10 años Energylab

FIREPOCTEP launches its activities in Galicia to address the prevention of cross-border forest fires

“It is not enough to prevent the fires of next summer, we must prevent the fires of the next decade.” This was one of the ideas highlighted on the afternoon of this Monday, April 23, within the framework of the regional launch of the FIREPOCTEP+ project carried out at the Museum of Pontevedra, Galicia. The event brought together more than 40 participants, including FIREPOCTEP+ beneficiaries and partners, authorities, forest communities, academics, students and civil society. The objective of this meeting was to share the tasks that are planned to be carried out in the different activities and to present this operation that has a budget of 3.3 million euros and will extend until 2026. FIREPOCTEP+ is co-financed by the European Union through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), within the framework of the Interreg VI-A Spain Portugal Cross-Border Cooperation Program 2021-2027 (POCTEP). The objective of this meeting was to share the tasks that are planned to be carried out in the different activities and to present this operation that has a budget of 3.3 million euros and that will extend until 2026.

The event was headed by the Main Beneficiary, University of Vigo, and had the institutional participation of Manuel Reigosa, rector of said entity, Roberto Carrero, deputy for Cross-border Cooperation and Institutional Relations of the Provincial Council of Pontevedra, Manuel Francisco Gutiérrez, head of the Pontevedra Forest Fire Prevention Service, and José Antonio Vega, former director of the Fire Department of the Lourizán Forest Research Center.


Designated this project of strategic importance by the monitoring committee of the Interreg Spain-Portugal program, FIREPOCTEP+ has among its lines of action the identification of strategic management zones in different pilot areas along the border. These are points that are key in the behavior of large fires and in which preventive action would allow their intensity to be reduced. In a second block of the day, focused on the presentation of the project activities, Juan Picos, project coordinator from the University of Vigo, highlighted the importance of “sowing preventive intelligence in the territory: knowing how to direct preventive actions in those places where be more effective” and manage to implement in these “productive activities that guarantee their long-term maintenance and strengthen the link to the population.” In addition, Francisco Senra, from the Environment and Water Agency of the Government of Andalusia, also participated in this table, who outlined the actions aimed at improving the resilience of the landscape against large storms. Co-financed by the European Union through the Interreg Program VI-A Spain-Portugal (POCTEP) 2021-2027 fires from “participatory actions”; the researcher from the University of Extremadura, Juan Carlos Giménez, who delved into the tasks focused on the mobilization of endogenous resources. Another of the work packages focuses on improving “interoperability” between personnel and has the National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority of Portugal as coordinator, while the one aimed at the “co-creation of innovative solutions” was addressed in this meeting by José Manuel Requena, from the Finnova Foundation.


During Tuesday, April 24, led by the University of Vigo, the beneficiaries of FIREPOCTEP+ visited Figueirido, San Martiño de Vilaboa and Lake Castiñeiras in order to deepen the “smart prevention” work developed in the Pilot Area 3 of FIREPOCTEP+. In addition, the Lourizán Forest Research Center has been visited to learn about the history of the main areas of this pioneering R&D center in the forestry sector, as well as the center’s botanical garden and the various species that make it up.


Public-private collaboration plays a fundamental role in the development of FIREPOCTEP+, which brings together a wide range of public entities, universities, private foundations, technology centers and various committed institutions. This strategic alliance reflects the shared commitment to environmental preservation, strengthening forest fire prevention and the revitalization of rural areas.

Specifically, FIREPOCTEP+ is made up of the Universidade de Vigo, FEUGA, Finnova, CIM Coimbra, CIM Alto Minho, Diputación de Ávila, AMAL, Universidad de Extremadura, Junta de Andalucía, Universidad de Huelva, Universidad de Córdoba, Universidade de Évora, CCDR Algarve, ANEPC – National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority and EnergyLab. The synergy between the beneficiaries offers a comprehensive and multidisciplinary approach, promoting the effectiveness and sustainability of the actions undertaken in this cross-border project.