Budget to prevent wildfires up by 10-fold

January 25, 2022 - 19:0

TEHRAN – A total of 1 trillion rials (around $3.6 million) has been allocated to preventing and extinguishing wildfires in the budget bill for the next Iranian calendar year (starting March 21), a 10-fold rise compared to the current year.

During the last two years, there has been no specific credit line for forest and pasture firefighting, but a special budget has been allotted in this regard for the next year, Masoud Mansour, head of the FRWMO said.

President Ebrahim Raisi submitted the administration’s draft of the national budget bill for the next year 1401, to the Majlis in December 2021. The proposed budget amounted to about 36.31 quadrillion rials (about $123 billion).

Supplying basic goods, treatment, and medical equipment; securing livelihood; supporting production and employment; promoting and supporting non-oil exports and knowledge-based companies are the focal points of the bill.

Wildfire in natural areas decreases by 49%

The occurrence of wildfire in natural areas has declined by 49 percent since the beginning of the current [Iranian calendar] year compared to the same period last year, deputy commander of the protection unit of the Forests, Rangelands, and Watershed Management Organization has said.

This year, with the implementation of protective measures and increasing public participation and equipping protection units, the burnt areas in natural resources have decreased by 46 percent compared to the previous year, Ali Mohammadi Moghaddam said in December 2021.

Currently, 5,000 rangers are active to protect natural resources, however, one protection force is needed for every 2,000 hectares of forest and one protection force for every 10,000 hectares of pasture, which has not been achieved in the country due to lack of manpower.

According to Mohammadi Moghaddam, there are currently 135 million hectares of forests and pastures in the country, with one ranger per 6,000 hectares of forest, and one ranger per 30,000 hectares of pastures.

Wildfires are mostly caused by unintentional human error, said that over 90 percent of wildfires are ignited by humans unintentionally while setting fires in nature, smoking, and releasing plastic and glass containers.

FB/MG

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