The Porto Bay Group has donated two plots of land to the Region for their tree felling and fire break project. The project aims to acquire, clear and reforest 640 hectares of land, install a 10.5 km pipeline and 25 fire hydrants throughout Caminho dos Pretos (Choupana area) as well as open 40 km of forest paths costing a total of 8.3 million euros.
According to Susana Prada, the Regional Secretary for Environment, Natural Resources and Climate Change, 30% of the land is undergoing clearing work; while the installation of the tank, pipeline and hydrant will be completed by the end of 2021.
Once the areas are cleared of invasive species, which are both susceptible and vulnerable to forest fires, new more fire-resistant hygrophilous leafy trees, such as oak, chestnut, birch, European beech and indigenous species will be planted in their place.
In a speech, Susana Prada said that through doing this ‘the Regional Government continues the implementation of its forest fire prevention policy, not only ‘safeguarding our natural environmental heritage but, above all, as a protective measure for our population and their assets. This necessary work will reduce the risk of fire, increase the safety of the population of Funchal and create safer, more fire-resistant forest areas.’
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