Prevention of forest fires and protection of biodiversity: the main topics of the second side event of the CILIFO Project in the #EUGreenWeek

01.10.2020. Organised by the European Commission, the EU Green Week (#EUGreenWeek) will focus this year on Nature and Biodiversity. Finnova Foundation, one of the beneficiaries of the INTERREG-CILIFO Project, has organised a side event in order to take part of a week that will set a milestone towards the Conferences of the Parties (COP 15) to the Convention on Biological Biodiversity.

On Monday, 28 September 2020, the Iberian Centre for Research and Forest Firefighting (CILIFO) has held the second side event for the CILIFO Project in the framework of the #EUGreenWeek in collaboration with GoHub, the open innovation hub of Global Omnium.

The person charged of the opening of the event was Juan Sánchez Ruiz, director of the Regional Operational Centre (INFOCA) of the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Sustainable Development (Regional Government of Andalusia). He emphasized the importance of the reinforcement of infrastructures jointly used for fighting against forest fires.

In this second event of CILIFO during the EU Green Week, the vice-president of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety and Member of the European Parliament, César Luena, participated talking about the project that is going to be submitted to the European Commission to combat forest fires and preserve biodiversity. Among the measures, Luena talked about the post-fire recovery of the affected areas, the protection of freshwater ecosystems —such as restoring rivers—, the regulation of waters in order to avoid ecological disaster, the legal protection of soils, a specific plan for desertification and a European forest policy. His aim is to create a joint action plan for fighting against climate change and biodiversity.

In the first part of the event about prevention, extinction of forest fires and protection of biodiversity, Ana Lourido from the academic domain (University of Ébora) gave her insight about research and combating forest fires. ‘We have an opportunity to make a qualitative and quantitative leap in the fight against forest fires in order to progress in research.’ Afterwards, Javier Madrigal Olmo, senior scientist of the forest fire lab at the Forest Research Center of INIA spoke about the vulnerability face to forest fires and how science and technology can help prevention. As for Javier Cañas Andreu, director of Innovation Projects at EIT Climate-KIC, pointed that the increase of temperatures, the low rate of rain and the subsequent droughts are some of the causes of forest fires in Andalusia.

The topic of the second part of the event was funding and entrepreneurship. María Gil Cabrera¸ director of GoHub Andalucía, and Juan Viesca, EU Funds director de at Finnova Foundation, talked about financing at the European Union and innovative projects in the forest fire sector. It is worth highlighting that the European Green Deal call is now open for fighting against climate change and making Europe climatically neutral by 2050. Adrián Noheda, director of CILIFO’s Firefighting Open Innovation Lab, and David Páez Rodríguez, director de Business Development at the Technological Corporation of Andalusia, spoke about the opportunities for entrepreneurship at protected forest areas.

The event closed with the intervention of Alejandro García Hernández, deputy director of COR, from the INFOCA Plan (Directorate General for Environmental Management and Protected Areas of the Regional Government of Andalusia), who presented the project FIREPOCTEP. On the other hand, Gustavo Viera Ruiz from GESPLAN talked about the success cases on forest fire management.

COMMON CHALLENGES – SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS (SDGs)

The aim is to address the SDGs 6, 13 and 15 of the UN in order to innovate in the adoption of urgent measures to combat climate change and its effects, as well as to protect, restore and promote the sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, fight against desertification, stop and invert the degradation of soils and stop the biodiversity loss. In addition, the availability and sustainable management of water needs to be guaranteed for fighting climate change.

CONTACT:

Beatriz Martínez Muñoz
European Project Officer and Communication Officer at Finnova Foundation
Beatriz.martinez@finnova.eu