Fire Ecology Research Group

Max Planck Institute for Chemistry

Organizational Arrangements
The Global Fire Monitoring Center (GFMC) has been established in 1998 at the Fire Ecology and Biomass Burning Research Group. The Research Group is a subdivision of the Biogeochemistry Department of the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry (Mainz, Germany). Founded in the 1970s at Freiburg University (Germany) the Fire Ecology Research Group was incorporated into the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in 1990.

Interests in Fundamental Wildland Fire Science: Exploring the role of vegetation fires in the global environment

Since the begin of the 1990s the Biogeochemistry Department (M.O. Andreae) with the Fire Ecology Research Group (J.G. Goldammer) and the Biofuel Burning Research Group (G. Helas), jointly with the Air Chemistry Department (P. Crutzen), have been working together in designing, coordination, organization and implementation of several international fire research campaigns under the umbrella of the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme (IGBP). The Fire Ecology Research Group is co-chair of the scientific steering committee of the vegetation fire science component within the IGBP Core Project International Global Atmospheric Chemistry (IGAC) - the Biomass Burning Experiment (BIBEX) - and is host of the BIBEX Secretariat.

The scientific interests of the Research Groups of the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry are expressed in the numerous scientific publications authored or co-authored by the four scientists.

Science and Technology Transfer
Since the early 1990s the Fire Ecology Research Group has taken a leading role in science and technology transfer to the UN system through its role as coordinating unit of the UN-FAO/ECE/ILO Team of Specialists on Forest Fire. Between 1997 and 2000 the Fire Ecology Research Group acted as convener of the UN International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction (IDNDR) Early Warning Programme Working Group "Fire and Related Environmental Hazards". As a member of the Inter-Agency Task Force for Disaster Reduction of the UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UN-ISDR) the GFMC served as a convener of the Working Group on Wildland Fire between 2001 and 2003. One of the core activities was the establishment of the Global Wildland Fire Network. Based on the achievements of the Working Group the GFMC is currently serving as facilitator of the Global Wildland Fire Network and chair of the newly established Wildland Fire Advisory Group under the auspices of the UN-ISDR.

Current Research Interests of the Fire Ecology Research Group and the GFMC
Besides IGBP-related research the GFMC has been responsible for the implementation of the Cluster "Forest Fire Research" within the German Research Network Natural Disasters (Deutsches Forschungsnetz Naturkatastophen - DFNK) until the end of 2003. The Cluster has developed a prototype of a Forest Fire Management Decision-Support System for the State of Brandenburg (Germany) for which a series of forest fire experiments are conducted. Prescribed burning research and development is conducted and coordinated by the GFMC within the European Fire in Nature Conservation Network (EFNCN). Within the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry the group is cooperating with a number of interdisciplinary research projects.


Location of the Fire Ecology Research Group and GFMC
With the GFMC the Research Group is located in the Old Airport Tower Building at the new Airport Campus of Freiburg University (see maps and navigation aids in Address, communication and location map