Bolivia Forest Fires - 20 Aug 2002


The United Nations Resident Coordinator's office in Bolivia informs that a massive fire broke out on 17 August in the forest of the Sama Hills National Park, located in the Cercado province of the Tarija department in southern Bolivia. The fires started apparently caused by slash-and-burn activities, a common traditional practice, and were fueled by strong winds. They are now spreading toward Tarija City.

So far between 15,000 and 20,000 ha have been burned. The fires have affected the settlements of Sama, Tucumilla, Iscayachi, Lazareto, San Andres, Victoria, Coimata, Erquis Norte and Sur.