Are Big Fires Inevitable? National Forum presented by the Bushfire CRC

Are Big FiresInevitable?
A national forum presented by the Bushfire CRC

27February 2007, Canberra,Australia

Are Big Fires Inevitable?

A national Forum presented by the Bushfire CRC

27 February 2007, Parliament House, Canberra


Are Big Fires Inevitable?

The frequency and intensity of very large fires in the last ten years begs the question – are ‘megafires’ now inevitable in Australia and internationally. If so, what are the causes? What are the influences of drought and climate change? And what do we do about it? The changing nature of these very large fires requires consideration of new national approaches to prevention and preparedness to help manage the risk to people, property and national assets such as water and forestry. Policies and practices may need to be re-thought and new research required to under-pin new directions. This national forum will bring together experts, practitioners and policy makers from around Australia and internationally, to discuss these emerging issues and their implications for land and natural resource managers and the wider community.

Topics to be covered include

  • ‘Megafires’ – What is the US experience and what kinds of public policy issues are involved?
  • Drought and other climate factors – what is the impact of long running droughts and longer fire seasons, and what is their relationship to climate change?
  • Water – how do bushfires affect the quantity, quality and security of our water supplies?
  • Fire and Land management – how far should we go to actively manage our bushland? What is the right balance between fire suppression and fire preparedness? and
  • Communities – how do we increase self-reliance, where will we find future volunteers, and how do we manage the expanding bush-urban interface?

Speakers and panellists

Speakers, panellists and participants will include practitioners, policy makers and researchers from the fire, environment, water and forestry sectors. Among the expert presenters and panellists will be:

  • Jerry Williams, Former director of Fire and Aviation, US Forest Service, now with the Brookings Institution
  • Phil Cheney, Honorary Research Fellow, CSIRO
  • Professor Peter Kanowski, Head of School, School of Resources, Environment and Society, Australian National University
  • Professor Peter Cullen, Commissioner, National Water Commission
  • Mr Stuart Ellis, Former Chair of the COAG inquiry on Bushfire Mitigation and Management
  • Dr Neville Nicholls, Climate Scientist
  • Dr Neil Burrows, Director of Science, Department of Environment and Conservation, WA
  • Professor Mark Adams, University of NSW and Bushfire CRC
  • Professor John Handmer, RMIT University and Bushfire CRC

Invitation and Registration

Due to limited numbers attendance at this event is by invitation only. Registration is essential – please register by 8 February 2007 to ensure your place at this national forum.

Two ways to register
Tel Bushfire CRC: +61-3-9412-9600

Event details
DATE Tuesday 27 February 2007
LOCATION Parliament House Theatrette,
Parliament House, Canberra
TIME 8.45 am to 5.00 pm (lunch provided)
NOTE There is no registration fee for this event,
For sponsorship inquiries please contact Bushfire CRC.


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