CONTROLLED BURN FOR INCREASING BIODIVERSITY (3070 characters) A controlled or prescribed burn is a wildfire set intentionally for purposes of forest protection management. It may be used for farming, prairie restoration and wildfire’s prevention. The latest has been considered by EFI - European Forest Institute - one of the best preventing solution and has been implemented by the EU civil protection mechanism in the most affected European member states. In Portugal, the ICNF - Instituto da Conservação da Natureza e das Florestas - is responsible for managing and planning prescribed burns. Summer wildfires represent a serious threat for National native forests’ ecological equilibrium all over Portugal [see EFFIS data - The European Forest Fire Information System A/N]. In burnt areas few trees are able to grow from the impoverished soil - except for some pyriscence genera which have adapted to wildfire such us Pinus, Cupressus and Picea. Thereafter other plants and shrubs can easily spread in new open areas without finding much competition for both nutrients and sunlight. For this reason a different type of prescribed burn is often used in order to diminish the impact of low shrubs, in particular broom Genisteae. The organisations part of the European Nature 2000 network - such us Montis and Plantar Uma Árvore - are actively using controlled burns to manage broom Genisteae’s spread and let new planted trees have more probabilities of survival by increasing growth’s speed. The best solution would be to manually remove undesired shrubs and vegetation but this operation has much higher costs in terms of personnel, time and effort. These controlled burns - for the purpose of forest conservation - are usually performed during winter or spring to prevent the soil from being impoverished. The weather conditions are very important to decrease the energy released by combustion, with mild or low temperature and with light to moderate winds. What is achieved is a decrease in thinner fuels (leaves, twigs, bark, dead cover) without the present vegetation burning deeply and without the seeds and buds of the plants being particularly affected. In these areas new trees are planted closer to one another to prevent shrubs and bushes from excessively regrowing and creating shade. For broom Genisteae is highly resilient it is necessary to repeat the operations in few years’ time (usually four years after a previous controlled burn). This practice has been successfully carried out, together with forest conservation activities and represent a valid solution to increase the recovery speed of the ecosystems involved. It is important to understand the differences between controlled burn for wildfire prevention on one side and the one applied for the purpose described above on the other, which aims to create a favourable habitat for native trees to grow, consequently increasing biodiversity as a main ideal outcome. Additionally these actions enhance lands’ fire resilience and are perfectly in accordance with the general wildfire prevention objectives set by national and European institutions, which benefit from the advices of among the best experts around the globe.