SERDP Biomass Emission Factor Database
Prescribed fire is a significant emissions source in the U.S. and that needs to be adequately characterized in atmospheric transport/chemistry models. In addition, the Clean Air Act, its amendments, and air quality regulations require that prescribed fire managers estimate the quantity of emissions that a prescribed fire will produce. Several published papers contain a few emission factors for prescribed fire and additional results are found in unpublished documents whose quality has to be assessed. In conjunction with three research projects developing detailed new emissions data and meteorological tools to assist prescribed fire managers, the Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP) is supporting development of a database that contains emissions information related to prescribed burning. This database will be available on the Internet and will contain older emissions information that has been assessed and newer emissions information that has been developed from both laboratory-scale and field measurements. The database currently contains emissions information from over 300 burns of different wildland vegetation types, including grasslands, shrublands, woodlands, forests, and tundra over much of North America.
The Biomass Emission Factor Database (BEFD) was initially created as a tool for fire emissions research, by compiling data from three Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program projects. The objective of the research was to develop emissions prediction and meteorological products to assist prescribed fire managers. Recognizing the importance of a readily portable database, the Resource Conservation and Climate Change Program Area of the Department of Defense Strategic Environmental Research and Development provided new funding to develop the BEFD. It is designed to help researchers as well as various government agencies find established biomass burning emission factors and determine what is needed for future research. Included are integral parameters, such as fuel and weather information. Emission factors, and associated data from various published papers, reports, and from Forest Service archives were compiled and integrated into this useful database.
About the SERDP Database Spreadsheet
The BEFD is designed to be a simple searchable table.
The supporting literature used to populate the BEFD is available through the FRAMES Resource Cataloging System (RCS) or by request.
Parameters for emission factors: Measurement Type - Lab v. Field (Air v. Ground), Location, FS Region, State, Latitude, Longitude, Instrumentation, Fuel Type, Rate of Fire Spread, Years Since Last Burn, Mechanical Harvest, Measurement of Test Area, Carbon (%) & Nitrogen content (%) of Fuel, Fuel Consumption, Fuel Moisture Content, Weather at Burn) *Note not all parameters are available for every dataset.
Emission Factors: Combustion Efficiency, Modified Combustion Efficiency, Carbon Dioxide, Carbon Monoxide, Methane, Acetylene (Ethyne), Ethene, Glycolaldehyde, Propene, Propane, Propyne, Acrolein, Butadiene, Benzene, Phenol vapor, Non-Methane Hydrocarbon, Methanol vapor, methyl chloride, Formic Acid vapor, Acetic Acid vapor, Formaldehyde vapor, Furan vapor, Water Vapor, Ammonia, Nitric Oxide, Nitrous Oxide, Nitrogen Dioxide, Total NOx, Nitrous Acid vapor, Hydrogen Cyanide vapor, Hydrogen Chloride, Sulfur Dioxide, Ozone, Dicloridefluoromethane, Graphitic Carbon, Trisodium Phosphate , Carbonyl Sulfide, Tetrahydrocannabinol, Total Particulate matter, Particulate Matter (2um, 2.5um, 3um, 3.5um, 10um, 48um, Elemental-Carbon to Total-Carbon, Elemental-Carbon to Organic-Carbon), Acetol, 2 Cyclopenten 1-one, 3-furldehyde, 3- oxobutanoic acid, methyl ester, 2- furnmethanol , y-butyrolactone, (5H)-furanone, 2-acetylfuran, 5-Methyl-2-furaldehyde, phenol, o-hydroxybenzaldehyde, 2-methylkphenol (o-cresol), 3 and/or Methylphenol (m/p-cresol), 2-methoxyphenol (guaiacol), benzoic acid, 2-methoxy-4-methylphenol, 2-methoxy-4-(1-prop-2-enyl)phenol (eugenol), 4- hydroxy-3-methoxy-benzaldehyde (vanillin), vinyl acetate, pyruvic aldehyde, acetic acid, formic acid, propanoic acid, crotonic acid, methanol, butyric acid, hexamethlenetetraamine, pyridine, benzonitrile *Note units are g/kg unless noted otherwise.
Flaming/Smoldering Emissions Factors: Combustion Efficiency, Carbon Dioxide, Carbon Monoxide, Methane, Non-Methane Hydrocarbon, Graphitic Carbon, Trisodium Phosphate, Total Particulate matter, Particulate Matter (2.5um, 10um)
We gratefully acknowledge funding for this project from the Resource Conservation and Climate Change Program Area of the Department of Defense Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program under the Resource Conservation projects SERDP RC-1647, 1648 and 1649.