Grampians Bushfire Management Strategy 2020 - Fuel management Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas - Safer ...

Grampians Bushfire Management Strategy 2020 - Fuel management Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas - Safer ...
Bushfire Management
        Strategy 2020
                          Fuel management
           Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas
Grampians Bushfire Management Strategy 2020 - Fuel management Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas - Safer ...
    We acknowledge and respect Victoria’s
    Traditional Owners as the original custodians of
    the state’s land and waters, their unique ability to
    care for Country and deep spiritual connection to it.
    We honour Elders past and present, whose
    knowledge and wisdom has ensured the continuation
    of culture and traditional practices.
    We are committed to genuinely partner and meaningfully
    engage with Victoria’s Traditional Owners and Aboriginal
    communities to support the protection of Country, the
    maintenance of spiritual and cultural practices and their
    broader aspirations in the 21st century and beyond.
    We would like to acknowledge the numerous people within
    DELWP, Parks Victoria, the CFA and local governments who
    contributed to the discussions and decision-making processes
    that resulted in this strategy. We would also like to acknowledge
    stakeholder groups and community members for their interest and
    input into this planning process.

   Aboriginal people should be aware that this publication may contain images or names of
   deceased persons in photographs or printed material.

Photo credit
Glenn Rudolph, DELWP
© The State of Victoria Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning 2020

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International licence. You are free to re-use the
work under that licence, on the condition that you credit the State of Victoria as author. The licence does not apply
to any images, photographs or branding, including the Victorian Coat of Arms, the Victorian Government logo and
the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) logo. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://

Printed by
ISBN 978-1-76105-006-0 (Print)
ISBN 978-1-76105-007-7 (pdf/online/MS word)

This publication may be of assistance to you but the State of Victoria and its employees do not guarantee that the
publication is without flaw of any kind or is wholly appropriate for your particular purposes and therefore disclaims all
liability for any error, loss or other consequence which may arise from you relying on any information in this publication.

If you would like to receive this publication in an alternative format, please
telephone the DELWP Customer Service Centre on 136186, email customer.service@ or via the National Relay Service on 133 677 or at www.relayservice. This document is also available on the internet at
Grampians Bushfire Management Strategy 2020 - Fuel management Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas - Safer ...
Abbreviations and Definitions                                2
Introduction                                                 4
  Our shared responsibility to mitigate bushfire risk        5
    Recognising the role of Victoria’s Traditional Owners    6
  Bushfire management planning                               7
    Strategic planning                                       8
    Operational and tactical planning                        9
    Other bushfire management actions                        9
  About this bushfire management strategy                    11
    Method overview                                          12
    Identifying and assessing risk to values and assets      12

Our landscape context                                       14
  Bushfire history and patterns                             18
  Values and assets                                         20
    Human landscape                                         20
    Aboriginal cultural heritage                            22
    Natural landscape                                       24

Our objectives                                              28
Our risk management approach                                30
  Risk in Grampians region                                  30
    Higher risk areas in Grampians region                   30
    Lower risk areas in Grampians region                    31
  Why model house loss?                                     34
  How do we model house loss?                               34

Our fuel management strategy                                36
    Fire Management Zones                                   36
    Ecosystem resilience                                    41
    About our fuel management strategy                      41
    Victoria’s residual risk                                48

Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas                              52
Implementation                                              56
Monitoring, evaluation and reporting                        58
Appendix 1: Program logic                                   60
References                                                  66
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2   Bushfire Management Strategy

    Abbreviations and Definitions
     Abbreviation        Term

     APZ                 Asset Protection Zone
                            an area around properties and infrastructure where we intensively manage fuel to
                            provide localised protection to reduce radiant heat and ember attack on life and
                            property in the event of a bushfire

     BMZ                 Bushfire Moderation Zone
                            an area around properties and infrastructure where we manage fuel to reduce the
                            speed and intensity of bushfires and to protect nearby assets, particularly from
                            ember attack in the event of a bushfire

