The report by the eventual parliamentary inquiry committee on Pedrógão Grande confirms the concerns of the Victims’ Association regarding the lack of action in the region’s forest.
“[O relatório] confirms the evidence we already had that the forestry issue is completely the same, without any changes since June 17th [de 2017], possibly worse, due to the amount of fuel in the territory, ”said Dina Duarte, president of the Pedrógão Grande Fire Victims Association (AVIPG).
The risk of fire in the Pinhal Interior area “remains very high”, concluded the eventual parliamentary inquiry commission on the Pedrógão Grande fire in 2017, in the report published on Tuesday, in which it recommends “an external global assessment” to the National System for the Defense of the Forest against Fires.
According to Dina Duarte, despite some cleaning work “near the villages and the communication routes”, the territory continues to be marked by the natural regeneration of eucalyptus, a species that is “the queen” in the region.
“Forestry planning is needed and unfortunately what the association confirms is that some owners continue to invest in eucalyptus ”, he noted.
For the president of AVIPG, it is necessary to raise awareness among smallholders, but also a more robust and strong investment for reforestation of the territory, with a view to changing its landscape and investing in native species, normally more resilient to fires.
Dina Duarte also stressed that the association agrees with the recommendation of the commission of inquiry for a new survey on second homes and for their reconstruction to be supported by the State.
“It is important that we have our complete housing stock and full and that brings back the neighbors who came here to spend seasons. The interior needs this ”, he defended.
The draft report, which had deputy Jorge Paulo Oliveira (PSD) as rapporteur, was presented today in the respective committee, advancing with a set of 83 conclusions and 36 recommendations on agriculture, economic activities, forest and housing.