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: SDO captures images of two mid-level flares

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Protecting biodiversity

Dec 10, 2014

The Congo Basin is an unruly ribbon of tropical forest: Over a million square miles spanning six countries in Central Africa, running inward along the equator from the continent's western coast. It is the ...

"Carbon violence" underlies the green sheen of carbon offsets

Nov 10, 2014

Queensland researchers have coined the term 'carbon violence' to describe the effects of G20 and other developed countries' investments in African plantation forestry to offset carbon emissions in a report for US think tank, ...

The overlooked history of African technology

Oct 06, 2014

In the border region where Zimbabwe, Mozambique, and South Africa meet, indigenous hunters have for centuries made and used an impressive array of tools. There is the bow, made from giant raisin trees and ...

Protected areas offer glimmers of hope for wildlife

Oct 01, 2014

National parks and other protected areas offer hope for threatened species at a time of plunging wildlife numbers, conservationist group WWF said Tuesday, but their success has not been universal.

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

SDO captures images of two mid-level flares

Dec 19, 2014

The sun emitted a mid-level flare on Dec. 18, 2014, at 4:58 p.m. EST. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event. Solar flares are powerful bursts ...

Why is Venus so horrible?

Dec 19, 2014

Venus sucks. Seriously, it's the worst. The global temperature is as hot as an oven, the atmospheric pressure is 90 times Earth, and it rains sulfuric acid. Every part of the surface of Venus would kill you ...

Image: Christmas wrapping the Sentinel-3A antenna

Dec 19, 2014

The moment a team of technicians, gowned like hospital surgeons, wraps the Sentinel-3A radar altimeter in multilayer insulation to protect it from the temperature extremes found in Earth orbit.

Video: Flying over Becquerel

Dec 19, 2014

This latest release from the camera on ESA's Mars Express is a simulated flight over the Becquerel crater, showing large-scale deposits of sedimentary material.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.