August 4, 2020

A forest fire destroys 1,160 hectares of savanna and forest in Colombia



A forest fire in the El Tuparro National Natural Park, located in the Colombian department of Vichada (south), has razed at least 1,160 hectares of savanna, savanna forest and riparian forest, authorities said Sunday.

National Parks of Colombia (PNN) explained in a brief statement that the fire, which is unknown causes that caused it, began more than 48 hours ago in two known sectors Cerro Tomas and Tomo River.

Since then the park rangers are working to put out the “plant cover fire” with the help of firefighters in the region and PNN “maintains permanent monitoring in order to identify in time other sources of heat that may occur in the protected area.”

On the other hand, the authorities also try to put out a fire in a swamp in the municipality of Cereté, in the Caribbean department of Córdoba.

The National Unit for Disaster Risk Management (UNGRD) detailed in its social networks that the authorities use a Colombian Air Force (FAC) helicopter to try to extinguish the fire.

“The Air Force, with the support of a helicopter, works on the control and liquidation of fire presented in the Corralito district, in Cereté, Córdoba. At the moment 20 downloads have been made since the beginning of the operation,” said UNGRD.

Last week a fire in the forests surrounding Caño Cristales, the Colombian river of “five colors” in the downtown department of Meta, devoured some 500 hectares of vegetation from the Serranía de la Macarena.

The area burned by the fire, already extinguished, increased the counter of deforested hectares of Colombia, despite the Government’s insistence that deforestation is decreasing.

Although in 2018 the Institute of Hydrology, Meteorology and Environmental Studies (Ideam) accounted for 197,159 hectares deforested, 10% less than in 2017, the figure is still alarming because in the latter maximum levels had been registered, especially in the Amazon

Ideam estimates that Natural National Parks lost 21,046 hectares in 2018 alone, with the aggravating fact that, in these reserves – which correspond to more than 12% of Colombia – there is 32% of the biodiversity identified in the country.

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