Climate change increases risk of megafires

http://abc.net.au/news/stories/2007/03/12/1868939.htmbushfire81206_wideweb__470x312,0.jpg
The effect of bush fires on any society is often quite severe, and could definately be seen as a contributor to pollution and greenhouse gas production
I thought I would pass on a couple of interesting observation on bush fire from Australia.
Victoria, one of the smaller states “ suffered 273 fires in a single day in September, and more than 600 in three days in October“.
This increase in reasent times in the number of fires is quite obviously linked to the El Niño effect and climate change
This lovely little link shows quite effectively how bush fires occur and travel.
It is important to note that bushfires are quite natural in Australia, and are required as part of the ongoing regenerative mechanisn for a large amount of Australias biodeversity. So much so that it is only recently that Australia has started deliberatly burning off large areas of bushland, to faciltate this regenerative process. This link gives a great feel for the effort put into fire management in Australia.
It must be said though that Australia has made many mistakes with management of our natural resources, and in particular how we manage our bushland. One mistake that lead to a much greater understanding of fires occured in 1983.This particule fire claimed 75 lives and over 2000 homes, and burnt over & & million acrest. Not surprising, because it occured on a wednesday Australian`s call 16th Feb 1983 `Ash Wednesday`. Imaginative bunch don`t you think.
So with the added risk of a continent drying out, it is reasobly fortunate that Australia has started managing it`s fire needs. In fact some recent research has found that carbon dioxide emissions are significantly lower with burnback activity because the fire is not as intense, and some materials get to decompose. There is an added risk that the spores will be consumed by the much more intense fires
careful_fire.gif

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Posted in climate change, pollution
One comment on “Climate change increases risk of megafires
  1. Thush says:

    Hey Craig,
    Coming from a country which has bush fires very occasionally i was amazed to see the extent of bush fires in Autralia in the past few months i have been there. I particularly remember the day that the fire is Gippsland (November 2006) was so bad that the air in the city (flinders street) was also foggy.
    I am with you on your comments with regard to deliberate bush fires for regenaration processess etc.However, what i find very distrbing is the extenet of bush fire arsonists. I was reading a article on BBC which stated that many of more than 100 fires blazing around Sydney and elsewhere, which have destroyed hundreds of homes and contributed to pollution, were lit deliberately
    It is sad that people engage in such reckless activities which have dire consequences that affect the present and future.
    Cheers
    Thush

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