     BREA                Bushfire Risk Engagement Area
                            parts of the landscape where managing bushfire fuels is most effective in reducing

     CAR                 Comprehensive, Adequate and Representative reserve system

     CBBM                Community Based Bushfire Management

     CFA                 Country Fire Authority

     DELWP               Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning

     EMV                 Emergency Management Victoria

     FFMVic              Forest Fire Management Victoria
                            comprised of staff from DELWP, PV, Melbourne Water and VicForests when working
                            in bushfire management on public land

     FMZ                 Fire Management Zone
                            for fuel management purposes, public land in Victoria is classified into four fire
                            management zones: asset protection zone, bushfire moderation zone, landscape
                            management zone, and planned burning exclusion zone

     GMA                 Geometric Mean Abundance
                            an index of the relative abundance of species within a community. As the relative
                            abundance of species changes, so too does the GMA, and this can be used as a
                            measure of resilience

     Ha                  Hectares

     JFMP                Joint Fuel Management Program

     LDNP                Little Desert National Park
Grampians Bushfire Management Strategy 2020 - Fuel management Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas - Safer ...
Grampians   3

Abbreviation    Term

LMZ             Landscape Management Zone
                   an area where we manage fuel to minimise the impact of major bushfires, to
                   improve ecosystem resilience and for other purposes (such as to regenerate
                   forests and protect water catchments)

MER             Monitoring, Evaluation and Reporting

MISS            Minimum Impact Suppression Strategy

NCR             Nature Conservation Reserve

PBEZ            Planned Burning Exclusion Zone
                   an area where we try to avoid planned burning, mainly because ecological assets
                   in this zone are primarily intolerant to fire

PV              Parks Victoria

RAP             Registered Aboriginal Party

Residual risk      the amount of risk that remains after bushfires and fuel management activities
                   reduce fuel. Residual risk is used by DELWP as a performance measure

RSFMPC          Regional Strategic Fire Management Planning Committee

SDM             Structured Decision Making

TFI             Tolerable Fire Interval
                   a term which expresses the minimum or maximum recommended time intervals
                   between successive fire disturbance events at a site or defined area for a
                   particular vegetation community. The time interval is derived from the vital
                   attributes of plant species that occupy the vegetation community. The TFIs guide
                   how frequent fires should be in the future to allow the persistence of all species at
                   the site or defined area

VFRR-B          Victorian Fire Risk Register – Bushfire

WCAP            Wimmera Conservation Action Plan
Grampians Bushfire Management Strategy 2020 - Fuel management Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas - Safer ...
4   Bushfire Management Strategy

    Victoria is one of the most bushfire-prone areas in the world. Victorians are accustomed
    to living with bushfire risk, which is the likelihood and consequence of bushfires. It
    includes the likelihood of a fire starting and spreading across the landscape, and the
    consequences of it impacting the things we value: people, communities, houses and
    farms, infrastructure, our economy and the natural environment.

