Fire management, drier conditions and the summer ahead for Central Australia.

Fire at Tennant Creek NT. NT Health Facebook

The rise of bushfires in the Northern Territory and across other states has been linked to worldwide temperature rising, according to climate scientists’ reports. Local bushfires in the Barkly Region of Central Australia are a sign of what is ahead for summer with introduced grass species fuelling fires after a wet winter. 

Dr Andrew Edwards Senior Research Fellow – Darwin Centre for Bushfire Research at Charles Darwin University – reports that the window of time for prescribed burning will be shorter because of much drier weather due to extreme weather conditions, such as the El Nino we’re now experiencing, caused by climate change.

Speaking with Kirstyn Lindsay, Andrew Edwards said the impact of fires that occurred in the Summer of 2019 have changed the way Country will be managed in the future. Indigenous Ranger groups from Northern Australia have been working on improving fire management, their experience has been shared with other groups across Australia.

Andrew’s research highlights that fire management must be a community effort, based on Indigenous fire knowledge to create a fire-resilient country. Communities can reduce the fuel load, restore habitat and prepare their homes and towns by removing or at least reducing introduced grassy weeds. 



Dr Andrew Edwards-Darwin Centre for Bushfire Reaearch.