3

One (badly written) article from 2009 seems to suggest that prescribed burns are illegal in Russia. Is that (still) the case? And if, to the contrary, they are legal, who can authorize them?

What I could find out from a more recent (and somewhat better written) 2015 article in the same venue:

Starting with the first East-West international conference “Fire in Ecosystems of Boreal Eurasia” (Goldammer & Furyaev 1996) and the Fire Research Campaign Asia-North (FIRESCAN) (FIRESCAN Science Team 1996, 2013) a dialogue with the forestry authorities of Russia (and the predecessor administration in the former Soviet Union, the State Forest Committee) has been initiated to replace the fire exclusion policy in the protected zone of the Russian Federation, Mongolia and Kazakhstan by an integrated fire management approach, which would include the use of natural fire and prescribed burning (Goldammer 2013a). Between 2008 and 2013 three major scientifictechnical events have taken place in Mongolia and Russia. The First International Central Asian Wildland Fire Conference “Wildland Fires in Natural Ecosystems of the Central Asian Region: Ecology and Management Implications” was held in Mongolia in 2008 and had significant impact on the review of past approaches in forest and fire management and on the ongoing process to formulate fire management policies in the region (Byambasuren & Goldammer 2013). In 2012 and 2013 two “International Fire Management Weeks” were organized in Krasnoyarsk Region, Russia, and resulted in the formulation of recommendations for adapting the fire management policy of the country with reference to the use of prescribed fire, allowing natural wildfires to burn within prescription and to take advantage of natural regeneration processes.1 The aspect of changing fire regimes as a consequence of climate change and land-use change has been addressed in a dedicated conference in 2013 and resulted in a strong warning to the governments of the region that the changes ahead may result in a threat by dangerous fires in future.

That seems to suggest that at least until 2013 prescribed burn was either not legal or not practiced in Russia. So has anything changed in that regard?

3

It is legal, by Ministry of Nature order from 24th September 2019, but under strict control, by specially educated people, and only as part of other counter-fire measures, such as fire strips.

Should be noted, that order restricts firing only grass, not setting trees on fire:

  1. Факторами, исключающими проведение профилактических выжиганий на участке, являются:

    а) наличие многоярусного строения древостоя, которое создает условия для развития верхового пожара;

translated as:

Factors that preclude preventive burning on the site are:

a) the presence of a multi-tiered structure of the forest stand, which creates the conditions for the development of a riding fire;

Paragraphs 14 and 15 also specifies forests, where such measures cannot be applied:

  1. Профилактические выжигания не применяются в лесах, относящихся к категориям защитных лесов в соответствии с пунктами 1, 2 части 2 статьи 111 Лесного кодекса Российской Федерации 2.
  2. Профилактические выжигания не рекомендуется применять в лесах, относящихся к категориям защитных лесов в соответствии с пунктами 3, 4 части 2 статьи 111 Лесного кодекса Российской Федерации 3.

translated as:

  1. Preventive survival in forests related to the categories of protective forests in accordance with clause 1, 2 of part 2 of article 111 of the Forest Code of the Russian Federation 2.
  2. Preventive survival is not recommended for use in forests belonging to the categories of protective forests in accordance with clause 3, 4 of part 2 of article 111 of the Forest Code of the Russian Federation 3.

Protective forest is an (mostly) artifically created forest, which protects some natural or unnatural object. For example such forest may protect river banks from destruction.

Also, it is widely presented as 'protective forest strips' - along fields or railway - to protect both from wind. It is enough widespread thing in Russia and China. It is not widespread-used in the West, maybe because of that I do not see english wiki page about it.

| improve this answer | |
  • Could you also clarify what paragraphs 14 and 15 of the same order refer to? Google translates 14 as "Preventive burning is not applied in forests belonging to the categories of protective forests [...]" – Fizz Apr 29 at 11:53
  • @Fizz, just a moment – user2501323 Apr 29 at 11:54
  • 2
    In fact, in Russia (I've never been to China, so sadly cannot say from myself) when you go by train on plains(for example, in european part of Russia) - most of the time you see not fields/grass, but a protective forest strip. – user2501323 Apr 29 at 12:07

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