BUSHFIRE RISK: Emu Park resident Graham Miller explains his concerns to Crs Adam Belot and Andrea Friend.
BUSHFIRE RISK: Emu Park resident Graham Miller explains his concerns to Crs Adam Belot and Andrea Friend.

Livingstone’s bushfire’s mitigation key to plan

BUSHFIRE mitigation is one of the biggest issues facing Livingstone Shire and two councillors were not prepared to see the organisation’s blueprint for the future rubber-stamped without a strong emphasis on that.

Recently Livingstone ­adopted a new corporate plan which details the council’s strategic direction for the next decade.

But the green light did not come before Crs Andrea Friend and Adam Belot insisted on some wording changes around the issue of fire mitigation.

They got their way.

Cr Friend explained that she and Cr Belot wanted to see what was effectively a more in-depth vision for action on fire mitigation in the shire.

And the head of Livingstone’s newly created Water, Waste Management and Environment portfolio did not hide her passion when speaking to the proposed amendments.

“I’m very, very passionate about the environment,” Cr Friend said.

“I love the environment.

“If we don’t reduce the fuel around our shire then what’s going to happen is that any bushfires that come through, they’re going to destroy natural flora and fauna.

“But by managing the threat, we can actually protect the environment to a greater sense than allowing a natural bushfire to take hold.”

The wording change that Crs Friend and Belot wanted, and got, was: “Manage threats by collaborating with traditional owners, agencies, community groups and private landholders about land management; protection methods including hazard reduction strategies; and conservation policy; to ensure the protection of people, property, and the environment.”

Cr Friend added: “This particular wording was very important to both Cr Belot and myself.”

Earlier this month Livingstone revealed how it was working in close partnership with lead agency Queensland Fire and ­Emergency Services through the Local Disaster Management Group and Fire Management Group, to develop a bushfire risk management plan.

That came on the back of the fire mitigation issue rearing its head again when long-time Emu Park resident Graham Miller said he was worried that authorities had not learned lessons from the Cobraball bushfire disaster.

Mr Miller has lived at Henry St for more than 20 years and he said in that time, he had never seen fire mitigation conducted on ­Livingstone Shire Council owned-land adjacent to his property.

He is not the first resident to raise these types of concerns.