Certainly. Fires allow for new growth; they are the only way some conifers can release their seeds; they return nutrients to the soil; and more.
Yes. If forest fires occurs somewhat regularly–or are planned and controlled–they can prevent rampant fires from destroying forests and can actually help the forest and the subsequent habitats thrive. A US government sanctioned program for planning forest fires began under Clinton’s administration (albeit it is, to this day, a controversial program). Fires help create natural spacing, allowing for sunlight to penetrate and they eliminate the build-up of brush that can lead to massive, uncontrollable fires if not cleared out periodically.
Without forest fires, forests and wooded areas can become too dense with uncontrolled growth. This blocks out sunlight and prevents the growth of new trees and brush, which are essential to the health of the forest. Forest fires done correctly are an example of “out with the old, in with the new”.
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