The French national research agency CNRS have used Google Maps to create an impressive forest fire simulator.
Using the simulator it is possible to select a location on the map as the centre of the fire simulation. Before running the simulator you can also adjust the wind speed and direction. The simulation itself takes lots of data into account, including fuel, roads and elevation.
Currently the data is only available for Corsica so the simulator will only work properly on this Mediterranean island.
Via: Google Earth Blog