Decreasing fires in a Mediterranean region (1970–2010, NE Spain) – (Brief communication)

Authors: M. Turco, M. C. Llasat, A. Tudela, X. Castro, and A. Provenzale

Abstract.

We analyse the recent evolution of fires in Catalonia (north-eastern Iberian Peninsula), a typical Mediterranean region. We examine a homogeneous series of forest fires in the period 1970–2010. During this period, more than 9000 fire events greater than 0.5 ha were recorded, and the total burned area was more than 400 kha. Our analysis shows that both the burned area and number of fire series display a decreasing trend. Superposed onto this general decrease, strong oscillations on shorter time scales are evident. After the large fires of 1986 and 1994, the increased effort in fire prevention and suppression could explain part of the decreasing trend. Although it is often stated that fires have increased in Mediterranean regions, the higher efficiency in fire detection could have led to spurious trends and misleading conclusions.

Link: www.nat-hazards-earth-syst-sci.net/13/649/2013/ 

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Proposta de tres variables termodinàmiques per discriminar entre tempestes amb pedregades i tempestes amb pluges intenses.

Autors: C. Farnell i M. C. Llasat

Resum:

Entre finals de primavera i principis de tardor és usual que a Catalunya es desenvolupin tempestes, que, malgrat que usualment produeixen xàfecs intensos de curta durada, també poden donar lloc a temps sever amb calamarsa o pedregades. Si bé aquestes darreres afecten usualment comarques de l’interior i existeixen publicacions per aquest casos, l’anàlisi dels episodis que afecten la costa produint danys en material públic i privat, no està tan desenvolupada. L’objectiu d’aquest estudi és proporcionar m´es indicadors termodin`amics que ajudin a diferenciar les tempestes acompanyades de pedra de les tempestes sense pedra, considerant casos que han afectat diferents regions de Catalunya, i, principalment, zones costaneres. La finalitat és donar més informació per millorar el pronòstic i poder detallar la informació en aquest tipus de situacions. El procediment elaborat ha estat estudiar diversos episodis de pluges fortes i pedregades que van afectar Catalunya durant el període 2003-2009, principalment, a les comarques de Girona, i validar la proposta durant la campanya de final d’estiu i tardor de 2009 així com del 2012. Per cada un d’ells s’han analitzat diverses variables vinculades amb la temperatura, la humitat i el vent a diferents nivells de l’atmosfera alhora que també s’ha tingut present la informació proporcionada pel radiosondatge de Barcelona. D’aquest estudi se’n deriva que la diferència de temperatura entre 500 hPa i 850 hPa, la humitat a capes baixes de l’atmosfera i l’índex LI són bons indicadors per a la detecció de possibles pedregades associades a una tempesta.

Link: http://www.tethys.cat/ca/node/434

Preface: 11th Plinius Conference on Mediterranean Storms

Authors: M.-C. Llasat, G. Boni, R. Deidda, A. Mugnai, and J. Salat

Introduction

The EGU Plinius Conference on Mediterranean Storms was established in 1999 within the framework of the InterdisciplinaryWorking Group on Natural Hazards (IWG-NH) of the former European Geophysical Society (EGS) – since 2002, European Geosciences Union (EGU). Since its advent, the Plinius Conference series has provided a crucial interdisciplinary forum for improving our understanding of hazardous storms over the Mediterranean basin that are capable of producing strong winds, heavy rains, explosive landslides, devastating flash floods and other related extremes. Given the progress both in the understanding of many of the basic scientific aspects of the triggering, growth, maintenance, and physical impacts of Mediterranean storms, as well as in the model prediction concerning storm life cycles and their hazardous impacts, the 11th Plinius Conference encouraged an even greater interdisciplinary participation than in previous editions. This was achieved by continuing to reach out to scientific experts in the fields of meteorology, climatology, hydrology,
and geomorphology, as well as extending the reach into the disciplines of oceanography, sociology, economics, engineering, and the government management sector. Leer más de esta entrada

Floods in the north-western Mediterranean region: presentation of the HYMEX database and comparison with pre-existing global databases

Authors: M. Carmen LLASAT, Montserrat LLASAT-BOTIJA, Olga PETRUCCI, Angela Aurora PASQUA, Joan ROSSELLO, Freddy VINET, Laurent BOISSIER

Abstract:

The contribution presents the database on floods (1981-2010) that is being developed in the framework of HYMEX project and the preliminary results obtained for the NW sector of Mediterranean region. This database contains data on damages and the main hydrometeorological features of each reported event. The study is included in one of the objectives of the Working Group 5, which is a transversal group of the HYMEX project dealing with all the aspects related to societal and ecological impacts of hydrometeorological extremes, as well as their perception and communication processes. One of the main points of the WG5 is the creation of a common database on floods and their societal impact, for the Mediterranean region, as well as its analysis. Although some databases already exist and are frequently consulted, they are mainly focused on “major” catastrophic events. But the Mediterranean region experiences every year a high number of minor flash-floods that, considered in their totality, produce important losses and disruptions of the everyday life. This contribution is focused on North-Eastern Spain, South of Italy and South-East of France and the objective is to include all the floods that have produced damages, although they are not considered as “major” disasters.

Key-words: floods, flash-floods, societal impact, damages, Mediterranean Region.

Link: http://www.shf-lhb.org/articles/lhb/abs/2013/01/lhb2013001/lhb2013001.html

Participació de la Dra. Carme Llasat a la Jornada Parlamentària europea al RECERCAT

El Butlletí electrònic de la recerca a Catalunya RECERCAT de la Generalitat de Catalunya ha publicat una notícia sobre la participació de la Dra. Carme Llasat a la Jornada Parlamentària europea The Changing Mountains of Europe: Water Resources and Ecosystems at Risk, que va tenir lloc l’octubre passat dins del Science Briefing for Policy Makers, organitzada per la European Climate Research Alliance (ECRA) i dirigida a eurodiputats i membres de la Comissió Europea.

Trobareu la informació aquí:

http://www.gencat.cat/economia/ur/butlleti/recercat/web/64822757/64822757_detail_78910437.html

http://www.ecra-climate.eu/