Fire breaks too costly say farmers

Fire breaks too costly say farmers

25 July 2008

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Australia — The South Australian Farmers Federation says widening fire breaks to prevent the spread of bushfire could cost the state up to $120 million.

The recommendation has come from an inquiry into a bushfire on the Eyre Peninsula in 2005, in which nine people died, 93 homes were destroyed and 77,000 hectares of land were burnt.

The Federation’s president, Peter White, says farmers have a lot to lose if the fire breaks become mandatory.

“We are looking at about 120,000 hectares taken out of production,” he says.

“Now even if you value that at a conservative $1000 a hectare for cropping country, we are looking at a $120 million of country taken out of production and that’s every year.

“At the end of the day, what have you got for spending that money and taking that land out of production?”

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