La Frontera (El Hierro) (EFE) from Next Generation Funds.
The initiative, together with other lines of aid for this matter on the island, was presented by José Antonio Valbuena, Minister of Ecological Transition, Fight against Climate Change and Territorial Planning of the autonomous government and the president of the El Hierro Cabildo, Alpidio Armas.
Valbuena explained that this project seeks, through the implementation of sustainable forestry, the reactivation of areas that have suffered forest fires in the past, also revitalizing economic activity and avoiding depopulation problems.
In addition, there is interest in the recovery of the ecological integrity of the ecosystem, including the perspective of adaptation to climate change and involving the local population during the execution of the action and, later, with future projections during use, he added.
The project, which will run until 2025, proposes the hiring of people preferably residing in El Hierro and specifically in El Pinar, as well as an inclusive objective for the insertion of women in the world of work, and will focus its actions on the affected areas by the last fires that occurred, especially those of 2003 and 2006, which affected public utility forests and other adjoining areas classified as between urban and forest in this municipality of El Hierro.
The actions will consist of silvicultural treatment in forest masses, pruning of shrub and tree vegetation up to 2 meters high, felling of tree roots, limbing, bucking, wood preparation and crushing or chipping of derived plant remains.
The president of El Hierro pointed out that the Island Council has considered climate change “as one of the great environmental challenges that we are already facing”, so that the Sustainable Forest Management Plan is the planning axis that favors the resilience of our forests in the face of these climatic impacts, especially due to the change in the behavior regime of the most dangerous and uncontrollable forest fires.
“For this reason, this project is oriented, among other aspects, at reducing and improving the management of forest fire risk in the town of El Pinar, especially in its urban-forest interface,” he added.
Prevention in these areas of the town has as its main objective the creation of controlled risk spaces as well as favoring the recovery of abandoned agricultural spaces, continued Armas, who explained that this action does not mean that there will not be fires, but rather that in the event of a risk for people, it is guaranteed that the smallest portion of territory possible and with the least degree of affection.
The regional councilor also reviewed some of the Cabildo and City Council projects in which his department works in order to execute them through European funds from the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan.
Among them, he cited the regularization and adaptation of the remote management of hydraulic water infrastructures, which will foreseeably have 1.8 million euros in charge of the PERTE for the digitalization of the water cycle, which will make El Hierro the first island with full digitalization of its hydraulic and supply infrastructures in the Canary Islands.
He also stressed that the Cabildo may request up to 800,000 euros, and the municipalities of La Frontera, El Pinar and Valverde a similar amount to be distributed among the three consistories, for the promotion of self-sufficiency of public administrations, within the framework of the Strategy of Sustainable Energy in the Islands.
In terms of biodiversity, the Government and the Cabildo signed the agreements already approved, for the restoration of habitats of four species of threatened flora in El Hierro for a value of 121,605.16 euros and for the realization of the service of auxiliary strips of forest track in Monte ” Colgados de Binto” endowed with an amount of 319,115.14 euros.
The president of the El Hierro Cabildo also announced that, after more than 15 years in which the Recovery Plan for the Giant Lizard of El Hierro ended the period of validity of its actions, the drafting of a new plan for the adoption has begun again of conservation measures so that between now and 2030 it can cease to form part of the list of species considered to be in greater danger of extinction, and for this it has the advice and subsequent financing of the Regional Government’s Department of Ecological Transition. EFE