Forestry industry, the CFMEU, and the Nationals united on reducing fuel loads in NSW

Forestry industry, the CFMEU, and the Nationals united on reducing fuel loads in NSW, by Ben Packham.

The forest industry and the powerful CFMEU have called for fuel loads in national parks to be aggressively managed through hazard reduction burning and selectiv­e logging, to avoid a repeat of the bushfire crisis sweeping the nation.

The Australian can also reveal the NSW government will consider stripping land management and hazard reduction responsib­ilities from “conservationist” environmen­tal agencies.

Instead it would create a standalone hazard reduction body that would be solely devoted to reducing fuel loads and clearing more land to mitigate fire risks.

The proposal is one of two options­ being pushed strongly by Nationals MPs ahead of an inquiry into bushfire management led by the NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment. …

A second, “softer” option to overhaul land management, likely to be viewed more favourably by cabinet, involves significantly increasing the Rural Fire Service’s powers over its allied agencies.

Under this plan, the NSW RFS would be made the lead decision-making body on forest clearing and hazard reductions. Its priority would be to significantly reduce fuel loads and clear land on both public and private property.

Hooray!

It’s all happened before, and been forgotten again. This 1939 report concluded the fires were man made and burn offs in recent years had been “ridiculously inadequate”.

Are those calling for another Royal Commission aware of such findings from past Royal Commissions and major studies, and the wealth of studies pointing to the way the aborigines did things?