Indonesia — The Bengkalis regency administration in Riau province willconstruct 30 canals to irrigate peatland in Bukit Batu subdistrict as a fireprevention effort. Last month, fires razed 1,600 hectares of peatland in theregency.
“With the canals and the irrigation system, no more forest fires areexpected next year,” Bengkalis Regent Samsyurizal said here Thursday. Hesaid the local government would also close canals made by illegal loggers totransport logs.
A forestry expert at Lancang Kuning University in Pekanbaru, Jonotoro, said theconstruction of the canals would help prevent fires on the peatland.
“The canals must be kept full with water to prevent fires spreading fromone block to others. Dry peatland is quite prone to fires,” he said.