The role and history of fire in tropical landscapes


Authors: Johann Georg Goldammer

General - 2022

ISSUE No.: 61


Language: English


Globally, the role of natural fire in ecosystems, and of cultural fire in land management, has been explored widely. This article provides an overview of the many roles and impacts of fire in different environments in and around tropical forests, and while not exhaustive, it shows that fire management solutions and decision making must be based on historic and contemporary scientific and technical evidence. There has been substantial progress in understanding the application of fire management approaches in which local communities act in their own interest to maximize the benefits from the appropriate use of fire and to avoid damage caused by wildfires. Unfortunately, only a few countries have put in place fire management policies and practices that address the underlying causes of the excessive and harmful application of fire where it is not appropriate. 

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