Articles on Land management

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Waters from the Herbert River, which runs toward one of northern Australia’s richest agricultural districts, could be redirected under a Bradfield scheme. Patrick White

‘New Bradfield’: rerouting rivers to recapture a pioneering spirit

The ‘New Bradfield’ scheme seeks to revive a nation-building ethos supposedly stifled by bureaucratic inertia. But there are good reasons the scheme never became a reality.
Aja Conrad, the Karuk Tribe’s workforce and internships coordinator, lights a prescribed fire in Orleans, California. Jenny Staats

What western states can learn from Native American wildfire management strategies

Instead of suppressing wildfire, the Karuk Tribe in the Pacific Northwest is using it as an integral part of its climate change management plan. Federal, state and local agencies are taking note.
Aborigines Using Fire to Hunt Kangaroos, by Joseph Lycett. New research suggests the assumption Aboriginal people lived in open vegetation sustained by fire is misplaced. National Library of Australia

New research turns Tasmanian Aboriginal history on its head. The results will help care for the land

History has told us Aboriginal people in Tasmania almost exclusively occupied open plains. Revelations to the contrary could transform modern conservation.
No-till farming conserves soil by greatly reducing erosion. USDA NRCS South Dakota/Eric Barsness

Restoring soil can help address climate change

More than one-fifth of global warming emissions come from land use. Sustainable farming can make soil healthier and better able to soak up carbon, while saving energy and boosting food production.
Many farmers are now facing a future in which it is much harder to make a living off the land. AAP Image/Dan Peled

Farmers’ climate denial begins to wane as reality bites

A decade ago, only a third of farmers accepted the science of climate change. But surveys show attitudes have shifted in recent years as the farming community begins to confront what the future holds.
Maasai women on a conservation project in Kenya. Joan de la Malla

Indigenous peoples are crucial for conservation – a quarter of all land is in their hands

A new map shows that more than 25% of all land outside Antarctica is held and managed by Indigenous peoples. This makes these communities vital allies in the global conservation effort.
A ‘thinned’ landscape, which provides far from ideal habitat for many species.

Land clearing on the rise as legal ‘thinning’ proves far from clear-cut

Legal vegetation 'thinning' is contributing to high rates of land clearing, potentially causing problems for threatened species and ecosystems.
The sun rises above Uluru in outback Australia. David Gray/Reuters

We need our country; our country needs us

'Australian values' have been mangled into meaninglessness by countless politicians. But there is an national character, shaped by the Australian land. New research investigates Outback values.
Tony Abbott launched the Green Army program, and remains a big fan. AAP Image/Britta Campion

Why give the Green Army its marching orders?

The possible axing of the Green Army, which aimed to put thousands to work tending conservation projects, leaves many questions unanswered - the biggest being the reason for the sudden retreat.
The urban landscape is complex and ever-changing in cities such as Perth, but digital aerial photography can now monitor even the smallest changes. Wikimedia Commons

The planner’s new best friend: we can now track land-use changes on a scale of centimetres

Constant, complex changes in cities and mine sites are hard to monitor. Drawing on digital aerial photography, it's now possible to track land-use and vegetation changes in areas as small as 10-20cm.
Indigenous rangers like Yugul Mangi senior women (from left to right) Edna Nelson, Cherry Daniels and Julie Roy, are crucial guardians of the outback environment. Emilie Ens

Remote Indigenous communities are vital for our fragile ecosystems

Remote Indigenous communities aren't just places to live - they are also crucial for supporting ranger programs and other projects that protect the environment in areas that might otherwise go untended.
A property in South Australia’s Clare Valley, where the farmer has planted hundreds of gum trees. David Clarke/Flickr

Carbon farming initiative will fail farmers and rural communities

Australian farmers and rural land owners are being told that they will be given powerful and direct incentives to store carbon in the land under the federal government’s new climate policy. But is that…
Even if the farmhouse stays dry, the crops are underwater. Steve Parsons/PA

Farmers, small businesses and the full cost of the wettest winter

With towns in the south and southwest flooded out, the government has offered £5,000 payments to help homeowners add flood protection to their homes, while small firms will enjoy a cut of a £10m fund to…
What lies beneath this watery landscape? Steve Parsons/PA

Floods leave farms underwater, and farmers under pressure

I’ve been talking to farmers all this week, many of whom have had their fields underwater for a month or more. It is quite soul destroying to see the natural assets of your business, on which you depend…

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