Central Asia to fight fires

5 June 2008

published by www.montsame.mn

Mongolia — The first Central Asian conference on forest fire is being hosted in Ulaanbaatar these days.

The situation in Mongolia draws attention not only of the region, but also of the world because Mongolia with its too small forest resources “contributes” not less to the ecological and climate changes by forest fires and chopping off forests.

In the last 20 years, a number of steppe and forest fires, of areas burnt by fires, and sizes of damages caused to the environment increased substantially in Central Asia.

In view of this, a necessity has emerged to join efforts on the regional scale against the steppe and forest fires. According to the trends of climate warming process, the steppe fires in Mongolia lead the vegetation to the process of turning to steppe, to the thaw of permafrost, and to the drying out of bogs and marshlands. Therefore, it is indispensable to create an international cooperation mechanism to take measures against the fires that are reaching a disaster level.

On Thursday, a new method of preventing and protecting from forest fires is experimented for the first time in Central Asia on the territory of Tunkhel soum of Selenge aimag. A fire is set to the experimented area of 17 hectares under the strict control in order to show progressive technique for reducing threats of fires through diminishing biomass in the forest.

In June and July, a team of scholars led by Pacific Forest Forum president L.Kondrashov will work over preparatory works for drawing up a forest management national policy. The final version of a targeted project to be carried out in Mongolia will be presented to the Government of Mongolia in November 2008.

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