    Bushfires are driven by three key factors – fuel,         Bushfire risk is influenced not only by how a bushfire
    weather and topography – which together make              behaves, but also by how fire impacts the different
    up the ‘fire behaviour triangle’. These three factors     things that we value. For example, population
    combine to affect how a bushfire behaves: how             growth in and near forested areas increases the
    fast it travels, where it spreads, and how intensely it   bushfire risk, as more people enter areas where
    burns. Fuel management is important, because it is        major bushfires are more likely to impact. The
    the only element of the fire behaviour triangle that      Victorian community is changing in other ways, with
    we can influence.                                         an aging population and decreases in volunteering
                                                              in some areas, leading to an increase in vulnerability
    Bushfire fuels are the leaves, bark, twigs and shrubs     to bushfire. For plants and animals, drought,
    that are burnt by fire. The fuel type, dryness, size,     invasive species incursion, as well as habitat loss
    moisture content and arrangement can all affect           and fragmentation increase the susceptibility to
    the speed, size and intensity of a bushfire. Fuel         negative bushfire impacts.
    management includes planned burning — lighting
    and managing planned fires in the landscape —             Our changing climate – bringing rising average
    and mechanical treatment — mowing, slashing,              temperatures, more hot days and less rainfall –
    mulching and using herbicides. Fuel management            means bushfire risk is constantly increasing as
    activities reduce the amount of fuel across our           fuels dry out and extreme fire weather events
    landscape, decreasing the fire behaviour of               increase. Bushfires with the worst consequences
    bushfires, helping limit their spread and intensity       typically occur during extreme weather conditions
    when they occur, and making it easier for our             (such as during very hot, dry and windy periods).
    firefighters to control them and lessen their impacts.    The disastrous 2019–20 bushfire season, followed
                                                              periods where parts of Eastern Australia –
                                                              extending from Tasmania through Victoria,
                                                              New South Wales and into Queensland – had
                                                              experienced their driest conditions on record. Over
                                                              1.5 million hectares (ha) in Victoria were burnt and
                                                              large areas of eastern Australia impacted.
Grampians Bushfire Management Strategy 2020 - Fuel management Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas - Safer ...
Grampians       5

                                                                                        Photo credit: Josh Bushell

In Victoria, climate change is forecast to:
                                                      Our shared responsibility to
• extend the bushfire season
• make bushfires larger, more severe, and more        mitigate bushfire risk
                                                      While bushfires will always be a threat, Victorians
• make days with an elevated fire danger rating       have demonstrated their ability to work together
  more frequent                                       to plan and deliver activities on public and
• extend the area that experiences extreme            private land to mitigate bushfire risk. As with all
  weather conditions, increasing the frequency        areas of emergency management, supporting
  of these for communities that may have never        communities to be safer and more resilient is the
  or have only infrequently experienced such          shared responsibility of all Victorians, not just of
  conditions                                          government agencies. To best manage bushfires,
• start the bushfire season earlier, with more        it is important that communities and government
  bushfires starting in spring (which may also        organisations come together to understand
  change fire weather conditions that are             bushfire risk, agree on strategies, and then work
  experienced, such as wind speed and direction)      both individually and collaboratively to fulfil their
                                                      individual and shared responsibilities.
• further strain available resources and capacity
  as the bushfire season increasingly overlaps with   Actions that agencies are responsible for include
  suitable weather periods for planned burning.       issuing fire danger warnings and advice, reducing
                                                      fuel through planned burning and mechanical
The impacts of climate change on fire-sensitive       treatments, commissioning bushfire science
habitats and refugia for plants and animals will      research, and recruiting and training firefighters.
become increasingly important to manage.              Actions that community members are responsible
With climate change making many extreme               for include developing and practising a bushfire
weather events more frequent and more extreme,        plan, fully extinguishing campfires, preparing their
the impacts on communities are also likely to         property, and participating in community bushfire
increase. Of 15,700 disasters between 1980 to 2015,   preparedness activities and events. Actions we do
91% were weather related, and 51% of fatalities and   together include building an understanding of risk
79% of economic losses were caused by weather         in our area, sharing information through community
related extremes.1                                    and social channels, developing, practicing and
                                                      implementing plans to protect what is valued most
                                                      by the local community.

                                                      Resilient communities prepare better for bushfires.
                                                      They provide the volunteer workforce essential in
                                                      the response phase, and they are better able to face
                                                      the acute shocks and stresses of a bushfire and to
                                                      recover after it.

