GloCAB: global cropland burned area from mid-2002 to 2020

Hall, Joanne V.; Argueta, Fernanda; Zubkova, Maria; Chen, Yang; Randerson, James T.; Giglio, Louis

Burned area estimates are an essential component of cropland management systems, inventory-based fire emission calculations, and air quality models, and any inaccuracies in these estimates propagate into the final outputs and decision-making process. While satellite-based global burned area and fire emission datasets (e.g., GFED, FireCCI51, and MCD64A1) are frequently cited in the scientific literature and are employed by a range of users from atmospheric and carbon modelers to policy-makers, they are generally not optimized for cropland burning – a quintessential small-fire type. Here we describe a new dataset (GloCAB; global cropland area burned) which represents the first attempt at a global cropland-focused burned area product. The GloCAB dataset provides global, monthly cropland burned area at 0.25inline-formula spatial resolution from July 2002 to December 2020. Crop-specific burned area conversion factors for several widespread burnable crops (winter wheat, spring wheat, maize, rice, and sugarcane) were calculated from extensively mapped cropland reference regions spanning 191 560 fields over 5 different countries. We found global annual cropland burned area (2003–2020) ranged between 64 Mha (2018) and 102 Mha (2008) with an average of 81 Mha using our lower-bound estimates, which are substantially higher than the annual average of 32 Mha in the MCD64A1 C6 product. Region-specific trend analysis found some areas with significant increasing trends (northwest India), while the heterogeneity of many other regions showed no burned area trends. The GloCAB product is freely accessible at (Hall et al., 2023).



Hall, Joanne V. / Argueta, Fernanda / Zubkova, Maria / et al: GloCAB: global cropland burned area from mid-2002 to 2020. 2024. Copernicus Publications.


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