Africa leads globe in forest fires

Apr 02, 2006

The African continent leads the globe in the frequency of forest fires, the African Forestry and Wildlife Commission learned at its meeting in Mozambique.

Forest fires are a major concern for Africa, mainly due to the traditional practice of using fire for conversion of forest to agriculture or grassland, said the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization.

The frequency of fires is particularly high in northern Angola, the southern region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, southern Sudan and the Central African Republic, the agency said.

However, the FAO said more than half of African countries have established new forestry policies and laws over the past 15 years, and two-thirds have an active national forestry management program in place. But implementation and enforcement of these measures remains weak, mainly due to lack of financing and weak national institutions, the agency added.

The net rate of forest loss in Africa, mainly due to conversion of forest lands to agriculture -- 9 million acres per year between 2000 and 2005 -- is the second highest in the world, after that of South America.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Researchers discover low-grade nonwoven cotton picks up 50 times own weight of oil

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Study indicates large raptors in Africa used for bushmeat

Jul 24, 2014

Bushmeat, the use of native animal species for food or commercial food sale, has been heavily documented to be a significant factor in the decline of many species of primates and other mammals. However, a new study indicates ...

Fossils of tiny, unknown hedgehog identified

Jul 08, 2014

Meet perhaps the tiniest hedgehog species ever: Silvacola acares. Its roughly 52-million-year-old fossil remains were recently identified by a University of Colorado Boulder-led team working in British Columb ...

ESA image: Mount Kenya from orbit

Jun 06, 2014

Mount Kenya, the second-highest mountain in Africa, is pictured in this image from Japan's ALOS satellite from 25 February 2011.

Recommended for you

Fermi satellite detects gamma-rays from exploding novae

15 hours ago

The Universe is home to a variety of exotic objects and beautiful phenomena, some of which can generate almost inconceivable amounts of energy. ASU Regents' Professor Sumner Starrfield is part of a team that ...

User comments : 0