"Australia’s forests now carry far more flammable fuel than before British
invasion, our research shows, revealing the catastrophic risk created by
non-Indigenous bushfire management approaches.
Contemporary approaches to forest management in Australia are based on
suppression – extinguishing bushfires once they’ve started, or seeking to
prevent them through hazard-reduction burning.
This differs from the approach of Indigenous Australians who’ve developed
sophisticated relationships with fire over tens of thousands of years. They
minimise bushfire risk through frequent low-intensity burning – in contrast to
the current scenario of random, high-intensity fires.
Our research, released today, provides what we believe is the first
quantitative evidence that forests and woodlands across southeast Australia
contained fewer shrubs and more grass before colonisation. This suggests
Indigenous fire management holds the key to a safer, more sustainable future on
our flammable continent."
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics