Articles on NSW bushfires 2013

Displaying 1 - 20 of 21 articles

Starting earlier, lasting longer: the challenge of managing the New South Wales bushfire season is getting harder. AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts

Bushfire season in New South Wales grows longer and stronger

In New South Wales in 2013, bushfires in January and October collectively burned 768,000 hectares of bushland and destroyed 279 homes. Tragically, two people lost their lives and the damage was estimated…
Firefighters battle a bushfire close to homes in the Blue Mountains, west of Sydney, in October this year. AAP/Dan Himbrechts

Climate Council’s Code Red bushfire warning

Australians have always had to live with bushfires - but climate change is driving that fire danger even higher. And we’re not talking about a distant threat to future generations. According to real observations…
We should worry less about emissions and more about getting people out of harm’s way. AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts

Climate change and bushfires - you’re missing the point!

Climate change has yet again been blamed for another natural disaster, this time the recent bushfires in NSW. But much more important is the role of poor land-use planning decisions that are increasing…
How are we going to adapt to more frequent extremes? AAP Image/High Alpha

Now is the right time to talk about climate change adaptation

When tragedies such as the NSW bushfires strike it might feel thoughtless and insensitive to talk about climate change. But history proves there are three reasons that disasters are precisely the time…
Google’s mapping of crises can take pressure off emergency services, letting them spend money where it’s needed. AAP/Dean Lewins

Google’s Crisis Map: can technology save us from nature?

Bushfire management is one of Australia’s most prominent and important environmental challenges, affecting the lives of hundreds of thousands of people. Just this week, Google launched a Google Crisis…
We should be talking about future bushfires. AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts

Fire and climate change: fire risk needs to be managed

Recent fires in New South Wales highlight our current vulnerability, remind us about potential future risks and prompt us to think more strategically about risk management. Some key questions have come…
The Prime Minister knows a lot about fires, but does he understand their connection with climate change? AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts

Are the NSW bushfires linked to climate change?

The New South Wales fires have sparked a hot debate on the question whether these fires are linked to climate change. Prime Minister Tony Abbott joined in too stating, “These fires are certainly not a…
Research is hard, but it’s worth doing properly. ulisse albiati

On the Hunt for credible information [citation needed]

A valid argument about a scientific issue requires support using robust, objective, peer-reviewed scientific evidence. This notion is drilled into university students from the beginning of their tertiary…
Transplanting the suburban house to a bush setting needs a rethink. AAP Image/Lukas Coch

How can we build houses that better withstand bushfires?

As we are currently witnessing, transferring the suburban house into a setting susceptible to bushfires causes a lot of problems. Put simply: if you are going to live in a bushfire area you should expect…
Official advice is important, but if it doesn’t match up with local knowledge it’s often ignored. AAP Image/Damian Shaw

Why don’t they do as they’re told? Taking fire risks on the fringe

It’s alarmingly familiar. Scenes of bushland burning on the fringes of an Australian city. The roofs of threatened homes just visible through the forest canopy and the smoke. Fire-fighters beyond exhaustion…
Firefighters have plenty of ideas about disaster management - so why don’t we listen? AAP/Dan Himbrechts

What firefighters say about climate change

You do not find many climate change sceptics on the end of [fire] hoses anymore… They are dealing with increasing numbers of fires, increasing rainfall events, increasing storm events. – A senior Victorian…
Fighting fire with fire: how can we best target hazard reduction burns? Flickr/Anthony Clark

Bushfire hazard reduction: the sword or the shield?

The Greater Sydney region contains the largest urban centre in Australia, and is also, thanks to its landscape and forests, prone to intense bushfires. Tens of thousands of properties and businesses are…
Twitter/@ljayes

The political anatomy of a fire

In 2009, just after Black Saturday, when some of Canada’s most experienced firefighters were out in Australia to fight bushfires, they were amazed. They told journalists that while the spruce and fir forests…
In a democracy, there is no ‘wrong time’ to talk about an issue. spunkinator/Flickr

There’s no place for politeness when you’re fighting a fire

Peter Phelps is no friend of mine. He’s Government Whip in the NSW Legislative Council, and he’s previously had some interesting things to say about science. He’s also a fun and feisty Twitter user, who’s…
It really is time to talk about whether climate change is responsible for bushfires. AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts

Fire and climate change: don’t expect a smooth ride

With fires still burning across New South Wales, it’s time to have a look at the role climate change might have played. Are the conditions we’re seeing natural variation, or part of a long term trend…
Planning law could do much more to prevent us living in bushfire-prone areas. Brian Yap

Living with fire: deciding where to build

With an early, devastating start to the bushfire season in New South Wales and Queensland, recent disasters in Victoria and Tasmania, and projections that current trends will continue under climate change…
Smoke from bushfires fill the sky over Sydney, Thursday, October 17, 2013, potentially affecting millions of people. AAP/JAMES MORGAN

What you can do about the health impact of bushfire smoke

In recent days, we’ve seen dramatic pictures of thick smoke from bushfires hanging over Sydney. Our first thoughts are with people living in the immediate vicinity of the fires, and the threat to their…
Screen Shot at PM.

Is the Abbott government fiddling while NSW burns?

For the Abbott government, it has emerged that talking about climate change during a “natural” disaster is taboo. Of course, how “natural” the NSW fires actually are is the issue here, as we witness over…
Sydney’s environment evolved with fire. AAP Image/Dean Lewins

Sydney fires caused by people and nature

Even without the official tally it looks like the fires that started yesterday in Blue Mountains will be the most costly in terms of property since 1968. But how have they come about? Why is the area vulnerable…

Top contributors

More