Patterns and trends in wildfire activity in the US from 1984-2015

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This study shows that simultaneous wildfire is at least as correlated with preparedness levels as other burned area measures and identify changes in simultaneous wildfire occurrence within the western and southern United States. Seasonal variation and spatial autocorrelation in simultaneous wildfire occurrence provide evidence of coupling of wildfire activity in portions of the western United States. Best-approximating models of simultaneity suggest that high levels of simultaneous wildfire often coincided with low fuel moisture and high levels of lightning occurrence. Model uncertainty was high in some contexts but, with only a few exceptions, there was strong evidence that the best model should include both a dryness and lightning indicator.

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