As firefighting experts around the world gather in Canada to discuss their efforts to reduce the threat of wildfires, a new Canadian study says that they should be more involved in the battle against water.
The research by Canadian National University researchers has found that the majority of Canadians, about 60 per cent, don’t understand how firefighting works and that they are likely to be more influenced by what they are seeing than those who understand it.
In an email to CBC News, the study’s co-author and a professor at the university’s environmental studies program, said the research indicates that Canadians do not understand how wildfires affect water resources and that people are not fully equipped to fight them.
“In general, people are more interested in what is happening on the ground, which is to say, the people that are fighting fires,” said Dr. John Pang, a professor in the university environmental sciences program.
“They are interested in how the water resources are being used.
They are not interested in the people who are involved in that.”
According to the research, about half of Canadians say they do not know enough about firefighting to make an informed decision on the issue.
“This is a real problem in Canada, especially in rural communities.
It’s one of the reasons why they don’t get it from us,” said Pang.
The report is the latest in a series of recent studies to highlight the lack of understanding among Canadians about water.
Earlier this month, a survey of 1,400 people in British Columbia revealed that Canadians are only half as likely as Canadians to understand that they need to treat and clean drinking water for drinking and cooking purposes.
The Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIAR) has also warned that a lack of information and knowledge is a key barrier to addressing the water crisis.
“There are some significant challenges that we are going to need to overcome in order to get to the point where we can actually make meaningful progress,” CIAR’s executive director, David MacKinnon, told CBC News in an interview.
“What we need to do is educate people about the water supply in their communities and in their cities, and that’s really where we are lacking.”