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Measuring Risk of Wildfires: Gro’s Fire Weather Index

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As the US Northeast and Northwest deal with smoke pollution from Canadian wildfires, Gro Intelligence will soon be releasing our latest fire management and prediction model: Gro Climate Indicator (GCI): Fire Weather Index.

The Gro Fire Weather Index is designed to assess and analyze factors that contribute to the risk and behavior of wildfires at a global scale. The index uses critical variables — including temperature, humidity, wind, and fuel moisture content — to provide insights into the possible ignition, spread, and intensity of fires, with the aim of enhancing fire-management strategies at the district, province and national levels.

Gro’s objective is to empower fire-management agencies and emergency-response teams with advanced predictive capabilities. While the Gro Fire Weather Index doesn’t predict the likelihood of an ignition event, it effectively identifies areas prone to outbreaks by analyzing conditions conducive to ignition and expresses this risk as a Fire Weather Index (FWI).

Gro’s models point to a year of heightened fire danger as the world enters an El Niño climate event pattern. The graphs below showcase the Fire Weather Index for Alberta and Quebec — two of the Canadian provinces currently experiencing extensive wildfires. The FWI graph reveals peak risk periods typically expected during a fire season. 

For 2023, however, (shown by the blue lines) the magnitude of these peaks relative to the last 40-plus years of data (represented by the purple All-time mean lines) is remarkably high and is reminiscent of the alarming conditions experienced during the 2015 El Niño phase.

Gro Intelligence's GCI: Fire Weather Index aims to provide stakeholders with invaluable insights to effectively allocate resources and mitigate the devastating impact of wildfires.





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