EU report: Turkey ranks second most burnt area in wildfires last year
Turkey was the second most affected country by forest fires in terms of burnt area last year, a EU report showed.
In Turkey, 139,503 hectares of land was burned in a total of 2,793 forest fires, according to the “Forest Fires in Europe, Middle East and North Africa 2021” report by EU Joint Research Center, published on Monday.
The report also showed that 91 percent of the fires in Turkey were caused by human activities.
Italy topped the list with the most burnt area in forest fires in 2021.
Last summer, wildfires demolished tens of thousands of hectares of forest in Turkey’s Mediterranean and Aegean provinces with top tourist destinations, killing eight people.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) government was severely criticized for the lack of fire fighting assets, including planes and helicopters, following the fires that have ravaged its southern coastline.
While the number of fires in Turkey did not increased much compared to previous ten years, the total area that was burnt skyrocketed, according to the European report.
Forest fires mostly occurred during the period of March-December, particularly in June, July, August and September, the report showed. July was the highest month with 503 fires that have demolished 104,665 hectares of land.