Amazon Fire Tracker 2020: Brazil #4 (June 17, 2020)

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As presented in MAAP #118, Amazon Conservation launched a real-time fire monitoring app that specializes in detection of elevated aerosol emissions in the smoke coming from burning Amazon fires. As detailed below, the app just detected the fourth major Amazon fire of 2020 on June 17. All four fires thus far have been in the state of Mato Grosso and burning recently deforested areas (see MAAP #113 for background).

Step 1. Detection of elevated emissions in the southeastern Brazilian Amazon (Mato Grosso).

Step 2. Zoom in on the emissions.

Step 3. Adjust the transparency to see the underlying fire alerts that indicate the exact location of the fires. Obtain coordinates of the source of the fires.


Step 4. Check the satellite imagery in Planet Explorer. Here is a high resolution Planet image showing the fire burning on June 17. Also see the slider below, comparing the the June 17 fires with a pre-fire image from June 10.

Imagery source: Planet.

Imagery source: Planet.

Step 5. Using Planet’s extensive imagery archive, we were able to determine that the fires were burning an area deforested in 2019 (and not a forest fire).

Coordinates: -10.45, -53.55

Annex – Fire Alert vs. Aerosol Emission Data

This slider shows us how aerosol emission data allows users to prioritize hundreds (or thousands) of heat-based fire alerts. In other words, the aerosol data indicates just the fires that are  actually burning lots of biomass and putting out abundant smoke.


Gorelick, N., Hancher, M., Dixon, M., Ilyushchenko, S., Thau, D., & Moore, R. (2017). Google Earth Engine: Planetary-scale geospatial analysis for everyone. Remote Sensing of Environment.”
Planet Team (2017). Planet Application Program Interface: In Space for Life on Earth. San Francisco, CA.


This work was supported by the following major funders: USAID/NASA (SERVIR), Global Forest Watch Small Grants Fund (WRI), Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD),  International Conservation Fund of Canada (ICFC), Metabolic Studio, and Erol Foundation.


Finer M, Villa L (2020) Amazon Fire Tracker 2020: Brazil #4 (June 17, 2020). MAAP.

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