THE public is once again warned against bush fires especially on farms near areas where harvested wood is being turned into charcoal.
Charcoal burners can have their licenses suspended if they are found to be the cause of bush fires.
The office of the Namibia Charcoal Association (NCA) in Otjiwarongo has already received complaints about the first veld fires that occurred in Hochfeld, Kalkfeld, Outjo, and Wilhelmstal. It is a known fact that many veld fires are caused annually by charcoal production.
Last year, the Forestry Directorate introduced new measures for charcoal production that must be adhered to annually, especially during the dry season.
The NCA has called on all charcoal producers to apply these new measures as early as 1 May 2021 because the good growth of grass in large parts of the country poses a massive fire risk this year.
“We appeal to all charcoal producers and non-charcoal producers to familiarise themselves with the veld fire prevention guidelines for charcoal, to jointly manage the risks, and prevent unnecessary veld fires,” the NCA statement reads.
Farmers that observe charcoal producers that do not apply the mentioned measures and where this entails a real fire risk are requested to approach the relevant landowner or charcoal producer.
Where this is not possible or where the conversation did not go according to plan, offenders should be reported to the NCA office on 067 304 220, with photographic evidence, if possible.
The NCA office will pass it on to the relevant regional offices of Forestry, which will then inspect the farms.