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More than 600 acres of farmland destroyed by fire in Southern Belize 

Posted: Friday, May 24, 2024. 10:20 am CST.

By Zoila Palma Gonzalez: The Toledo District has been ravaged by wildfires, destroying over 600 acres of farmland in the span of three weeks. 

Initial assessments by the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) put the losses at upwards of $3 million.

The devastating fires have affected more than 200 families, almost 1000 residents.

Belmopan Aggregates

Complicating matters, an ongoing drought exacerbates the situation, leaving some villages parched without access to water.

Soaring temperatures and extreme heat have contributed to the ongoing fires. 

The Ministry of Rural Transformation has been delivering water to communities almost daily since their creeks have dried up and river levels near historic lows.

For generations, farmers have resorted to slash-and-burn practices to clear forested areas for cultivation. 

However, this age-old method, once integral to their livelihoods, now stands accused as a primary source for the blazes ravaging their fields.

NEMO Minister Andre Perez and Prime Minister John Briceno assessed the situation and experienced the impact of the fires on farms in Southern Belize and the blazes in Mountain Pine Ridge, Cayo.

 

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