- Dixie Fire began when a tree fell on power lines belonging to Pacific Gas & Electric.
- California Public Utilities Commission enacted measures to strengthen PG&E’s governance and operations as part of the bankruptcy reconstruction plan.
- Spacept uses satellite data from the SPOT Satellite to pinpoint the area where the attack is most likely to have started.
- Spacept’s Tree Detector discovers areas of dense growth in the way of the power cables that needed to be cleared.
Forest fires are becoming increasingly common in many places of the world as a result of climate change. Extinguished campfires, dispersed cigarettes, and lightning strikes are all significant causes of these fires, with lightning strikes and downed power lines being more common in California than in other states.
Dixie Fire, which began on July 13th when a tree fell on power lines belonging to Pacific Gas & Electric, swiftly escalated to become the state’s most devastating fire in history. It is still burning today. Following growing debt from lawsuits stemming from forest fires in 2015 and 2017, as well as the 2018 Camp Fire that decimated the town of Paradise, PG&E filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in hopes of avoiding billions of dollars in future fire liability.
PG&E exited from bankruptcy with a $ 25.5 billion deal that included compensation for all primary forest fire victims and groups, as well as board changes. According to PG&E’s vegetation management strategy, traditional tree removal methods will be used throughout the year, at least for the time being. The inspectors manually label trees that require pruning or removal after they have notified the landowner or homeowner that the inspection is about to arrive. Marked trees may require maintenance for up to four to six weeks.
According to the California Public Utilities Commission, the California Public Utilities Commission enacted measures to strengthen PG&E’s governance and operations as part of the bankruptcy reconstruction plan. Wildfire risk can be decreased by implementing measures such as the EVM program (Enhanced Vegetation Management).
The utility will also consider the threats caused by dead or dying trees, overhanging branches, or being overly tall as part of its vegetation management strategy in the future, which will be implemented in 2018. The primary goal of the company is to complete 1,800 kilometers of EVM by the year 2021…
The utility selected Circuit Protection Zones (CPZ) as the primary focus for the top 20% of wildfire-prone sites, with the remainder of the utility’s resources going to other areas. After dividing the top 20 percent into danger groups ranging from 1 percent to 3 percent, 4 percent to 10 percent, and 11 percent to 20 percent, it is determined that the top 1 percent to 3 percent will be given the majority of the attention during the 1,800 EVM miles. According to estimates, only 3% of the population travels a total of 2,422 miles every year.
According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Google Maps, and PG&E’s map, the Dixie Fire began near CPZs with a risk of 11 percent to 20 percent, consistent with previous reports. The Dixie Fire has burned for more than a week. Following the Dixie Fire, it is exceedingly unlikely that PG&E will implement its EVM program in the affected area in the future.
Spacept uses satellite data from the SPOT Satellite to predict events:
In recent years, California has seen more severe and longer-lasting droughts than in previous years. Between the most dangerous things, there isn’t a lot of space for wagering. The availability of information and the response time must be commensurate with the scale of the operation.
Spacept is testing out new techniques to see whether they can detect the vegetation risks that started the Dixie Fire in the first place. In the future, the capacity to detect encroachment could help prevent wildfires, which would improve electricity reliability. Spacept used satellite data from the SPOT Satellite, which was launched on June 15th, to pinpoint the area where the attack is most likely to have started. The blaze is believed to have started on Dixie Road near Feather River Canyon.
Spacept’s Tree Detector discovered areas of dense growth in the way of the power cables that needed to be cleared. One such risky place of overgrowth was created by zooming in on a particular section and using a mask to detect the power line’s path and any nearby flora. The graphic shows areas of the power line’s path that have been removed in blue, red, and orange. The red and orange signify significant tree and vegetation densities, respectively.
Because of this, Spacept observed many sites of significant concern where PG&E’s recommended distance between low-hanging tree limbs and power cables was exceeded by as much as 40 feet. Future PG&E and other power companies might employ satellite-based technologies like Spacept to spot such overgrowth and direct vegetation management efforts to specific regions in advance. Spacept is one of these companies.
For example, in California, where wildfires are widespread and deadly, any reduction in the number of wildfires in the area might avert the damage of critical ecosystems and infrastructure, saving businesses billions of dollars in litigation. Improving management foresight is necessary to overcome the challenges of scaling and initiating an inspection. To control vegetation more quickly, satellite analysis is a practical and proactive technique.