• Sunday, Sep 26, 2021
  • Last Update : 12:51 am

Algeria hit by wave of forest fires

  • Published at 11:31 pm July 5th, 2021
Wildfire
Bigstock

More than 200 firemen supported by forest rangers were mobilized to battle the outbreaks

Forest fires that broke out in northeast Algeria on Sunday destroyed dozens of hectares of trees and were battled by firefighters, soldiers and volunteers, officials said on Monday.

The official APS news agency reported officials at Khenchela in the Aures massif as saying the flames destroyed thousands of trees of different species.

More than 200 firemen supported by forest rangers were mobilized to battle the outbreaks in the Ain Mimoun woodlands in the Tamza area.

APS said soldiers, police and volunteers also helped to fight the fires and evacuate families.

Two helicopters were also sent to the area, television reports said.

An investigation has begun into the outbreak. Forest fires last year resulted in the arrests of several arsonists.

Despite being the largest country in Africa, Algeria has only 4.1 million hectares (10 million acres) of forest.

In 2020, nearly 44,000 hectares (nearly 109,000 acres) of trees and thickets went up in smoke in a country with a reforestation rate of just 1.76%.

Climate change amplifies droughts which can create ideal conditions for wildfires to spread out of control and inflict unprecedented environmental and material damage.

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