The healing power of fire

By Matt Simmons
The Narwhal
June 1, 2024
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

In the Line of Fire, a series that digs into what is being done to prepare for — and survive — wildfires. Bringing back ancient Indigenous fire practices helps restore cultural connections, heal the land and strengthen communities. On Gitanyow lands, restorative fire brings people together and mitigates increasingly intense and widespread wildfires driven by climate change. …Setting fires to fight fires may seem counterintuitive as wildfires across Canada increase in size and intensity, but the method is backed by decades of research and on-the-ground trials — and thousands of years of Indigenous science. In B.C., the government’s wildfire department is teaming up with First Nations to support cultural burns and other ways of using fire for the common good. Planned burns like the one on Gitanyow lands present a different way to think about fire and an opportunity to help meet the climate emergency head-on by mitigating the impacts of wildfires and restoring balance in forest ecosystems.

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