Dhruvika writes on sustainable practices in various sectors for BuzzOnEarth. Get in touch with her at Sometimes she reads her emails too.

The dramatic forest fires of the United States last year are still afresh in our memories. Due to drastic changes in climate, the dry forests are increasingly catching fires. The forest management is taking the old ways of getting things under control which is- set the forest on fire.

It sounds idiotic but it’s an efficient and proven way to avoid the deadly forest fires. The preventive method is different from the usual fire as it is controlled fire burning. These fires are created to burn off dead leaves and wood that might act as a fuel for the destructive burning of the forests.


It’s a simple practice. If you don’t want stench in your house, make sure your surroundings are clean. By eradicating the potential fuel for forest fires, we can easily avoid it or its further spread.

This practice is done every three to seven years to clear up the dead leaves and dry wood from the forest lands.

This practice was performed by native Americans and Australians but a century ago, Forest Service banned the practice in the United States. In early 1900, they launched a campaign to put an end to forest fires with Smokey the Bear as its mascot. That resulted in a massive build-up of the dry wood, dead leaves, shrubs and bushes which caused horrific and uncontrollable fires that are difficult to stop.

But now the forest department is aware of the prescribed burning and the science behind it. It still is a highly regulated practice and is done with necessary caution and safety. Occasionally, things can get out of control and cause trouble but on a bigger outlook, it is saving lives and forest lands.

This technique is likely to concern people living in houses that might perceive it as dangerous and thus, might receive backslash. But what it truly is nothing but forest conservation.



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