Learning to manage fire outside of Mushie, Democratic Republic of the Congo
The U.S. Forest Service International Programs, through USAID’s Central Africa Regional Program for the Environment, is working in Central Africa to train communities on improved fire management. Uncontrolled fires pose a huge threat to Central African forests and can cause large releases of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere when burned, further exacerbating the effects of climate change. However, fire within forest-savannah mosaic landscapes in the Congo Basin can be both a management tool as well as a threat. If used in a sustainable manner, fire can help maintain pastureland and protect forests, farms, plantations, and villages. If used haphazardly, intentional and accidental fires can burn out of control, impacting large areas and threatening villages, farms, and forests. Here, during a trailing in May 2017, a local “fire brigade” is trained in how to control and suppress fire so that they can better deal with uncontrolled fires in their communities.