Identifying Environmental Assets for Bushfire Management Area Plans
The Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources (DEWNR) on behalf of the State Bushfire Coordination Committee (SBCC) are looking for your input into the identification of environmental assets most at risk from bushfire so we can plan to protect them. By working together we can make the identification and assessment process as comprehensive as possible.
To nominate environmental assets visit the Atlas of Living Australia BioCollect field data capture tool at https://biocollect.ala.org.au and search for ‘environmental assets’. Create a login, and then submit your environmental assets within South Australia.
Open from 15/1/17 to 16/3/17
What is an Environmental Asset?
An environmental asset is a component of the natural environment that makes up an ecosystem. For example, it could be a plant or animal population, an area of habitat, or a part of that habitat such as a group of very large, old trees. We want to know about environmental assets that you think are a really important part of your local area that may be lost or degraded if there is a bushfire in the area. It could be large or small, degraded or pristine, localised or dispersed, on private or public land or a mix of both.
How can I get involved?
The Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources on behalf of the State Bushfire Coordination Committee (SBCC) would like you to nominate what you think are your most important local environmental assets you believe might be impacted by a bushfire. To nominate assets, visit the Atlas of Living Australia BioCollect field data capture tool at https://biocollect.ala.org.au/ala-cs/project/index/0778f885- 0764-4a3b-8e5e-4c6fd0c6a824 and search ‘environmental assets’. Create a login, and then submit your environmental assets within South Australia. Nominations will be collected from 15/1/17 to 16/3/17.
What will happen with my information?
The nominated environmental assets will be assessed by a panel of experts to determine the risk that bushfire may pose to the asset. Where possible the Bushfire Management Committees, through the regional Bushfire Management Area Plans (BMAP), will identify fire prevention action(s) to protect the environmental asset. A number of factors will be considered when assessing the environmental impact of a bushfire and this will be evaluated on a landscape scale. Data collected by the project will be shared through the Biological Database of South Australia and managed by DEWNR. If you would like to be informed about the outcome of the assessment remember to tick the box when submitting your data, otherwise you will not be contacted.
How else is data being collected?
DEWNR routinely collects plant and animal records but most of these are from National Parks, Reserves and other Public Land and not all environmental assets have been captured. Staff will be reviewing these and pulling together information from a wide range of other sources to ensure that the most comprehensive picture of environmental assets at risk of bushfire is captured.
How will the bushfire risk be reduced to the assets?
If there is an assessed high risk of an environmental asset being lost or severely damaged by bushfire, certain actions can be implemented to reduce this risk. Risk reduction treatments might include reducing bushfire fuels surrounding an environmental asset by prescribed burning, mowing or slashing. Policies or codes of practice may also be used as a treatment to protect environmental assets. DEWNR undertakes a prescribed burn program that is strategic across the landscape, and aimed at creating low fuel areas to reduce the spread, intensity and impacts of uncontrolled bushfires. Where there isn’t an appropriate way to reduce the risk of bushfire to an asset, information on the asset will still be retained to help inform bushfire recovery programs.
For more information about BMAPs visit: http://www.cfs.sa.gov.au/site/fire_safety/bushfire_manage ment_planning/bushfire_management_area_plans.jsp