Forest Fires Part II

Read these two opinions about building houses in wildfire areas then tell us your reaction in the comments.
“People should never be allowed to build in places that are in danger of wildfires. Too many people die, including firefighters. The taxpayers have to pay for a large firefighting department. When the houses are destroyed, the insurance companies have to pay. Why build there when you know it will be destroyed eventually? After the fires here last year, the police, fire department, scientists and survivors all recommended the government to discourage people from rebuilding homes in the area.”
Kay S., Melbourne
“If you say we can’t build in the forests, then next it will be that you can’t build near the beach because of tsunamis… or in Oklahoma because of tornados… or maybe everyone will have to leave Japan because of the earthquakes! Don’t be silly, be smart. There are many ways to prevent disaster through forest management and fire prevention.”
Mel G., Strath Lake

About mattsclass

Teacher of English as a foreign language in Tokyo

21 responses to “Forest Fires Part II

  1. Mayuko Th5

    I see that both of these people have a point. But I’d prefer the first opinion. Basically, I think that every person has every right to live wherever they want but if it has anything to do with someone’s life, it should be disouraged.
    Though simultaneously, I get what the 2nd person wants to say. If we are running away from every natural disasters, we won’t have a place to live on Earth.
    But I think that if we don’t want to become the victim of the forest fire or if you don’t want to hurt someone by your desire of living in the forest, we should protect ourselves and them by living away from forests and that would be a good start.

  2. Sotaro M4

    I think the first person makes sense and money and lives shouldn’t be wasted if we can predict the disaster.But the second person makes sense too;it’s dangerous anywhere on the earth.
    I think when making houses near forests,it should be made safer.For example,cutting down the trees near the houses where people live might be one way.Maybe not making the houses with wood will be another way.Rules have to be made in order to make people understand the danger of forest fires.

  3. Sotaro M4

    I want to apologize about not doing the homework last week.I had forgot to do it(;_;)

  4. Toko M4

    To be honest, I can’t decide which opinion is right or wrong.
    It surely isn’t a good idea to built a house when you know it might be destroyed, especially if it might cost people’s lives. Financial problems are important too. Money that has to be spent when the disasters happen could be used for more necessary purposes. For example, taxes could be used for buiding a public facility.
    On the other hand, I agree with the second opinion too. It would be endless if we kept running away from disasters.
    I used to think that everyone should have a right to live where they wish to. But now that I’ve read the first opinion, I’m not so sure about this anymore.
    The best solution would be to prevent getting dameges from disasters but that would require money and work too.
    I think there needs to be government regulations about living in or near forests. But when doing this, they shouldn’t simply restrict people from living there, but consider different cases and be flexible towards them too.

  5. Toko M4

    I’m sorry!
    I noticed I misspelled “damages”!

  6. Tomomi M5

    I can understand both opinions, but I think the second one is better. It’s because I think we always have possibility of fire even if we live in the city with few trees. So, if we can’t build houses near the forests because of the danger of forestfire, we can’t build houses in the city, neither. And then we have no place to live!
    We can reduce the damage of wildfire through forest management or fire prevention, so we should think about how to do so rather than excessively regulate the place to build houses.

  7. Shiori M5

    I agree with second person’s opinion.
    I understand that wildfires cause serious problems, but the same thing can be said for tsunamis, tornadoes, earthquakes, and other natural disasters. There would be no place for us to live if we try to avoid all of them.
    I know that it is very difficult for human beings to control nature. But I think there are some ways to prevent natural disasters. So, I think what we need to do is not recommending the government to discourage people from living near the forest, but trying to think about the strategy to prevent disasters.

    Shiori M5

  8. Konomi M5

    Hey Matt.

    I totally agree to the latter opinion.
    we have right to live anywhere.
    however I understand the first ones opinion as well.

    What we can do is to warn people, maybe we can show people-who wants to live near the forest-the pictures of forest fires. and then they can decide to live in or not.

