WWF asks Spain to remove threats to Doñana National Park
A group of Greater flamingos (Phoenicopterus ruber) in a marsh, at sunset, Coto Doñana National Park, Andalucia, Spain.
Responding to the ongoing fires in Doñana National Park, Juan Carlos del Olmo, CEO WWF-Spain, said:
"WWF is deeply concerned about the fire that has been ravaging the forests of Doñana, in southern Spain, since Saturday night. Our thoughts are with the more than 2,000 people that have been forced to flee their homes.
"For many years, WWF has warned of the risk fires pose to the pine forests that surround Doñana National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Lack of governance and limited controls over land use in public forests make the area especially vulnerable to fires. This fire is further evidence of the many threats that surround Doñana National Park, which include overexploitation of groundwater for farming, and industrial projects, such as dredging of Guadalquivir River and the development of underground gas storage.
"While, on this occasion, the fire hasn’t reached the National Park, it has already burnt part of the Doñana protected area, including key habitat for the endangered Iberian Lynx. WWF praises the fantastic work done by the Spanish firefighting crews to control the fire, but calls on the Spanish and Andalusian Government to secure Doñana's long-term future. Decisive action is needed now to remove the many threats that surround Doñana and protect this irreplaceable World Heritage site for future generations."
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