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The Explainer: How does Ireland and the EU fight wildfires?

Marcin Pater, an emergency response officer at DG ECHO’s Emergency Response Coordinate Centre, and Pádraic Fogarty, campaigns officer with the Irish Wildlife Trust explore the issue of wildfires from both an Irish and European perspective. What is being done to help country’s battle these fires, and what type of impact have we seen on the ground in Ireland?

SUMMER IS APPROACHING, which means rising temperatures and an increased threat of wildfires.

Although Ireland is not immune to this phenomenon, other parts of Europe have experienced the true devastation this type of fire can cause.

Thousands of hectares can be left in ruin, lives lost, and the livelihoods of thousands impacted.

On this week’s episode of The Explainer, supported by the European Commission’s European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (DG ECHO), we’re joined by two guests to discuss Europe’s response to these events and the local impact wildfires can have in Ireland.

We speak to Marcin Pater, an emergency response officer at DG ECHO’s Emergency Response Coordinate Centre, who shares first-hand experience of what a ‘mega fire’ is like, explains how DG ECHO works to provide countries with the resources they need to fight wildfires, and highlights the growing threat Europe faces from these blazes.

Pádraic Fogarty, campaigns officer with the Irish Wildlife Trust, looks at the issue through an Irish prism. Wildfires here are not part of the natural ecosystem but have become more common in recent years. What can be done to tackle uncontrolled gorse burning, and what type of damage has it caused to Ireland’s environment?

The Explainer / SoundCloud

This episode was created by presenter Sinéad O’Carroll and producer Nicky Ryan.

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