Fake Cemeteries May Help Curb Sprawl in Spain
Peter Walker of The Independentreports that Spanish firefighters have taken a new tack to preserve former forest lands from being overrun with new development by creating empty cemeteries. Following a 2015 law that allowed new development to occur in burned out areas two years after a fire, the Spanish Forest Firefighters National Association (ANBF) started a campaign to protect the areas and to reduce further deforestation in the country. ANBF has taken advantage of Article 50 of Spain's Cemetery Law, which prohibits the construction of new buildings with 300 meters of a cemetery. The campaign is encouraging city councils to protect burned forest land by building faux-cemeteries on the sites.
ANBF spokesman Iñigo Hernandez tells The Independent that the organization hopes the campaign will help to reduce the intentional setting of fires across the country, which between 2000 and 2012 saw forest area twice the size of Luxembourg lost to fire.