bushfires leave country sized scars

Australia:  Record fire damage area totals 3 million hectares

14 February 2002

Source and Copyright:  ABC News

Bushfires this season have burnt a record 3 million hectares of land in Australia.

The National Association of Forest Industries says the amount of land burnt is more than double the previous record of 1.5 million hectares in 1939.

The majority of the destruction has occurred in New South Wales, the ACT and Victoria where much of the Kosciuszko and Namadgi National Parks have been burnt out as well as the Alpine National Parks.

The association’s executive director, Kate Carnell, says early intervention is essential to prevent such widespread destruction happening again.

“What we want to see is a national inquiry into the management of national parks,” she said.

“We want to see significantly better and more active management of the parks with hazard reduction, keeping fire trails open, making sure there are adequate staff and adequate machinery in place to put fires out early.”


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