Forest fires as an environmental problem

Forest fires as an environmental problem

Any uncontrolled forest fire harms the environment and is a real natural disaster that leads to a disastrous environmental and economic conditions, destroys the ecosystem, leads to the death of people and animals. The most common reason of ignition is a man, but wildland fires can’t be also excluded - they destroy old and sick trees, renewing the flora.

Types and classification of forest fires

Depending on how high the flame extends, fires can be divided into several types.

  1. Grass and forest cover catch fire during a ground fire. In this case, a quick or steady spread of fire is possible. In the first case, the fire is quickly spreading in another area, not damaging tree roots.
  2. Crowning fires are being developed from the ground ones: the flame rises, taking the crowns of trees, and the wind spreads the fire.
  3. Interbedding (peat) burning occurs at a depth of over 50 centimeters. Severe fires are being characterized by acrid smoke, because fire damages the root system and soil as well as leads to the release of harmful substances into the atmosphere.

The consequences of wildfires and peat fires are very diverse, because ecosystem, living organisms, the economy and all spheres of human life are being damaged.

Forest fires: causes and statistics

Not all fires start because of man, so it’s interesting to know what are the main typical causes of wildfires? They are divided into natural and anthropogenic. In the first case, the reason of it is lightning, in the second one — it’s a man and his activities. People can trigger the burning of peat with one spark or car exhaust, especially when the forest area is declared fire-dangerous.
Annually more than 340 million hectares of natural forest areas are being destroyed by fire, and Russia is now in 8th place according to the statistics of forest destroyed areas.
Thanks to modern technologies, the professionals can predict the occurrence of fire and do preventive work, aimed at preventing forest fires.

Forest fire monitoring and hazard

Professionals have several ways to track forest fires:

  • equipped fire towers;
  • observation;
  • aircraft monitoring;
  • study of information from satellites.

Thanks to the development of modern monitoring systems it became possible not only quickly coordinate the actions of firefighters and put out the fire, but also to recognize the fire danger zone in advance. If the forest is already on fire, the fire must be localized and stopped. The main danger of forest fires is the speed of their spread, that’s why the firefighters make a mineralized forest strip using a bulldozer that cuts off the burning forest. The problem and prevention of forest and peat fires are relevant to the countries with a large forest area, for Russia, for example, and the recent events in Siberia confirm this.

Read also:
Ecological problems of Ukraine
Why can not burn grass and garbage
Forest - lungs of the planet