A new report has been published by Natural Hazards Research Australia (the Centre) that summarises the key research findings from the wide-ranging Black Summer research program, undertaken by the Centre and the Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC in the years since the 2019-20 fire season. This multi-discipline program will improve the capabilities of communities to prepare for, respond to and recover from future natural hazard emergencies.
The report – Understanding the Black Summer bushfires through research: a summary of key findings from the Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC – presents findings from 23 projects within four research themes, covering different issues and knowledge gaps that arose from Black Summer:
- fire predictive services
- cultural land management
- community-centred disaster risk reduction
- bushfire data and reconstruction.
The report presents an integrated view of the way forward from the fires, including what new capabilities can be implemented and how Australia can best learn from its worst fire season on record. The findings summarised in the report and in final project outputs can now be used by governments, emergency management agencies, industry and other partners to influence decisions and create safer communities and landscapes in the face of future bushfires.
Black Summer Hazard Note
Hazard Notes are research briefing papers that summarise key research from Natural Hazards Research Australia. Download the Hazard Note 1: Understanding Black Summer bushfires through research for a short overview of the Understanding the Black Summer bushfires through research report above.
Black Summer research program
Building on existing knowledge and expertise, the Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC developed the Black Summer research program – a suite of research projects to gather insight, data, knowledge and a basis for further study into what happened that season and how that information could be used to reduce future disaster risk.
Each project in the Black Summer research program has delivered crucial research insights that address the national priorities on disaster risk reduction, and show how collaboration between researchers, governments and the emergency management sector supports the needs of communities across Australia. The findings of the research were used to inform the national Research Priorities, published by the Centre to guide nation-wide research into disaster risk reduction and natural hazard resilience.
Several of these projects and outcomes have since been expanded by the Centre.
Black Summer research projects - all final reports
The findings summarised in Understanding the Black Summer bushfires through research and detailed in the final project reports can be used as a scientific basis by governments, fire and emergency management agencies, industry and community organisations to influence decisions and create safer communities and landscapes in the face of future bushfires.
Natural Hazards Research Australia hosted two webinars on 7 March and 9 March to share the key Black Summer findings from Understanding the Black Summer bushfires through research and final project reports.
These webinars gave partners, government representatives, emergency management personnel, industry and community members the chance to hear from lead researchers about selected projects.