Stop the Harmful Forms of Prescribed Burnings!

The international public campaign of the International Socio-Ecological Union







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Objectives and Proposals of the Campaign


The problem of prescribed burning has a complex and complicated character. The position of the campaign considers the obvious catastrophic consequences of prescribed burning practice, which can be assumed based on the complex of its negative characteristics. We suppose that prescribed burning makes a significant negative contribution to such global problems as biodiversity loss, climate change, degradation of natural ecosystems, soil degradation, chemical pollution of the environment, wildfires, public health. These problems do not leave the agenda of the United Nations, international environmental organizations and the governments of most of the countries in the world. However, contribution of prescribed burning to these problems is not widely known and is not discussed in society. On the contrary, the prescribed burning industry is supported at various levels. At the same time, there are no published scientific papers which prove by scientific adequate methods the benefits of prescribed burning for any purpose, or at least which show the absence of damage to nature and economy from burning practice. There are also no open databases that collect information about the conducted prescribed burnings that could be studied and analyzed (all data about prescribed burns are hidden from the public control).


The facts considered in the position of the campaign allow to conclude that the apologists of prescribed burning industry are working to destroy the biodiversity, natural ecosystems, soils and climate on the planet. The prescribed burning activity is also increasing wildfires, worsening the health and well-being of the people. At the same time, those people propose the prescribed burning practice as a great benefit for nature and people. They reject and even ridicule requests for scientific evaluation of burnings consequences and hide data on the scale of the burning industry..


Therefore, the main specificities of the intentional burning problem around the world are the following:


  • This problem has a very long history that stretches tens of thousands of years (since primitive times, when people learned to use fire in their culture). The objectives of the “Stop the Harmful Forms of Prescribed Burning!” campaign focus on the current phase of the development of the problem of intentional burning, which began in the middle of the XX century, on the phase of its development in the form of a scientific and practical paradigm of prescribed burning (that is, its approval by science), its spreading to regions that have been free from burning in recent centuries.

  • This problem is not known in the world community, it is not recognized as a severe problem that exists and needs to be solved. Moreover, the practice of prescribed burning is presented by its apologists as something opposite, as a benefit for nature and people. Probably some forms of prescribed burning can be used further, but not in the harmful methodology and the lack of open database of conducted burnings, as is happening now in all countries. Finding acceptable forms of burning is also part of the campaign's tasks.

  • There are no open summary databases on prescribed burnings conducted in the world that can be easily studied and analyzed. There is no public and scientific independent control of the prescribed burning industry.


Here we considered our proposals (they are also the goals of the campaign) about what steps should be done at the first stage to solve the complex of problems associated with prescribed (and other intentional) burnings in the world.



To raise and openly discuss in the world community the catastrophic negative consequences of prescribed burning industry considered in the campaign’s position.

The full text of this proposal is available here



To launch a series of independent scientific studies of the scale, geography, methodology, and negative consequences of prescribed burnings implemented in the world.

The full text of this proposal is available here



To organize a public and scientific independent control of prescribed burning industry in each country where it is used.

The full text of this proposal is available here



To launch a creation of an open access international summary georeferenced database of all lands passed by prescribed burnings.

The full text of this proposal is available here



To terminate the harmful forms of prescribed burnings in all countries.

The full text of this proposal is available here



To determine of compromise harmless forms of prescribed burning, and focus the attention of society on them as an acceptable alternative to destructive forms of burning.

The full text of this proposal is available here


Proposal -7

To achieve recognition of the harmful forms of prescribed burns as an ECOCIDE phenomenon. To achieve recognition of the phenomenon of ecocide as an international crime.

The full text of this proposal is available here


A statement of all objectives and proposals of the campaign can be found in Part II of the campaign's position: DOCX,PDF.


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