Southeast Asian Fire Regimes and Land Development Policy.

TitleSoutheast Asian Fire Regimes and Land Development Policy.
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2007
AuthorsMurdiyarso D, Lebel L
Book TitleTerrestrial Ecosystems in a Changing World
Pagination 261-271
KeywordsASB, fire regimes, Southeast Asian, Underlying Causes of Land Fires
AbstractFires have long been an important tool for land development and management in tropical Southeast Asia. Fire disturbance regimes vary with forest structure, climate, topography and soils. These regimes have influenced, and been influenced by, the land-use systems of diverse cultures over centuries and millennia, producing diverse histories of fire and landscape dynamics. Low and moderate intensity fires are a regular event in the seasonally dry deciduous or savannah forests of Southeast Asia. These forests contain fire-adapted species and are frequently settled and used by swidden – cultivators. In contrast, fires in the moister evergreen forests of the humid tropics are much more irregular and typically associated with unusual events, for example droughts caused by dry phases of the El Niño – Southern Oscillation (ENSO). In the last 50–100 years the rate and extent of change in landscapes and disturbance regimes has increased substantially as societies throughout Southeast Asia have successfully grown in size, expanded and intensified the agricultural and forestry foundations of their economies, and adopted new management strategies to fire.