The director of Emergencies of the Cabildo de Gran Canaria, Federico Grillo, has refuted this Wednesday the “widespread” belief that the fire devastates the mountains and has said that, in the case of Tenerife, “we have not lost it” and there will be areas that they will recover “in a very few months”.
In his last speech as an analyst of the forest fire declared on the island on August 15, Federico Grillo has stated that there is a belief that the mountain areas affected by the flames are devastated “and it is not so.”
In the case of Tenerife, it is a very old island, originated about 12 million years ago in which there were volcanoes and lightning that burned it, disturbances such as snowfall, floods and wind storms and fires are part of these phenomena, has continued the specialist.
The vegetation has a certain adaptation, as demonstrated by the Canary Island pine, a species 30 million years old, older than the Canary Islands, and which arrived on the islands after the ice ages and has remained a relic, as it has adapted very well, has continued.
In the fire in Tenerife, black areas can be observed, which are where the embers fall and generate ignition, with high intensity fire and where the pine forest has burned in the top, so that a large clearing is generated through which the light will enter and from there will come a thicket and regenerate, but they are the parts that have suffered the most damage.
These are the areas where there may be an erosion problem and in which the Cabildo must apply a treatment to try to reduce drag.
Then there are green areas where the damage has been minimal, the needles have been cleared and they will recover in a few months, the specialist in forest fires has considered.
In addition, there are the yellow areas, where the most intense fire has affected the leaves of the pine trees but they have not burned on top, so they will throw away the needles and this will be “very good” because the ground will be covered and will protect from erosion.
In a month or a little more, the black and yellow parts will remain without leaves, but one will not have needles on the ground and the other will, a difference that will mark erosion problems.
Next year both will regrow but it will be more difficult for the one that has suffered the most intense fire, and the pine will resemble a cypress.
The area that is yellow will have a “very high” recovery in one or two years, which will be immediate in the case of the part that has remained green.
It is not a devastating fire, a “megafire” that devastates everything with high intensity, asserted Federico Grillo, who has considered that the fire on the island has attacked 40 percent with high intensity and the rest has been between medium and low intensity.
We must “internalize” this data “so as not to be left with the feeling that we have lost the mountains because it is not a total loss, they will be recovered,” he specified.
Federico Grillo has also pointed out that for months “we will see smoke” inside the mountain but “nothing happens”, because they are fires that remain “asleep, lethargic” in the areas where the fire has passed.