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Forest Fire Risk Management


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Abstract


Forest and land fires are a common a phenomenon that occur around the world, whether controlled or not, deliberate or accident. Forest fire causes a lot of impacts to Indonesian forest areas. The impact includes loss of biodiversity, destroyed agriculture areas, and loss of properties. In general, however, and in context, forest fires are uncontrolled fires in a wooded area (Merriam-Webster, n.d.) that are destructive (Oxford, n.d.) both to its surroundings and the economy of the country it is located in. Forests are abundant in Indonesia, especially in regions near and at the equator. Indonesia is one of the prime producers of timber, palm oil, and rubber, among others. Land fires also occur, for land clearing or otherwise, therefore the terms ‘forest fires’ and ‘land fires’ will be used interchangeably throughout this report, unless stated otherwise. This also includes ‘peatland fires’ as peatlands are detrimental in the ignition process of many of the fires.

The main source of livelihoods of rural Indonesians are agriculture-based, particularly rice. This results in man-made fires for land-clearing activities from both palm oil and forestry companies and smallholder farmers. In some parts of Kalimantan and Sumatra, slash and burn practices are part of the local culture and applied to fertilize the soil, according to locals. However, there is a wide belief among them that major fires (that caused problems of haze and haze) are caused by palm oil and forestry companies, while smallholders are able to control the fires within their patch of land (RCA, 2016).

The main source of livelihoods of rural Indonesians are agriculture-based, particularly rice. This results in man-made fires for land-clearing activities from both palm oil and forestry companies and smallholder farmers. In some parts of Kalimantan and Sumatra, slash and burn practices are part of the local culture and applied to fertilize the soil, according to locals. However, there is a wide belief among them that major fires (that caused problems of haze and haze) are caused by palm oil and forestry companies, while smallholders are able to control the fires within their patch of land (RCA, 2016).

Relevent Publication :

  • Sagala, S., Sitinjak, E. and Dodon (2015) Fostering Community Preparedness to Wildfire: Experiences from Indonesia, in Paton, D. Wildfire Hazards, Risks, and Disasters, Elsevier Publishing. | Download
  • Rianawati, E. and Sagala, S. (2014) "Wildfire Community Preparedness", Sustainability Science Symposium, University of Padjajaran, 8-10 September 2014, Bandung

On-goin Project :

  • Policy Analysis of Forest Fire Impact to Children, Locations: South Sumatra, West Kalimantan, Central Kalimantan, Funding by Wahana Visi Indonesia (World Vision) and UNICEF