A Combined Approach of Remote Sensing, GIS, and Social Media to Create and Disseminate Bushfire Warning Contents to Rural Australia

Perera, Kithsiri and Tateishi, Ryutaro and Akihiko, Kondho and Herath, Srikantha (2021) A Combined Approach of Remote Sensing, GIS, and Social Media to Create and Disseminate Bushfire Warning Contents to Rural Australia. Earth, 2 (4). pp. 715-730.

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Bushfires are an integral part of the forest regeneration cycle in Australia. However, from the perspective of a natural disaster, the impact of bushfires on human settlements and the environment is massive. In Australia, bushfires are the most disastrous natural hazards. According to the records of the Parliament of Australia, the recent catastrophic bushfires in NSW and Victoria burnt out over 10 million hectares of land, a figure more significant than any previous bushfire damage on record. After the deadly 2009 Black Saturday bushfires, which killed 173 people in Victoria, public attention to bushfires reached a new peak. Due to the disastrous consequences of bushfires, scientists have explored various methods to mitigate or even avoid bushfire damage, including the use of bushfire alerts. The present study adds satellite imagery and GIS-based semi-real-time bushfire contents to various bushfire warnings issued by government authorities. The new product will disseminate graphical bushfire contents to rural Australians through social media, using Google Maps. This low-cost Media GIS content can be delivered through highly popular smartphone networks in Australia through social media (Facebook and Twitter). We expect its success to encourage people to participate in disaster mitigation efforts as contributors in a participatory GIS network. This paper presents a case study to demonstrate the production process and the quality of media GIS content and further discusses the potential of using social media through the mobile network of Australia while paying attention to mobile blackspots. Media GIS content has the potential to link with the public information systems of local fire management services, disseminate contents through a mobile app, and develop into a fully automated media GIS content system to expand the service beyond bushfires.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Copyright: © 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Civil Engineering and Surveying (1 Jul 2013 - 31 Dec 2021)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Institute for Life Sciences and the Environment - Centre for Applied Climate Sciences (1 Aug 2018 -)
Date Deposited: 30 Nov 2021 02:07
Last Modified: 01 Dec 2021 23:21
Uncontrolled Keywords: bushfire; rural communities; MODIS; social media; participatory GIS (PGIS)
Fields of Research (2008): 04 Earth Sciences > 0499 Other Earth Sciences > 049999 Earth Sciences not elsewhere classified
Fields of Research (2020): 37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3799 Other earth sciences > 379999 Other earth sciences not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): D Environment > 96 Environment > 9610 Natural Hazards > 961099 Natural Hazards not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2020): 18 ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT > 1899 Other environmental management > 189999 Other environmental management not elsewhere classified
Identification Number or DOI: https://doi.org/10.3390/earth2040042
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/44105

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