Australia is a land of deserts, droughts, floods, bushfires, flammable forests and fire-prone grasslands – these conditions have developed since the start of the Holocene Warm Era about twelve thousand years ago.
All previous Australian bushies, both black and white, have recognised the key principle of fire management in Australia – you can have many small managed “cool” fires in early spring or a few unplanned disastrous “hot” fires consuming a heavy fuel load in hot dry winds in late spring. (Arsonists have other priorities and light their fires at these most dangerous times.) Continue reading “Green Policies Destroy the Forests”
My great-grandfather’s brother, Nehemiah Bartley born in London in 1830, was a consummate adventurer who arrived in Hobart at age 19. He immediately entered into business arrangements with his Uncle Edwin Tooth the brewer and the dynastic Tasmanian medico and later, Premier of Tasmania, Dr William Lodewyck Crowther. This involved sailing in the Eudora for the frontier gold-rush town of San Francisco to test the market. There the young man helped fight the horrendous San Francisco fire of 1850. Later in life he graphically recorded his adventures in his book “Opals and Agates” (Gordon and Gotch, Brisbane 1872).
Australia has always experienced droughts, floods and bushfires and it is immoral for those with vested interests, political or otherwise, to blame (imaginary) global warming for bushfires that occur in Australia or other parts of the world.
Climate alarmists will point to the need for a tax on carbon dioxide emissions or the closure of coal-mines, the banning of fracking and a shift to unreliable, inefficient alternative energy sources such as solar and wind farms. These measures, they argue, will somehow combat bushfires that have always been part of Australia’s history. There is no evidence to show that reducing carbon dioxide emissions will have any impact on global temperature or bushfire frequency.
California nears the end of another disastrous wildfire season. Governor Newsom and others blame human-caused climate change for California fire destruction. But causes for the destructiveness of these fires appear to be dominated by other factors, not emissions from power plants or sport utility vehicles.
Data from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection shows 2019 to be another year of fire disaster. As of November 3, more than 6,000 California fires burned almost 200,000 acres, destroyed 730 structures and claimed three lives. The Kincade fire in Sonoma County north of San Francisco did the most damage, burning over 77,000 acres to date. As of November 3, this fire was 80 percent contained with the direct cause unknown.
But fire damage in 2019 so far pales in comparison to the 2017 and 2018 seasons. Both years suffered more than 1.5 million acres burned and more than 10,000 structures destroyed. Ninety-three people lost their lives in the 2018 fires.
Bushfires are normal events in this season in tropical and sub-tropical latitudes of the southern hemisphere – in Australia, Africa and South America. Even Captain Cook noted many fires in Eastern Australia in 1770, long before the era of “global warming” hysteria.
What is unusual is the number and ferocity of recent Australian fires.
Destructive bushfires need three things – a big load of dry fuel, hot dry winds and a point of ignition.
A big load of dry fuel, close to towns and buildings, in this season, is a sign of gross mis-management (seen most commonly in public lands). That fuel should have been raked, dozed or burnt in safer weather conditions.
Hot dry winds are not unusual in this season in these latitudes – no use whinging.
But how do 100+ bushfires start suddenly? Machinery occasionally starts fires but not 120 fires in a short time. There have been no lightning storms so who are the arsonists or idiots starting these fires?
Viv Forbes and his wife Judy have spent a lifetime in the bush of Queensland and NT. They were both volunteers in a rural fire brigade for over 25 years. They have fought many bushfires and have seen several fires lit – some deliberately, some naturally, some carelessly. One careless fire burnt out their exploration camp in Arnhem Land, another accidental “fire with nine lives” threatened their grazing property in SE Qld, and a deliberate fire on another property cleared a lot of lantana and leaf litter from their property and also made the adjacent National Park a much safer neighbour.
Below is a true unpublished story about one fire we fought on our grazing property during the Millennium Drought. We hope you find it interesting: “The Fire with Nine Lives”:
Carbon dioxide must be an almighty gas – it gets blamed for almost every human disaster.
Now we have the alarmist Climate Council blaming bushfires on carbon dioxide and global warming. Focussing on the wrong problem is doing more harm than good. It is disappointing to see respected firefighters like Greg Mullins now blaming “climate change” for more and worse bushfires, and now even promoting the misguided Climate Council.
We have heat waves, dry spells and bushfires in Australia every year – bushfires were burning all up the coast when Captain Cook sailed by in 1770. But today we know what causes dangerous fires. It needs deliberate political mismanagement to create disastrous wild-fires which destroy everything – houses, sheds, fences, wildlife and mature trees.
A good wet season can result in nature building up a dangerously large fuel load. In the past this was usually removed safely by many small fires lit by lightning strikes, aboriginals, graziers or foresters. Today massive fuels loads are too often allowed to accumulate for more than one season in forests, reserves, parks and around suburbs. Then one match or spark on a windy day can produce massive fires.
Today’s stupid green policies that discourage and prohibit burning-off, encourage the accumulation of bushfire fuel and exclude grazing animals from large areas of parks and reserves are making uncontrollable wildfires more common. Continue reading “Man-Made Wildfires”
1,000,000 hectares of land was burnt in the Central Queensland bushfires in November and December 2018.
To put that in the Qld Labor Party’s preferred unit of measurement – that’s 2 million Suncorp stadiums.
The majority of the area burnt was national park or in what is classified as “remnant” vegetation. “Remnant” vegetation is basically State-sanctioned national park on privately held land.
105 individual fires burnt from Mackay in the north through to Bundaberg in the south. That’s 600km of bush fires.
One fire burnt so intensely that it destroyed the Eungella National Park – a wet tropical rainforest. Scientists say it will take hundreds of years to regenerate. 1000’s of years of biodiversity – gone in a large, black, hot, plume of smoke.
by Roger Underwood AM, Chairman of the Bushfire Front1
In a recent article in The West Australian newspaper, Murdoch University academic Dr Jatin Kala made the unequivocal statement that: “global warming caused by CO2 will cause extreme … bushfires.” A similar assertion was made by Queensland Premier Palaszczhuk in the wake of recent destructive fires in Queensland.
However, temperature is only one of the factors that influences bushfire behaviour, and its influence is negligible compared to that of wind strength and fuel dryness and quantity.
No firefighter fears a bushfire on a hot day. Even on a day of 40 degrees, a bushfire burning under light winds in light fuels (for example, bushland subject to fuel reduction burning less than 2-3 years ago) is relatively easy to control. On the other hand, even on a day of relatively mild temperature, a bushfire burning in heavy fuels under gale-force winds will be almost impossible to control. Continue reading “Bushfires and Climate Change”