BUSHFIRE SURVIVORS FOR CLIMATE ACTION (BSCA) has met with Deputy Leader of
the National Party of Australia and Minister for Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management David Littleproud to call for the government to implement all recommendations made in the Bushfire Royal Commission’s final report.
Jo Dodds, BSCA President, said the meeting was a positive step towards bridging
political divides, and that bushfire survivors want to see immediate action from the Federal Government on both the Bushfire Royal Commission’s recommendations and climate change.
“Broadly, our values and goals were well-aligned. We are both concerned that regional
communities are bearing the brunt of climate change events, such as bushfires, and are paying a very high price for it,” said Ms Dodds. “Minister Littleproud and I agreed that it will be critical for all levels of government and community to work together towards the goal of reducing bushfire risks.”
BSCA wants to see all 80 recommendations made by the Bushfire Royal Commission
implemented, in particular recommendation 3.5 that calls for establishment of an entity focused on long-term disaster risk reduction to enhance Australia’s natural disaster resilience and recovery.
Ms Dodds said it was heartening that Minister Littleproud is engaging with BSCA and its
members, is keen to see action taken on all recommendations, and that 3.5 should be
implemented by July 2021.
“We both agree that action on all recommendations is critical, and that the process should be non-partisan and fairly handled,” Ms Dodds said. “We will continue to watch and monitor the government to make sure it delivers on its promises in the coming months.”
BSCA Member Jack Egan, who lost his North Rosedale on New Years Eve, also attended the meeting and spoke about recovery resources needing to be distributed according to need, not just the squeakiest wheels.
“The Royal Commission’s findings clearly state that Australia’s prosperity and security depends on our ability to anticipate, manage and prevent the economic, social and environmental impacts of climate change,” Ms Dodds said. “Reaching net-zero emissions as soon as possible is in the interests of both our rural and urban communities.”
About Bushfire Survivors for Climate Action:
BSCA was founded shortly after the Tathra and District fire in March 2018 to raise the voices of people impacted by bushfires. Our members are people who lost their homes, communities, loved ones and peace of mind in bushfires; people who’ve fought fires as RFS or other volunteers, community leaders concerned about the impact and growing risks of bushfires and primary producers who’ve watched stock and wildlife impacted by bushfires and their after-effects. We are old, young, teachers, community workers, artists, councillors, writers, parents and children.