Researchers working in the Ilmari Laboratory at the University of Eastern Finland in Kuopio are currently conducting an extensive measurement campaign focusing on emissions from forest fires occurring on savannah and boreal coniferous forests.
“We are exploring particulate and gas emissions from savannah fires in Africa and forest fires in the boreal coniferous forest zone, how those emissions transform in the atmosphere, and how they affect the climate,” says Professor Olli Sippula of the Department of Environmental and Biological Sciences and the Department of Chemistry at the University of Eastern Finland.
“We have several ongoing studies that are part of the EU’S ATMO-ACCESS project and the ACTRIS infrastructure project,” says Professor Annele Virtanen of the Department of Applied Physics at the University of Eastern Finland.
“Our measurement campaigns are highly international: Emissions from forest fires are being measured in cooperation with the Finnish Meteorological Institute, the North-West University in South Africa, and the University of Rostock and Helmholtz Zentrum in Germany.”
The researchers are interested in forest fires due to their effects on both the climate and air quality. As biomass burns, huge amounts of particulate matter and volatile organic compounds, among other things, are released into the air.
“Compared to transport, for example, emissions from forest fires are very high, yet dependent on the location,” Virtanen says.