Environment Ministry anticipates forest fires despite La Nina

Environment Ministry anticipates forest fires despite La Nina

A screenshot of Deputy Minister of Environment and Forestry, Alue Dohong, during a coordination meeting held to discuss precautionary measures against La Nina, held in Jakarta on Friday (October 29, 2021). (ANTARA/Prisca Triferna/KT)

We must bolster efforts to monitor and verify hotspots intensively, especially in areas prone to fire
Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Ministry of Environment and Forestry readies anticipatory measures against forest and land fires during and after the La Nina nature phenomenon, in addition to preparing plans to mitigate hydrological disaster, according to Deputy Minister Alue Dohong .  

"La Nina triggers excessive rainfall, but based on the Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysical Agency's (BMKG's) analysis, despite La Nina, there are certain regions that experience drought. Hence, we must remain vigilant against forest and land fires during La Nina," Dohong told a coordination meeting on La Nina here on Friday.

Indonesia has experienced a decline in the number of forest and land fire hotspots in recent years, he noted. In 2019, the nation recorded 1,649,258 hotspots, and the number dropped to 296,942 in 2020, and  229,978 this year, according to him.


The prevention efforts will be executed through climate analysis and intervention using weather modification technology when conditions become critical, he added.

Related news: Ministry readies warning system for La Nina triggered-disasters

He said his team is continuing to monitor daily weather situations, and BMKG would announce early warnings for forest and land fires.


The director general of law enforcement at the Ministry has been monitoring the hotspots located on concession lands and will broadcast a warning if a hotspot is detected in the zones, he informed.


Other than distributing information about the hotspots, the ministry will also keep track of hotspots in degraded peatlands that are more flammable, Dohong said. One of the preventive measures for fires involves wetting the peatlands, he informed.

Related news: BMKG cautions of La Nina-triggered high precipitation

"We must bolster efforts to monitor and verify hotspots intensively, especially in areas prone to fire," he affirmed.


Patrols will also be intensified in January-March 2022 in Aceh, North Sumatra, Riau, and West Kalimantan, he said.


Enhanced patrols will be carried out in Riau, Jambi, South Sumatra, West Kalimantan, and parts of South Kalimantan in April-June 2022, according to the ministry.


Meanwhile, in August-October 2022, patrols will be focused on all areas vulnerable to forest and land fires.

Related news: Regions should be prepared against hydrometeorological disasters: BNPB

Related news: Early warning important to face La Nina-caused disasters: BNPB