Universitat de València strongly regrets the major forest fires which continue to burn the Valencian natural heritage. In its Statutes, UV considers ‘the ecological advocacy of the environment.’ This woods and bushes heritage has an outstanding natural beauty which is one of the key values on which the Valencian identity is founded, besides its ecological value and its relevance as endogenous economic resource. Its preservation is a collective responsibility, but it is particularly the public administration’s responsibility.
Research studies carried out at Universitat de València during the last decades show that an structural change is undergoing. This change has led to a new paradigm of the Valencian inland territories as a result of serveral factors. On the one hand, the climatic changes are affecting the geochemical cycles affecting the flora and fauna.
On the other hand, socio-economic changes, among them the use of land changes, the ageing of the population, the lack of people working in forests and agricultural environment, cause a progressive abandonment of traditional agriculture, ranching and forestry.
The fires of the last days are bigger than the fires inherent to Mediterranean ecosystem, which usually lack of this devastating nature. The fires, which have ended with thousands of hectares and have affected several towns and villages in the natural area of Macizo del Caroig and Sierra Calderona, are due to adverse climatic circumstances, abandonment of these natural places, and a weak public management.
Universitat de València has followed these fires’ evolution and has been in contact with the people in charge to be informed at all times. It has offered the facilities of Rector Peset hall of residence to host, if necessary, the people involved in this disaster.
Universitat de València is also willing to carry out actions to inform and raise awareness on the problem of forest fires, especially in the areas concened. At the same time, the theatre company Escena Erasmus is goint to end its tour in some of the towns involved in the fires.
With the goal of raising money for the recovering of the natural patrimony, Universitat de València will open a bank account where all the citizens will be able to contribute.
UV aims to increase its cultural collaboration with these areas as well by means of seminars and exhibitions which will take place there. Figthing agains fires and environment degradation in general requires everybody’s efforts – public administration, citizens, companies, unions, ecology and cultural organizations, etc. –, and universities can play an important role. Universitat de València offers the work of its researchers (botanists, zoologists, geologists, historians, among others) in order to collaborate with the technicians in the public administrations.
The Executive Council of Universitat de València, in name of all the institution, wishes to express its deep condolences to the family of the pilot who passed away while trying to extinguising the fire. Universitat de València wishes to show solidarity to the people who have suffered any damage to properties because of the fire.
Last update: 4 de july de 2012 13:47.News release