Western Australia

Record $7.3 million to combat the threat of catastrophic bushfires

A record total of $7.3 million in bushfire management funding assistance will be delivered throughout Western Australia under the WA Government.

As part of the funding assistance, 17 regional local governments and agencies will share in $5 million to physically address bushfire threats in their local communities.

$3.3 million will be allocated to regional local governments to carry out more than 410 bushfire mitigation treatments including planned burns, weed control, mechanical clearing, fire breaks and access roads.

Eligible regional local governments will be provided with $500,000 of funding later in the year, and nearly $1.2 million will be made available to other government agencies to treat bushfire risks in areas such as unmanaged Crown reserves.

This $5 million of funding assistance is part of the WA Government’s inaugural $15 million Mitigation Activity Fund, which has already helped 15 local governments treat bushfire risks in their communities earlier in 2018.

Also announced was a further $1.2 million under the WA Department of Fire and Emergency Service’s new Rural Fire Division to treat bushfire risks on unallocated Crown land.

This is the first time that DFES has formally moved into preventative measures and is part of a record $35 million package over four years to treat bushfire risks on unallocated Crown land.

The expenditure will be spread throughout the State, and DFES regional officers will work with partners on a range of activities, including planned burning, weed control, mulching and fire breaks.

The WA Government has also increased the capacity for local governments to identify their bushfire risks.

It has allocated $1.1 million to provide certainty of continuous employment for eight permanent DFES Bushfire Risk Management Planning officers.

These DFES officers will help local governments throughout Western Australia identify their bushfire risks through the development of Bushfire Risk Management Plans.

Once those plans are complete and have been endorsed by the Office of Bushfire Risk Management and approved by local governments, regional local governments may be eligible to apply for funding under the $15 million Mitigation Activity Fund to physically treat those risks.

Source: WA Government