Forest fires and prescribed burning

The past few weeks we have experienced extreme weather in Europe. From extreme heat, long droughts to strong wind. As a result of the heat in combination with the drought and wind, there are 20% more forest fires than in 2017.

Forest fires often occur when the wind speed exceeds 30 kilometers per hour, the air humidity is less than 30 percent and the temperature is 30 degrees Celsius or more.

We hear everything about it in the news. But did you know that foresters sometimes plan a forest fire? This is called prescribed burning.

This may sound negative. But prescribed burning is used for a variety of reasons. One of the most notable contained burning benefits is to maintain the health of an existing natural area containing native plants. The fire helps manage weeds and other growth and thus helps to reduce the risk of wildfires, but it also can help restore nutrients and help lead to more desirable plant growth in the future. Woodlands, prairies, and wetlands are perfect natural communities for contained fires.

They also say that this method has the ability to control the spreading of wildfires, and to therefore reduce the carbon footprint that the forests have on the atmosphere.

Used sources: Prescribed Burns Considered For Forest Management,  Prescribed Burns and The European Forest Fire Information System.

Number of fires mapped in The European Forest Fire Information System

Fires approximately 30 ha or larger.

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