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Federal Government is rejecting the concept of a "sovereign aerial firefighting capability"

The Beagle Editor, Federal Government's rejection of the Royal Commission recommendation on aerial firefighting

The first responsibility of any government is to keep the people safe. Despite its promise to respond positively to the 2020 Black Summer bushfire tragedy, the Federal Government has rejected a key Bushfire Royal Commission recommendation to establish a national aerial firefighting fleet "to be tasked according to greatest national need". By declining to implement this key recommendation the Federal Government is rejecting the concept of a "sovereign aerial firefighting capability" to share resources across the states and territories. All expert opinion confirms the crucial role such a fleet should have in quickly responding to fires e.g. many claim that the November 26th lightning strike on Mt Currowan would have been extinguished within a week if tankers had been used. Instead, the fire raged on for weeks, killing four people, destroying 500 homes in the Eurobodalla Shire and affecting thousands of lives. The threat of natural disasters (such as the fires of the Black Summer) must be given as much importance as any other National Security challenge. The expenditure of the billions of dollars on national defence is useless if all we are defending is a burnt out continent. Kate Nockels

Photo: Ocean View Photography Maree Jackson

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