Forests play a key role in combating the climate crisis and protecting biodiversity due to their functions of regulating climate, water production, preventing floods, avalanches and overflows, mitigating the effects of droughts, and their biodiversity.
While carrying out our work with this awareness, with the new project we have launched, we aim to learn lessons from past fires and raise public awareness on preventing forest fires.
HUMAN-CAUSED DESTRUCTION PLAYS A MAJOR ROLE IN FOREST FIRES
In the summer of 2021, the catastrophic forest fires were one of the main topics on Turkey's agenda. According to official data, 133 thousand hectares of forest and 26 thousand hectares of agricultural land were burned in the fires, which constituted the biggest forest fire disasters in Turkey's history. 9 people and millions of living creatures lost their lives. Turkey's nature and life in the fire zones were severely damaged.
The climate crisis, whose impact is increasing with the decrease in biodiversity, is also cited as the reason for the 25% increase in forest fires in the temperate zone in which we are located. The fact that close to 140 thousand hectares of forest area burned down in 2021 due to large forest fires caused by high temperatures and a prolonged period of above-normal strong winds confirms this. However, the fact that 87% of the causes of the fires in 2021 were defined as intent, negligence, accident and unknown cause, destroying 99% of the forests proves that human-caused destruction is also a major factor in fires.