Home » Chile is burning, at the hands of man and because of the climate

Chile is burning, at the hands of man and because of the climate

by admin
Chile is burning, at the hands of man and because of the climate

The emotion and condolences for the over 130 victims of the enormous fire that devastated the Valparaíso region in Chile last week are still strong. A landscape that has now turned to ash. We question ourselves about causes and responsibilities

More than 40 thousand people are directly affected. And in addition to the dead, there are dozens of people missing and thousands of homes destroyed. According to the Servicio Médico Legal of the Chilean Ministry of Justice, just 40 of the 130 deceased have been identified. To give an identity to all the others, the authorities will have to compare the genetic material provided by the relatives of the missing with that of the victims.

Between Monday 5 and Tuesday 6 February, as the number of victims continued to grow, President Gabriel Boric declared national mourning. The speech of the head of state then touched on the delicate topic of the origin of fires, too often caused by human intervention: «It is difficult to think that such miserable and heartless people could exist, capable of causing so much death and pain. But if these people exist, we will look for them. They will have to face the brunt of the law.”

A few days later, on February 9, Monsignor Jorge Velasco, bishop of Valparaíso, issued a message of condolence and closeness to the population: «Visiting our affected communities I witnessed the pain that thousands of families are experiencing. Many mourn family members who are no longer with us. Others are helpless before those who have lost everything they have worked hard for over the years – and it continues – Many families of our communities, pastoral workers, relatives of priests of this diocese, members of our educational communities have lost their homes and many of them are in a delicate state of health.”

In the midst of so much pain, however, a great work of solidarity is also making its way: hundreds of volunteers, in fact, are helping the victims, both in clearing the rubble and in distributing basic necessities. Together with Caritas Chile and Caritas Valparaiso, a national collection has been established for the victims and for those who no longer have anything.

See also  MotoGP, Portuguese GP (Portimao) 2024: qualifying highlights and poles

The devastating images of these fires in Chile have gone around the world and have raised many questions. The main causes, in fact, are linked to strong winds and high temperatures, but also to high population density and drought. In fact, Chile is going through an unprecedented water crisis which has now continued for over 15 years.

The Valparaíso fires were particularly devastating even when compared to similar events that have occurred recently in other countries. Last August, the city of Lahaina on the island of Maui in Hawaii was partially destroyed, killing 100 people. In Europe, the worst after 2000 were those in the summer of 2018 around the Greek town of Mati, near Athens, where 101 people died.

According to a Greenpeace report, too Italy is “A country that burns”. And climate change contributes to that mix of heat, wind and drought that favors fires (but often caused by man). There is also another explanation for the correlation between fires, seen more broadly, and climate change study published in 2022 by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP). The estimates were clear already two years ago: the number of extreme fires increased by 14 percent. An estimate destined to grow in this decade and not to stop easily. This is why governments should come together and make truly sustainable decisions.

You may also like

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More

Privacy & Cookies Policy