1   Department of Home Affairs, 2018
Grampians Bushfire Management Strategy 2020 - Fuel management Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas - Safer ...
6   Bushfire Management Strategy

    Victoria’s ‘shared responsibility’ approach           guarantee that bushfires will be consequence-free
    recognises that communities:                          for the community. Communities and individuals
    • are best-placed to understand and mitigate          have the responsibility to prepare their own plans,
      their risks and drive preparedness and recovery,    properties and assets to reduce the impact of
      including through their fundamentally important     bushfires. During major bushfires with far-reaching
      volunteer contribution                              consequences, land and fire agencies may not
                                                          always be able to coordinate and deliver the
    • have knowledge, expertise, capability and diverse
                                                          support the community may expect.
      perspectives to work with agencies to mitigate
      bushfire risk
    • have networks and relationships that help
                                                          Recognising the role of Victoria’s
      agencies identify and protect the things            Traditional Owners
      communities value, improve their capacity and
      create meaningful, sustainable solutions.           The Grampians region recognises the Victorian
                                                          Traditional Owner Cultural Fire Strategy, which
    The shared responsibility approach seeks to ensure:   aims to re-establish cultural fire with Traditional
    • the interests, values and expectations of           Owner led practices across Victoria, so Traditional
      stakeholders in, or members of, communities         Owners can heal Country and fulfil their rights
      are understood and considered in the planning       and obligations to care for Country. The Victorian
      process                                             Traditional Owner Cultural Fire Strategy provides a
                                                          set of principles and strategic priorities to facilitate
    • ownership of the planning process and
                                                          greater self-determination for Traditional Owners
      responsibility for implementing strategies are
                                                          and a framework for effective Traditional Owner-led
      broadly shared.
                                                          cultural fire management in Victoria. The strategy
    Shared responsibility does not mean equal             has an important role in informing the Joint Fuel
    responsibility: there are some areas where land       Management Program (JFMP) in consultation with
    and fire management agencies are better-placed        individual Traditional Owner groups. Traditional
    and have more resources and information to            Owners emphasise that cultural fire is applied to
    make decisions and act on them. Equally, while        achieve culturally meaningful objectives, but that
    agencies develop plans and implement programs         risk reduction is often a complementary outcome.
    for mitigation, planning, preparedness, response
    and recovery, governments or agencies cannot

    Photo credit: DELWP
Grampians Bushfire Management Strategy 2020 - Fuel management Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas - Safer ...
Grampians   7

Bushfire management planning

                                    Strategic planning
                  Considers                           Focuses activity like planned burning
                  long-term timeframes                and mechanical works in the most
                  (10-40+ years)                      effective places to reduce bushfire risk

                  Large geographic
                  scales                                Output = Bushfire Management Strategy

                              Operational planning
                                                      The Joint Fuel Management Program identifies
                  Medium term                         many fuel management activities – planned burning
                  time frames                         and mechanical works – within the strategy area

                  Determines how
                                                      Output = Programs of planned burns,
                  the strategy will be
                                                      mechanical works and engagement
                  implemented to
                                                      over one to three years
                  contribute to the
                  strategic objectives

                                     Tactical planning
                       Short timeframes across                        Output = detailed output
                       small land units                               about how a burn or
                                                                      activity will be conducted
                                                                      to meet objectives.

                       Describes how an individual burn
                       or fuel management activity will
                       be implemented to meet objectives
                       eg. lighting patterns, ignition time,
                       fuel moisture parameters

Figure 1.   Bushfire management strategic, operational and tactical planning for fuel
Grampians Bushfire Management Strategy 2020 - Fuel management Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas - Safer ...
8   Bushfire Management Strategy

    Bushfire management planning occurs at different         eight regional emergency management plans.
    levels, with varying time frames, focuses and            In combination with the municipal emergency
    outputs. Figure 1 shows fuel management planning         management plans, these provide for an
    at strategic, operational and tactical levels.           integrated, coordinated and comprehensive
                                                             approach to emergency management. The Act
    Strategic planning                                       also requires emergency management plans to
                                                             contain provisions providing for the mitigation of,
    The strategic planning process identifies where          response to and recovery from emergencies and
    important values and assets are located across           to specify the emergency management roles and
    the landscape. It considers the current extent and       responsibilities of agencies
    quality of these values and where possible considers   • the Conservation Forests and Lands Act 1987,
    future trends including population, industry and         which requires the Department of Environment,
    environmental change. Strategic planning identifies      Land, Water and Planning (DELWP), through
    objectives for the important values and assets,          the Code of Practice for Bushfire Management
    and develops an approach to manage the risks             on Public Land (2012), to develop a risk-based
    posed to them. The resulting bushfire management         approach to bushfire management on public
    strategies describe landscape zones that focus           land. This document meets the requirements set
    fuel management activities to deliver bushfire risk      out in the Code of Practice to prepare a strategic
    reduction and ecological outcomes.                       bushfire management plan.
    Strategic bushfire management planning takes           • Safer Together: A new approach to reducing
    place within a legislative and policy context which      the risk of bushfire in Victoria (2015), a Victorian
    includes:                                                Government policy, focuses on how effective
                                                             our actions are in reducing risk and not just the
    • the Emergency Management Act 2013, which               amount of activity we undertake.
      requires from 1 December 2020 the Emergency
      Management Commissioner to prepare a state
      emergency management plan and to approve

