The drought in eastern Australia was a significant driver of this season’s unprecedented bushfires. But it also caused another, less well known environmental calamity this summer: entire hillsides of trees turned from green to brown.
As bushfires in New South Wales are finally contained, attention is turning to nature’s recovery. Green shoots are sprouting and animals are returning. But we must accept that in some cases, the bush may never return to its former state.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander readers are advised this article contains images and names of deceased people.
Australia’s bushfire crisis has been unprecedented, so it demands an unprecedented national response. Never before has such a large area been burnt by multiple fires in a single fire season, including bushland in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia and Tasmania.
How do you support people forever attached to a landscape after an inferno tears through their homelands: decimating native food sources, burning through ancient scarred trees and destroying ancestral and totemic plants and animals?
Images of desperate, singed koalas in blackened landscapes have come to symbolise the damage to nature this bushfire season. Such imagery has catalysed global concern, but the toll on biodiversity is much more pervasive.
Learn how the Bushfire Hub is delivering world-leading, cost-effective research that will drive positive transformation in how bushfire is managed in Australia.