Australian has some monitoring tools available at their disposal. FireWatch by Landgate is a national bushfire monitoring system that provides timely information about hotspots to emergency service managers across Australia. The mapping system allows users to identify fire locations with a potential risk to communities and property. Their website provides a variety of mapping information for residents and fire departments in Australia.
One application on the site, My Fire Watch has been developed as a collaborative effort between Landgate and Edith Cowan University. It provides real time bush fire information in a real time easy to use format for the public. I noticed that you can also click a box on the map to show you where lightning activity has occurred and notice that many of the current fire locations correlate with where recent lightning strikes have occurred. You can also click on the box to see the fire history for Australia last year and the year before.
This application is very similar to MODIS, a tool utilized by the US Forest Service that we explored in a previous post.
The picture is from the AP wire (Evan Colis) article from January of this year, "Wildfires Blistering Heat Scorch Australia"