Rural Fires – Area burned this year more than doubles since 15th July

Since 15th July the amount of burned area has increased from 10,178 hectares this year to 22,887 hectares (as at 26th July)

According to ICNF in their latest report some 51% of the forest fires that have ignited from 1st January to 15th July and investigated came from the burning of piles of debris and extensive burnings according to the ICNF.

This year’s second ICNF Interim Rural Fire Report, indicates that as of that date, 70% of the total number of fires causing 89% of the total area burned have been investigated. .

Of these the investigation  a cause was found in 69% of incidents,  causing 77% of the area burned by July 15.

The same document highlights that the most frequent causes are burning of forest or agricultural surplus (25%) and arson – attributable (19%). Some 10% of fires were from re-ignitions.

The provisional report of rural fires does not include the fires of the last days, namely those that reached the municipalities of Vila de Rei and Mação.

This report indicates that between January 1 and July 15 there were 5,570 rural fires resulting in 10,178 hectares (ha) of burned area, including forest (4205 ha), bush (4068 ha) and agriculture (1905 ha)..

As at 27th July,  55% of which concern the area burned in forest stands, 33% in bush land and 12% in agricultural land.

The ICNF report notes that up to July 15 this year there were 30% fewer rural fires and 53% less burned area than the annual average over the last ten years.

The ICNF indicates that the largest number of fires, up to July 15, occurred in the districts of Porto (895), Braga (474) and Lisboa (431).

In turn, the most affected district, with regard to the burned area, was Beja with 1,832 hectares, about 18% of the total area burned to date, followed by Braga with 1,260 hectares (12% of the total) and Vila Real. 1,120 hectares (11% of the total).


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