Wildfires are torching our forests and we need to change tactics
British Columbia has just experienced the worst forest fire season in its history. It was only last week that, after a summer of fire, a province-wide state of emergency was lifted. Several fires grew in size to well over one-hundred thousand hectares, and this led to numerous evacuation orders. Other provinces, including Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba also experienced an increase in the number of wildfires.
Without the funding of more scientific research into the management of forests and the prevention of wildfires, the cost of wildfire to humans in terms of health issues, as well as the cost to the environment, will only increase. A new program in Ontario called BOB (burn and observe) is experimenting with the idea that not all fires need to be fought if they do not impact humans. This will prevent the creation of artificially large forests.