Wildfires have been spreading around the globe during the past few months. This map shows how many wildfires have been popping up on practically every continent. Forest fires do not only threaten peoples’ lives and homes, they also destroy the forests and with them the benefits the forests provide for the earth, wildlife and mankind.
What is the difference between forest fires and wildfires?
A wildfire that occurs in a forest is also called a forest fire. Wildfires can also spread through deserts and would then be referred to as a desert fire. There are some forest fires that are set intentionally to clear wooded areas, but if the fire spreads uncontrollably it is then considered a wildfire.
What are the negative effects of forest fires?
Forest fires that enter residential areas can be fatal and can devastate entire communities. Wildfires that consume forested areas also destroy natural habitats for different wildlife species. In addition forests provide food for many populations around the world and they also provide clean air for us to breathe. Losing forested areas negatively affects air quality and it takes years to re-grow the forests and restore them to their full function.
Climate change can contribute to the increase of forest fires
A major contributor to forest fires is climate change. This may sound like it is out of our control, but people actually have a significant impact on climate change. By making greener choices in our daily lives we can help reduce our ecological footprint, which can help prevent additional climate change. Here are some tips for how you can help prevent climate change.
Arson and accidental forest fires
Some forest fires are started purposely by arsonists. This is a serious crime that can cause irreparable damage to the environment. People can also start fires unintentionally. When camping or hiking in the forest people can accidentally start forest fires if they do not take care of properly putting out their campfires. Everyone should follow these safety guidelines when making campfires.
Naturally occurring fires from lightning
Not all forest fires can be prevented. Lightning also starts some wildfires every year. During the summer months these types of forest fires can spread rapidly through dry brush and grass. Although we can’t do much to prevent these types of forest fires firefighters still have to put them out in order to reduce the damage.
If forest fires continue to spread they will cause much damage to our planet. Help do your part by spreading forest fire awareness tips for campers. Also you can continue to support green living that will reduce climate change and help prevent more forest fires.
Photo Credit: Ervins Strauhmanis