynamic fuel map?

Planned deliverables:

D1.1: Static UK vegetation fuel map based upon Land Cover Map 2015 broad habitat classes. Refined biomass and fuel estimates will be derived from existing inventories and informed by EO data.

D1.2: Remotely sensed dynamic fuel maps for the Peak District National Park using satellite optical and SAR datasets.

Key organisations and team members: University of Manchester (GC, GM-C), Forest Research (JM)