More than 104 strong fires have been spreading out in different parts of Lebanon over the past 24 hours, forcing some residents to flee their homes in the middle of the night as the flames reached residential areas.
“Our deepest thoughts are with the Lebanese people who are braving the fires and seeking safety for their loved ones and with the brave firefighters risking their lives to save others,” said Julien Jreissati, campaigner at Greenpeace MENA.
“Whether these fires are of criminal origin or not, their extraordinary intensity and ferocity is being driven, part of it, by climate change. Indeed the unusual heat wave and high temperatures in October have dried out our soils and created the ideal conditions for these unprecedented fires to spread out at such speed and intensity, ” continued Jreissati.“We urge the Lebanese government to declare a state of climate emergency, to develop and implement a national adaptation strategy to the impacts of climate change to build the country’s resilience to such extreme events.“This is not an isolated event as 2019 has been a year of unprecedented forest fires from Siberia to the Amazon, from the Canary Island to Indonesia, sending clear signals that our planet is burning and it is time to act like it” concluded Jreissati
Dania Cherry, Communications Lead, Greenpeace MENA
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Greenpeace International Press Desk, +31 (0)20 718 2470 (available 24 hours), [email protected]