English version of the news. Note: the news has been translated by Google translator. Original version in the link provided.
CUBA – Havana, Jan 16 (ACN) More than 350 forest fires were registered in Cuba in 2017, with a balance of more than 6,000 hectares damaged and millions of dollars in economic losses, according to a report from the Ranger Corps that warns of a possible increase in these incidents. for 2018.
The losses are estimated at more than 27 million pesos, transcended in the national meeting of the beginning of the Forest Fire Protection Campaign, held in the Sabana-Manacas model forest, in Villa Clara, the Juventud Rebelde newspaper reported.
The meeting insisted on the need to continue increasing measures against fires, such as the opening of trails, the monitoring of wooded areas, and the control of illegal logging, hunting and fishing, because those who practice them sometimes unleash the fire accidentally.
According to the report of the Ranger Corps, the damaged forest territory in 2017 includes four thousand 29 hectares of natural forests, two thousand 644 hectares of plantations and more than a thousand hectares of swamp grasslands.
It states that during the so-called critical or dry period, which runs from January to May, 91 percent of the losses occurred, with the greatest losses concentrated in the provinces of Mayabeque, Matanzas, Camagüey and Holguín.
By 2018 specialists estimate an increase in fires in forested areas, taking into account the great mass of trees felled by Hurricane Irma and accumulated foliage in the provinces of Villa Clara, Sancti Spíritus, Ciego de Ávila and Camagüey.
Gustavo Rodríguez Rollero, Cuban Minister of Agriculture and President of the National Reforestation Commission, said that due to the country’s policy of promoting more forest areas, fire protection should be increased.
As part of the start of the campaign, an extended combat exercise was carried out in front of a forest fire, in which professionals from the Ranger Corps, specialized brigades of the Forestry Company and volunteers from the community took part.