Fires continue to rage across Argentina

Forest fires continue to rage across Argentina, with high temperatures and winds helping them to spread, authorities said Wednesday.

According to the National Fire Management Service (SNMF), the provinces of Corrientes, Córdoba, Misiones and Río Negro have active fires.

But authorities said they have managed to control some outbreaks across the country.

In recent weeks, the South American nation has been hit by drought and an extreme heat wave, creating challenging conditions for firefighters to extinguish the fires.

According to authorities, a fire also remains active in Ituzaingó in the north of Corrientes province which borders parts of Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay.

Fires in the town of Aristóbulo del Valle in the northern province of Misiones also remain active alongside those in the southern province of Río Negro and the area of Bariloche which began on Dec. 7 following a lightning strike as well as fires in the department of Independencia in Córdoba.

Authorities said some fires in the northern province of Santa Fe have been contained.

But they said there are fire outbreaks in the provinces of Santa Fe, Jujuy, Salta, Neuquén, San Luís, Tierra del Fuego, Formosa, Catamarca and Chaco.

The government of President Alberto Fernández has pledged to provide around 800 million pesos (US$7.7 million) to the provinces of Río Negro, Neuquén, Chubut and Misiones, which have been struck the hardest by fires.

Since December, fires in the province of Río Negro (Patagonia) have consumed more than 6,000 hectares.

In late December, the federal government confirmed that the fires in Patagonia are associated with climate change.

With high temperatures during Argentina’s summer, firefighters have been working across the country in recent weeks to combat fires that have struck nine of the country’s 23 provinces.

On Jan. 12, Argentina’s federal government declared a fire “emergency” for a one-year period due to the ongoing situation.

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