Debate at the Center for Global Change

After a forest fire, we must wait for the response of the vegetation before undertaking plant restoration actions, since Mediterranean species are adapted to resprout or germinate very quickly, which can help us to avoid disasters and ecological alterations (introduction of heavy machinery that affects the resprouting vegetation, soil erosion caused by the techniques used in reforestation, etc.).

Likewise, the population should be prevented from interpreting fire as a source of economic income (due to the millions of dollars in investments that can be generated after disasters) and get used to the fact that these investments should be made in fire prevention actions and maintenance of well-preserved ecosystems, which can be a source of potential economic benefits and employment generation.

Due to the enormous social alarm caused by these fires, technicians (on many occasions) are forced by social and political groups to carry out actions (removal of burned wood and planting of unsuitable species) that slow down or delay vegetation dynamics. Scientific studies provide managers and politicians with knowledge models and action tools that can help them to make decisions in order to avoid, in the future, catastrophic episodes or to minimize the impacts that may occur.

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