Wildfires are the inevitable consequence of three factors coming together at the same time: an ignition, the weather and fuel.
Brenton Geach/Gallo Images via Getty Images
The fynbos vegetation that historically clothed the slopes of Table Mountain is highly inflammable. This has been worsened by the spread of alien trees that burn more intensely than the fynbos.
Rangers from Kanyirninpa Jukurrpa, conducting cool season burning on Martu Country.
Tony Jupp,The Nature Conservancy
The bushfire royal commission will look at incorporating Aboriginal knowledge into mainstream fire management. But in practice, what does that mean?
We know what has to be done. Now it’s time to implement previous recommendations.
CPL TRISTAN KENNEDY/FIRST JOINT PUBLIC AFFAIRS UNIT HANDOUT/EPA
Many of the recommendations of previous inquiries and reviews have yet to be implemented. What we need is a better fire and land management strategy – not another royal commission.
An estimated 85% of bushfires are lit by humans.
Australia devotes countless resources to fighting bushfires, but precious little to examining the main cause - humans.
In many countries including America, computer models are being used to predict how a fire will burn.
The convergence of technologies such as 5G, artificial intelligence and virtual reality may offer hope for the way we manage future bushfire disasters.
Part of Mandy Martin’s painting Cool Burn (2016): in her painting workshops at Djinkarr, Indigenous rangers brought the threats to their land to life on canvas.
Feral cats and pigs, mission grass and climate change - in western Arnhem Land, Indigenous rangers are battling many environmental threats. Through painting and performance, they are also telling 'healthy country' stories.
Fire rages through the forest in a typical Australian bushfire.
We can manage the risks from bushfires far more effectively if we look at the ways different plant species control the the way the fires burn.
Ranger Ray Nadjamerrek demonstrates early dry season burning techniques in West Arnhem Land, Australia.
Warddeken Land Management.
Wildfire makes up about 4% of the greenhouse gases added to the atmosphere each year.
Throw another one on. Researchers tested plant flammability using a blow torch and barbecue.
You might think having trees around your home is the worst idea during a bushfire, but some plants can actually help repel fire.