Experts in forest fires arrive in Amazonas to fight wildfires

Combating a fire in a forest area in Amazonas (Alex Pazuello/Secom)
Adrisa De Góes – From Cenarium Amazônia Magazine

MANAUS (AM) – Twenty firefighters and two forest fire specialists arrived in Manaus on Monday to work on fighting the fires that have affected the Amazon in recent weeks. The group, which has international experience, is part of the National Center for Preventing and Combating Forest Fires (Prevfogo), of the Brazilian Institute for the Environment and Renewable Natural Resources (Ibama).

According to the agency’s superintendent in the state, Joel Bentes, the agents were transferred from Ibama bases in Rondônia and Mato Grosso, as well as in the south of Amazonas. The team will work in the municipalities around Manaus, which is where fires are most prevalent.

Joel Bentes, Ibama superintendent in Amazonas (Jander Souza/Revista Cenarium Amazônia)

“The decision on the area of operation will be made by the Prevfogo coordinators, who are level two specialists in forest firefighting. They will analyze the images, wind direction, conditions in the municipalities, displacement, all the logistics, in order to make the best decision. Firefighting can’t just happen”, said Bentes.


Also according to the superintendent, the agency’s expectation is that, within three days of starting work, there will already be an effective response to the fire. Of the 12 firefighters, six took part in fighting the forest fire that hit the state of British Columbia, in Canada, in August this year.

Firefighters and equipment on arrival at Ibama headquarters in Manaus (Alan Geissler/Revista Cenarium Amazônia)

The National Center for Preventing and Fighting Forest Fires (Prevfogo) is responsible for the policy of preventing and fighting forest fires throughout the country, including activities related to educational campaigns, training and qualification of rural producers and firefighters, monitoring and research.

Fires in numbers

In September, 6,991 hotspots were detected, according to a survey by the Government of Amazonas. The number is 20% lower than in 2022, when 8,659 were detected in the same period. The Amazonas Fire Department operates in 21 municipalities, with almost 1,500 fires fought between July and October this year, in the capital and inland, through operations such as “Aceiro”, which took place in the south of the state, and “Céu Limpo”, in the metropolitan region.

On Monday, Governor Wilson Lima (UB) said that the state has recorded R$17 million in fines throughout Amazonas. The data comes from the Amazonas Environmental Protection Institute (Ipaam). The statement was made during a visit to the state agency’s Center for Environmental Monitoring and Protected Areas.

Read more: AM governor says state fined R$ 17 million for illegal burning

Edited by Jefferson Ramos
Reviewed by Adriana Gonzaga

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