As the country approaches the full dry season where threats of veldt fires are a major concern to the conservation of natural environment, the Cabinet has considered implementation of the 2021 fire season veldt fire management strategies.
The Cabinet Presser on Wednesday hinted that Government through Ministry of Environment will be rolling out the 2021 fire season veldt fire management strategies amid the threatening dangers of fire on national forests, pastures, crop lands, property, infrastructure and food security. Overwhelming grasslands where attributed to the high rainfall pattern.
“The nation is informed that uncontrolled veldt fires remain the most threatening factor on Zimbabwe’s forests, pastures, crop lands, property, infrastructure and food security. This year, the country is generally in the high risk category of 65.2% to the extreme risk of category 24.7% of veldt fires outbreaks countrywide. This is as a result of the good rainfall in the 2020/2021 season,” Cabinet Presser reads.
The strategy will see the government embarking on awareness, sensitization to farmers and education to various communities across the country among other initiatives spotlighted to initiate veldt fire reductions.
“This will entail the following initiatives: conducting a farm level fire awareness blitz to raise awareness and sensitise farmers and communities on the environmental provisions on veldt fire management; carrying out of farm level inspections to monitor compliance to fire preparedness protocols; intensifying fireguard construction; hay baling, thatch grass cutting; and combing for sale for the provisioning of feed and biomass reduction.”
Areas that have been spotlighted to be under threat from veldt fires include Matabeleland North, Matabeleland South, Midlands and Masvingo provinces are at high risk of the veldt fires while Mashonaland West, Mashonaland East, Mashonaland Central and Manicaland Provinces are at extreme risk.