TATENDA CHIKARA IN MASVINGO
Veld fires destroyed 82 534,08 hectares (ha) of land in Masvingo Province this year, nearly double the 2021 figures, the Environmental Management Agency (EMA) has said, amid calls for combined forces to save the environment.
“This year was our bad year in terms of veld fires as a province. We lost 82 534.08ha of land that was ravaged by veld fires. When comparing the year 2022 and 2021, you would see that in 2021 we lost 46 560.28ha,” EMA provincial officer, Somandla Ndlovu said.
He said the veld fires have led to the loss of life in the province.
“We also remember that in 2022, we have a juvenile aged 3 years who lost life due to veld fires in Gutu. We also lost Panyanda lodge lot 2 in Constance Farm,” Ndlovu said.
He said the major causes of most veld fires were hunting, land preparation and burning rubbish.
Ndlovu said EMA with other stakeholders to curb veld fires.
“As EMA, working with different government departments such as police, local authorities, local leadership and environmental sub committees in different wards were doing many initiatives to curb veld fires. We gave 320 fire orders provided for by the law seeking individuals to establish fire guards before the veld fire season begins,” he said.