    I am not saying that people should die or we shouldn’t help people. what I want to say is that people can choose by themselves and they have to be responsible for that decision.

    See you 🙂

    Konomi M5

  9. Momo

    I mostly agree to the second person.
    But it depends on how often wildfires happen.
    People should not build in places that have wildfires every year.

  10. Maho M4

    My opinion is similar to the second one, but I think the first one has a point too.
    If there are so many forest fires(much more than tsunamis or tornadoes or earthquakes), then living in those areas would be wasting lives and money that could be saved.
    But not all forest fires are necessarily “natural” disasters. Some could be prevented if we are more careful. I think there should be regulations about building houses in such areas.

  11. Shun M5

    I think people should not build there houses where they know that there will be a danger of forest fires.
    We know that place near the sea or forest has a danger of natural disaster so if you can’t be responsible for all the damage you will have,you shouldn’t live around there.

  12. nanako M5

    I agree with the second opinion.

    I think people should be able to live wherever they want to. But people who choose to live in dagerous places should take responsibilities. If they chose to live in the forest, they shouldn’t blame firefighters for not extinguishing the fire. If they chose to live near the beach, they should evacuate every time there is an evacuation call.

    In my opinion, why would anyone want to live in a dagerous place anyway?? Why would you want to live waters that might flood your house and wash you away?? Why would you want to live near trees that might help burn your house and hide scary animals like bears?? I would choose to live in a peaceful suburban place like Hamura!!

  13. Shihiko M5

    I understand the opinions of both sides. However I’d rather agree with the second one.

    Forest fires are dangerous, but many other natural disasters, such as tsunamis and tornados can harm us as well. We can only live in limited areas if we want to prevent them!

    But we should urge the government to let people know the danger of living near forests. Also, people have to be responsible for their decision to live there, and take measures to prevent forest fires.


  14. Olga

    I agree with the second opinion.
    It’s true that there is a some danger, but isn’t it the same in the other places? In fact, you can live in a big city but never can be sure that some crazy freak won’t set fire to your house.

    Olga M4

  15. kenken M5

    I think people have the right to live in where they like,but they also have responsibilities to protect the environment around where they live.

  16. misato M5

    I understand both of the opinions but I prefer the former one, people should be banned to build their houses near dangerous areas such as tsunami area or forest fire area
    by government or refrain from building by themselves.

    I would not have said so 2 months ago but after I saw the shocking picture of tsunami,
    I cant say that its a good thing to live in dangerous place.
    However at the same time I dont think every one knew they lived in dangerous area.

    people have rights to appreciate information
    about their living area , especially about their security one.
    government should tell them.

  17. Yuki Th5

    I agree with the second opinion. I think there are no places that are completely safe. People have the rights to live in wherever they want to. But people who want to live in a dangerous place should be aware all the time.

  18. Kanako Th5

    I can’t decide which opinion is right, but I agree with the second one. I have two reasons.

    One reason is that some people love and long to live in nature, so people around them should respect their thoughts in a respect of human rights.
    Another is that there should be a disaster even if we live in a city.
    Though we have few ways to prevent natural disasters, those who decide to live forests should prepare for emergency and be more careful.

  19. Marie Th5

    Hi Matt!

    I agree with the second opinion. It is true that discouraging people from living near forests is the best way for saving money and lives but if we do that, there would be no place to live.
    I think we should let people live wherever they want to. But those who choose to live in dangerouse places have to be responsible for their decisions and be aware how dangerous natural desasters are.

  20. Kyoko Th5

    I agree with the second one. I think it is their own responsibility whether they choose to live near forest, beach or even Japan. But I still think that the government should warn people who wants to live there. After that it is there choice.

    See you soon!

  21. Ai Th5

    Surely, forest fire is dangerous and we have to pay a lot once it happens. However, I think people still have right to live in/around forests. As second opinion suggests, every place is dangerous in its own way. If we want to live in a perfectly safe place, we can live nowhere. So, to ban building houses in/around forests is not a good idea.

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