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Project Information

ACRP3 – FIRIA – Fire Risk and Vulnerability of Austrian Forests under the Impact of Climate Change

Global warming will lead to an increase in drought stress in forested ecosystems, which will thereby increase the risk of wildfires. Among other consequences, this can significantly influence and reduce the protective functions of forests, thereby altering the disposition to gravitational natural hazards. Changes in frequency and magnitude are likely.

On the basis of a wildfire database, it was possible to first identify areas at risk of forest fires; this data was then combined with information on current and future climate conditions. Subsequently, potential hotspots for wildfires were identified, and it was investigated whether and to what extent these deforested areas might contribute to an increased hazard potential for avalanches and rock falls. Additional numerical modelling exercises were conducted for particularly exposed areas, and comprehensive vulnerability and risk analyses were realized for these locations as well.

Project Team

Project Team FIRIA

Dr. Matthias Huttenlau

Dr. Rudolf Sailer

Korbinian Schmidtner, BSc.

Miriam Weber


Project Partners

University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna
Department of Landscape, Spatial and Infrastructure Sciences
Institute of Landscape Development, Recreation and Conservation Planning
Contact: Prof. Dr. Harald Vacik

University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna
Department of Water - Atmosphere - Environment
Institute of Meteorology
Contact: Dr. Herbert Formayer


Project Coordination

University of Graz
Department of Geography and Regional Sciences
Contact: Dr. Oliver Sass