Each data file contains 1440 columns and 720 rows, and has a 0.25 degree latitude by a 0.25 degree longitude spatial resolution. Data is available from 1997 through the present. The data is divided into 3 main datasets.

  1. Burned area
  2. Monthly emissions and fractional contributions of different fire types
  3. Daily / 3-hourly fields to scale the monthly emissions to higher temporal resolutions

Please be aware of the differences between GFED4 (without small fires) and GFED4s (with small fires). The mapped burned area is without small fires, this is the GFED4 burned area described in Giglio et al. (2013) and distributed via the UMD server as described below. The emissions fields are based on this dataset but boosted with small fires, GFED4s. If you are interested in the effect of this boost, the emissions fields also contain a layer with the fraction of emissions resulting from this boost.

The GFED4 burned area data set provides global, monthly burned area from 1997 through the present (as well as July 1995-June 1996), and higher temporal resolution daily burned area for a subset of the time series extending back to August 2000. The GFED4 burned area data can be obtained as follows:

  • ftp fuoco.geog.umd.edu
  • login: fire
  • pword: burnt
  • cd gfed4

Once logged in you will find several README files plus separate directories containing the monthly and daily GFED4 burned area files.

Annual hdf5 files with monthly GFED4s burned area (including small fires), emissions, and scalars to distribute the monthly emissions over the days as well as the diurnal cycle

The hdf5 files include fire carbon emissions (g C m-2 month-1) and dry matter emissions (kg DM m-2 month-1). In addition, fractional contributions of different fire types:

  1. Savanna, grassland, and shrubland fires
  2. Boreal forest fires
  3. Temperate forest fires
  4. Deforestation and degradation
  5. Peatland fires
  6. agricultural waste burning
A more extensive readme file https://www.geo.vu.nl/~gwerf/GFED/GFED4/Readme.pdf
Recommended emission factors (g species per kg dry matter burned) to calculate specific trace gas and aerosol emissions in combination with above listed fractional contributions https://www.geo.vu.nl/~gwerf/GFED/GFED4/ancill/
Regional estimates for the various trace gases and aerosol emissions https://www.geo.vu.nl/~gwerf/GFED/GFED4/tables/
Example code (Python and Matlab [the latter provided by Wolfgang Knorr]) on how to compute read the hdf5 files and compute trace gas or aerosol emissions https://www.geo.vu.nl/~gwerf/GFED/GFED4/ancill/code/

Biosphere fluxes: The CASA-GFED biosphere fluxes include NPP, Rh, and fires (BB). Units are in g C m-2 month-1. Our model does not have CO2 and nitrogen fertilization and is spun up to almost neutral conditions. The monthly datafiles are can be found along with the emissions estimates, please see the accompanying readme file for the file structure.


Tables with annual emission estimates for the various trace gas and emissions sources for the globe and the 14 basis regions we identified below. A digital version of this basis region map is included in the annual emissions files.