Call for ‘urgent overhaul’ of bushfire management

Professor Allan Curtis

Professor Allan Curtis

With the immediate threat of the recent NSW bushfires abated, ILWS social scientist, Professor Allan Curtis, shares his views about how those living in South East Australia could better prepare for the increased risks to life and property from bushfires.

Professor Curtis is engaged in international research examining community responses to wildfires in the USA, Canada and Australia. He also draws on his own experience as owner of a rural property at the farm/forest interface which was burnt in the 2009 fires.

Despite the loss of lives and property in recent years, the devastation of the Black Saturday fires in Victoria in 2009 and the Canberra bushfires in 2003 suggests that we have been relatively unscathed.

For me, the possibilities of major losses of life, property, animals and plants in major fires over the next 20 years are really frightening.

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