Joel Bolzenius, Maddie George and Dr Di Virkki took to the stage at the recent National Landcare Conference to showcase taking a cultural approach to whole of Country strategic fire planning. The talk looked into recognising and empowering First Nations leadership in fire management.
The talk: Taking a cultural approach to whole of Country strategic fire planning
For many millennia, First Nations have continuously cared for lands and seas. Colonisation and the associated exclusion of First Nations management in the landscape drastically changed vegetation structures significantly contributing to devastating fire events.
On Minjerribah and Mulgumpin, the Quandamooka people are restoring cultural fire practices and integrating their knowledge into land management to reduce the occurrence of large wildfires.
How fire management strategies coordinated by the Quandamooka First Nation are protecting urban areas, culture, infrastructure, and natural assets across Country. Central to these strategies is the focus on empowering First Nations led fire management that utilises a range of culturally integrated practices to maintain cultural landscapes and ecosystem structure while protecting life and property.
This work has been recognised as a leading example of effective fire management by the Queensland Inspector General of Emergency Management as part of the Queensland Bushfires Review and implements many of the actions identified through the Royal Commission into National Natural Disaster Arrangements.
In addition, this work was credited with stopping a fire from reaching townships on Minjerribah in the 2019/20 Summer bushfire season.