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Audio: What can we expect from tropical fire season 2020?

  • On today’s episode of the Mongabay Newscast we look at what’s driving the intense fire seasons we’ve seen around the world in recent years, what we can expect from the 2020 fire season in tropical forest regions like the Amazon and Indonesia, and some solutions to the problem.
  • Australia’s fire season may have just ended, but most of the world’s tropical forest regions will soon be entering their own. We welcome three guests to the podcast today to examine the trends shaping tropical fire seasons around the world: Rhett Butler, Dan Nepstad, and Aida Greenbury.
  • Wildfires have made international headlines a lot in the past few years, most recently due to Australia’s devastating bushfires, but the Amazon, Indonesia, and Congo Basin also had severe fire seasons in 2019.
  • Our guests discuss the drivers and also some solutions, like investing in Brazilian farmers to incentivize fire prevention, and the High Carbon Stock Approach to stemming forest loss.

On today’s episode of the Mongabay Newscast we look at what’s driving the intense fire seasons we’ve seen around the world in recent years, what can we expect from the 2020 fire season in tropical forest regions like the Amazon and Indonesia, and some solutions to the problem.

Listen here:

 

Australia’s fire season may have just ended, but most of the world’s tropical forest regions will soon be entering theirs. We welcome three guests to the show today to examine the trends shaping tropical fire seasons around the world. Rhett Butler, Mongabay’s founder and CEO, joins us to give more of a global perspective. We’re also joined by Dan Nepstad, the president and founder of US-based NGO Earth Innovation Institute, who worked in the Brazilian Amazon for more than three decades; as well as Aida Greenbury, who now works out of Sydney, Australia as a sustainability advisor for a variety of entities, like the High Carbon Stock Approach (and is also a member of Mongabay’s advisory board), but previously served as managing director of sustainability at Indonesia’s Asia Pulp & Paper Group, one of the largest pulp and paper companies in the world, for 13 years.

Wildfires have made international headlines a lot in the past few years, most recently due to Australia’s devastating bushfires. The country’s most impacted state, New South Wales, saw some 25.5 million acres burn — an area roughly the size of South Korea. The smoke was so bad that Australian capital Canberra recorded its worst air quality ever. Dozens died due to the fires, and many thousands more lost their homes, before rains came in mid-February and helped contain the blazes.

More reading from this episode:

Rhett Butler for Mongabay: “Rainforests in 2020: Ten things to watch,” December 2019; “Amazon deforestation increases for 13th straight month in Brazil,” May 2020.

Dan Nepstad in the New York Times, “How to help Brazilian Farmers Save the Amazon,” December 2019.

Aerial view of a large burned area in the city of Candeiras do Jamari in the state of Rondônia, Brazil. August 2019. Photo Credit: Victor Moriyama / Greenpeace.

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Fire crews in Northern California set fire backburn on October 26, 2007 to stop the Poomacha fire from advancing westward. Photo Credit: Andrea Booher/FEMA.

Follow Mike Gaworecki on Twitter: @mikeg2001

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