The Forest Fire Season Ended in Costa Rica with 141 Emergencies and More than 27 Thousand Hectares Burned

    Climate change affecting the country

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    The 2024 forest fire season officially ended in Costa Rica and is the most aggressive in the last 10 years.According to data from the Fire Department, 141 emergencies were attended and 27,865 hectares were burned.

    “The climax of the fire season occurred in the month of March, we registered a fire emergency every 8 minutes, when on average one is attended every 20 minutes”, highlighted the firefighters.

    Guanacaste, the most affected

    The country experienced a historical figure due to forest fires, practically tripling the number of fires in comparison with 2023.In addition, the most affected province was Guanacaste, which closed with 92 fires, according to statistics, that means more than the total of the last 9 years.Also, 13,800 incidents were attended due to charral burning and fires in waste areas.

    Why the increase?

    “We consider that the high temperatures, the strength of the winds and the absence of rains favored this scenario, characteristic of the El Niño phenomenon,” the institution mentioned.The first half of each year is a time of alert due to the risk of forest fires.

    According to the Minister of Environment and Energy (Minae), Franz Tattenbach, in 2024, the El Niño phenomenon generated:

    Increased temperatures

    Decreased humidity

    Dry winds that fuel fires

    “Although this represents a small percentage of the national territory, its recovery will take years,” he added.As he explained, the issue is not only complicated by the risks to flora and fauna.Soils, water quality, fuel global warming due to carbon emissions that are released and affect the health of people and communities.

    “We want to rescue that thanks to the work of the Forestry Operational Unit and the Fire Stations, more than 100 thousand hectares were saved”, emphasize the authorities.

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