The risk of wildfire is projected to increase across the region, espeically in the summer, and the duration of the fire season is expected to increase.

    Submitted by dshannon on Mon, 08/10/2020 - 14:14

    Different modeling approaches generally conclude that future climate conditions will increase the risk of wildfire across the Great Plains. In the Southern Great Plains, increased wildfire activity is linked to periods of abundant precipitation followed by high temperatures and drought. Annual fire probability, calculated solely with climate data and physical principles, is projected to increase by 20% to 1200% across the region by the end of the century. Fire probability may decrease in Texas, however. The incidence of atmospheric conditions that contribute to large and erratic fire behavior, measured by the Haines Index, is also projected to occur more frequently (2 to 11 percent increase) by the end of the century. The limitation for these sorts of projections is that they do not account for changes in land use, fire suppression rates, or vegetation changes.