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The Hellenic Institute for the Fire Protection of Structures (ELIPYKA) in collaboration with the Confederation of Fire Protection Associations – Europe (CFPA – E) organized a webinar entitled: Forest fires and buildings resilience, October 21, 2021.

George Mylonakis, making the introduction, referred to the need for a multilevel approach, in response to the question of whether we can do something in Wildland – Urban Interface areas, so that the buildings become more fire resilient.

In particular, he underlined what exactly ELIPYKA is doing with its 7 Commissions, in the direction of this approach.

Dr. Sofia Karma, as a representative of Mr. Efthymios Bakoyannis, Secretary General of Spatial Planning and Urban Environment, of the Ministry of Energy and Environment, gave important information on updating and improving the Fire Protection Regulation.

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Tommy Ardvisson gave an overview of the mission of CFPA-E, with its commissions on Natural Hazards, Guidelines, Training, Marketing & Information and Safety, as well as information on CFPA Ambassadors.

Miguel Vidueira presented CFPA Guideline 61 on Forest Fires, which provides information on:

  • How a fire develops and spreads
  • Forest fire prevention techniques
  • Forest Firefighting
  • Life in Wildland – Urban Interface areas, providing practical advice for carrying out activities in the forest and instructions for the minimum distances of structures from it, the distances between chimneys and trees, etc.


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Dr. Guido Zaccarelli underlined the dramatic increase of forest fires in Italy, from 2017 onwards and referred to the causes of them, with a detailed statistical analysis and rich evidence.

He then presented a multi-level action plan, of the Italian Administration, which consists of:

  • study and analysis for prevention
  • development of trans-European synergies
  • organization for optimal use of the existing infrastructure, the development of technologies for detection and suppression of fires
  • Suppression with severe law enforcement and penalties for arson-related crimes.

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Dr. Mingyi Wang, referred to the strategic focus on “Implementing Adaptation Solutions to the Impact of Climate Change and Sustainability in Managing Extreme Weather Risk” at all levels (local, regional, national and European).

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Finally, Dr. Yiannis Kontoulis, starting with the question of how we can save lives and property in Wildland – Urban Interface areas, referred to the views of experts, which are summarized on:

  • securing access to these areas,
  • the use of non-combustible materials A1 and A2 in nearby buildings
  • assessing these areas from fire hazard, creating fire hazard maps

Fire hazard maps, combined with seismic hazard maps and energy saving climate zones, could be what he called the “Resilience Triangle.”

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