In recent years, wildfires have devastated forests, forests and landscapes, exacerbating environmental and climatic conditions around the world. Fires cause increased temperatures, long drying periods (making the soil drier) and heat waves. These are just some of the environmental effects of fires. Wildfires exacerbate climate change, and climate change in turn exacerbates these phenomena. Therefore, it is necessary to educate the community about the importance of forest fire prevention through individual action. Knowing what to do to prevent wildfires can save lives, including the planet.
According to Greenpeace, wildfires around the world released 6.375 million tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere in 2019. In recent years, wildfires in Spain have been mainly caused by heatwaves and drought, which have worsened breeding conditions. These conditions prolong the risk period for forests vulnerable to insufficient forest management.
This demonstrates the need for immediate action to prevent wildfires worldwide. Finding a solution is not only the job of the authorities, but we can all donate a grain of sand to prevent wildfires. Here are some tips we offer. How to prevent wildfires
Do not leave garbage that can cause a fire
Leaving debris, paper, and other combustibles, such as bottles and glass objects that act as magnifying glass, can be tragic. Smoking in and around the woods is extremely dangerous. Do not throw cigarette butts or matches outside the car window. The wind can carry them and rejuvenate them.
Do not light during the fire season
95% of wildfires are caused by humans, and most of them are caused by negligence. June 1st to November 1st are the highest risk of fire, especially at noon and sunset in July and August, and on weekends. Small sparks and sparks can cause disasters. This eliminates the need for fires, barbecues, or burning tree stumps or other agroforestry waste.
How to prevent a forest fire?
Be careful in places where there is a risk of fire. It is not advisable to enclose homes in these areas with highly flammable seeds (Arizona cypress, cypress, etc.). Do not build or use barbecue on windy days or within the limits of greater danger. Waste must be disposed of in approved containers or landfills. ..
One of the wildfire precautions is for the owner of a house in an explosive environment to approve the Self-Defense Forces plan. It consists of installing water tanks and fire hydrants in the streets to keep the surrounding roads free of vehicles and vegetation. Those who enter nature should know the environment and other paths and strive to reach a visible place without leaving the indicated place.
Avoid the use of cars and machinery
Cars or other vehicles on fire must be parked in an approved car park. Or at least in a clean area without grass or bushes. Exhaust pipes in contact with dry bushes can cause a fire. And do not use brush cutters, chainsaws, or other mechanical tools that may create sparks or excessive heat.
Invest in forest management
Prevention through good forest management prevents major forest fires. It is important to address the root causes that cause them promptly and prevent them from repeating themselves year after year. More should be invested in preventive forestry. Reducing wildfires comes from treating and managing our forests and natural landscapes. Prevention, planning and protection measures are essential to reduce the number of wildfires and their impact on the environment.
Improving environmental awareness
As already mentioned, human carelessness is one of the main causes of forest fires. Therefore, recognizing the risks and consequences of wildfire may be the best way to end wildfire. Actively share fire safety advice with those around you, notify authorities in the event of a mountain spill, remove potentially fire-causing debris, and properly extinguish fires left behind.
Strengthen law enforcement and control
Environmental regulations must be consistently applied to those who caused a forest fire. Likewise, more human and technological tools are needed to prevent these crimes. Or at least not punished. In addition, we need to find ways to put out these types of fires with minimal impact.
Learn how to deal with a fire
If you see a fire or a column of smoke, time is of the essence: You should immediately call 112 for emergency or 062 for the Civil Guard. It is important to provide as much information as possible. The important thing is to avoid the fire downwind or sideways as quickly as possible so that the fire does not damage us. Look for clearance, not slopes, valleys, or potholes. If you arrive by car, it is better to close the windows. Do not leave them alone when working with exterminators and always contact a knowledgeable or authorized person.
Aqua to prevent forest fires
Oriol Vilalta, a professional firefighter, is part of the Red Impulsores del Cambio project managed by the Aquae Foundation in partnership with the Ashoka Foundation. Esta colaboración nace con el objetivo de catalizar la innovación disruptiva en España y América Latina identificando y apoyando proyectos de gran impacto social.
Vilalta está liderando un cambio profundo en la percepción que la sociedad tiene del fuego realizando un trabajo muy activo en red a través de la divulgación de conocimiento en la ecología del fuego y la gestión de los incendios forestales. La prevención de incendios forestales es fundamental más allá de la extinción.
Entre la iniciativas que realiza para tomar conciencia de la importancia de prevenir los incendios forestales, Oriol Vilalta ha creado la Fundación Pau Costa. Esta es la primera comunidad forestales internacional en la que investigadores, bomberos, agricultores y sociedad civil se ocupan de promover una nueva forma de entender y gestionar el fuego.