Thursday, 6 December 2018
The state Liberal National Party is calling for a Parliamentary Inquiry following the devastating bushfires across Queensland.
LNP Leader Deb Frecklington said communities rocked by bushfires deserved answers and a Parliamentary Inquiry was the appropriate forum.
“Concerns have been raised about land management practices to manage fuel loads, how our national parks are managed and what landholders also want to do to protect their property and livestock,” Ms Frecklington said.
“These bushfires have been devastating, but we need to learn lessons about how we can prevent it from happening again.
“Climate change can’t be used as an excuse to do nothing. If anything, climate change means we should be adapting our response more.
“The LNP’s position is there needs to be an inquiry on this issue, and we will be moving to establish a Parliamentary Inquiry in the new year. We would welcome the Labor Government’s support.”
LNP Shadow Minister for Fire, Emergency Services and Volunteers Lachlan Millar said the multi-party inquiry would involve public hearings and the opportunity to talk to affected landholders and communities in regional Queensland.
“This is an issue that should be above politics because it’s vitally important we get the policy settings right,” Mr Millar said.
“We know the number of burns by Queensland Fire and Emergency Services has dropped dramatically*.
“Getting bushfire management right can save lives and save communities.
“It will also save native vegetation from being destroyed by bushfires and protect wildlife and livestock.”
What the Inquiry should look at:
- Managing national parks
- Issuing of backburning permits to allow landholders to manage fuel loads
- *QON on fuel load management (https://www.parliament.qld.gov.au/documents/tableOffice/questionsAnswers/2018/1460-2018.pdf)
- Penalties for those deliberately starting fires
- Communication of information to affected communities
- Implementation of Auditor-General’s recommendations (https://www.qao.qld.gov.au/reports-parliament/follow-bushfire-prevention-and-preparedness)