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Title: Precipitation regime classification for the Mojave Desert: Implications for fire occurrence

Mojave Desert ecosystem processes are dependent upon the amount and seasonality of precipitation. Multi-decadal periods of drought or above-average rainfall affect landscape vegetation condition, biomass and susceptibility to fire. The seasonality of precipitation events can also affect the likelihood of lightning, a key ignition source for fires. To develop an understanding of precipitation regimes and fire patterns we used monthly average precipitation data and GIS data representing burned areas from 1971-2010. We applied a K-means cluster analysis to the monthly precipitation data identifying three distinct precipitation seasons; winter (October – March), spring (April-June) and summer (July-September) and four discrete precipitation regimes within the Mojave ecoregion.
Authors:
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Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
1237803
Report Number(s):
PNNL-SA-107574
Journal ID: ISSN 0140-1963; 400403209
DOE Contract Number:
AC05-76RL01830
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Journal of Arid Environments; Journal Volume: 124
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
Precipitation; classification; Mojave Desert