Forest fires

In so many places on earth forests are burned down to make space for cattle, agriculture, etc. Here on Vanua Balavu every second hill features only blackened tree stumps, the soil is getting washed away and erosion is clearly visible. We have talked to people and apparently there’s no plan behind the fires that are devastating the island–just carelessness and stupidity. We talked to the chief about erosion and the fact that with each rain soil gets washed away, so the island is less fertile and the reefs suffer. As we were buzzing back in the dinghy we noticed yet another column of smoke–a nearby hill was burning all night. Really sad.

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