Remembering Knysna june 2017 –Be ready for the Impact of Climate Change and GIobal Warming


On this day five years ago, South Africa experienced the start of arguably the worst wildfire disaster in its history. The Knysna Fire caused devastation and destruction on a scale that had never been experienced within a local municipality in this country and sadly led to loss of life and the destruction of properties and bulk service infrastructure worth Billions of Rands.

Today, we pay tribute to the brave men and women, the firefighters, who played an instrumental role in assisting the people of Knysna and the Tsitsikamma region. We must not ignore that five years on, communities experience increased exposure to raging fires, exacerbated by changes in climatic conditions like extended, dry, hot spells and fanned by strong, unseasonal winds.

Climate change has resulted in drying and warming trends in many parts of the world; this is exacerbating wildfire risk and climate models predict these conditions will worsen and, in many cases, fire seasons will lengthen, become more extreme and extend into landscapes previously unaffected by wildland fires.

Working on Fire remains committed to playing its role in mitigating efforts to protect our people and our environment against the impact of increasing wildfires brought about by climate change through its community-based fire awareness and education, and integrated fire management programmes and initiatives.