Firefighters battle bushfires in Angourie, northern New South Wales, Tuesday, September 10, 2019. (AAP Image/Jason O'Brien)
Firefighters battle bushfires in Angourie, northern New South Wales, Tuesday, September 10, 2019. (AAP Image/Jason O'Brien)

Burn to go ahead against backdrop of looming fire season

WITH one eye on the looming summer fire season, work is ramping up on hazard reduction burns in State Forests.

Forestry Corporation issued a warning there will be a prescribed burn for the next three days in the area of Wild Cattle Creek and surrounding residents should take steps to limit their exposure to smoke.

The burn will take place in the Battery Trail area, around 30 kilometres from Coffs

Harbour and Bellingen, primarily to reduce fine fuel and minimise the impacts of future

wildfires.

Forestry Corporation protection supervisor Tom Newby said in addition to those living in the area, forest users also need to stay away from the area while the burn was taking place.

The hazard reduction is the third in the last month and follows FCs operation in Orara West State Forest and National Parks and Wildlife Service's burn in Jagun Nature reserve at the beginning of July.

Firefighting authorities will be hoping to avoid a repeat of the devastating bushfires which tore through the parts of the Mid North Coast and North Coast last summer.

READ MORE: More than 100 homes razed by bushfires around the region

Hundreds of homes and outbuildings were destroyed across the region, leading a number of landowners to voice concerns about contributing factors such as climate change and a perceived lack of hazard reduction burning.

It also prompted a coalition of former fire chiefs, including the NSW Fire and Rescue Commissioner, Greg Mullins, to call on all levels of government to listen to the advice of scientists and ensure tackling climate change was front and centre of the bushfire conversation.

READ MORE: 'Hopefully they'll wake up in Canberra': Ex-fire chief

The Emergency Leaders for Climate Action recently held a national bushfire and climate change summit which brought together hundreds of people across Australia and the world and made a series of recommendations to address the worsening bushfire risk.

Their Australian Bushfire and Climate Plan features 165 recommendations for governments, fire and land management agencies and communities to mitigate and adapt to worsening fire conditions.

The first of 25 priority recommendations was for the Federal Government to address the "root cause" of climate crisis and worsening bushfires through committing to net zero carbon emissions and the gradual phase-out of fossil fuels.

Read the full report at emergencyleadersforclimateaction.org.au.



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