    Photo credit: Steffen Schultz
Grampians     9

Operational and tactical planning                      Other bushfire management
This bushfire management strategy informs the          actions
development of operational plans, primarily the
                                                       This bushfire management strategy outlines our
Joint Fuel Management Program (JFMP). The JFMP
                                                       risk-based approach to fuel and ecological fire
is the three-year rolling statewide​program of fuel
                                                       management. However, fuel management is not
management works on public and private lands
                                                       the only bushfire management action that reduces
carried out by Forest Fire Management Victoria
                                                       bushfire risk and is not always the most effective
(FFMVic) and Country Fire Authority (CFA) to reduce
                                                       action to reduce that risk. Fuel management needs
bushfire risk and to maintain the health of native
                                                       to be supported with other actions for a number of
plants and animals that rely on fire to survive.
Works include planned burning, slashing, mowing
and clearing works, creating and maintaining           • Some parts of the landscape have inherently high
fuel breaks, and carrying out maintenance on fire        levels of bushfire risk which requires more actions
infrastructure (like fire dams and lookout towers).      to reduce that risk
                                                       • The ability to reduce risk through fuel
This strategy does not directly address tactical         management may be limited in some landscapes
(burn) planning, which is done for individual burns.     and there will always be fuel re-accumulation
Tactical planning can include individual burn
                                                       • The effectiveness of fuel management may be
objectives, community engagement plans and how
                                                         reduced under extreme weather conditions
the burn will be delivered safely.
                                                       • Fuel management reduces fire behaviour, it does
                                                         not eliminate bushfire. Suppression activities are
                                                         always required to control bushfires

                                                       Table 1 lists some key actions that agencies and
                                                       communities undertake together to manage
                                                       bushfire risk and complement our fuel management

                                                       As with fuel management, these actions are
                                                       guided by bushfire risk analysis combined
                                                       with other information to ensure they are most
                                                       effective. Strategies and plans for these actions
                                                       are developed through emergency management
                                                       planning processes by agencies at the state,
                                                       regional and municipal levels.
10   Bushfire Management Strategy

     Table 1.     Bushfire management approaches beyond fuel management

       Approach          Key actions

       Reduce            • Education and advertising campaigns (e.g. campfire safety, reporting ignitions)
       bushfire          • Coordinated, risk-based patrolling
                         • Deterrence for deliberate or negligent ignition – laws/prosecution
       prevention        • Monitoring arsonists
       activities        • Restrictions – fire danger period and total fire ban triggers, duration and restrictions
                           (including legislative change)
                         • Reducing ignitions from powerlines

       Increase the      • Fire detection (towers, aerial surveillance)
       effectiveness     • Resourcing, capacity and capability of fire-fighting resources (fire crews, contractors,
       of fire             incident management teams)
                         • Aircraft fleet management: type, distribution, availability and pre-determined dispatch
                         • Road infrastructure including maintenance of the strategic fire access road network
                           and network of fuel reduced areas.
                         • Other fire response infrastructure maintenance including remote water access and
                         • Fire readiness including rostered and pre-formed Incident Management Teams and
                           fire crews

       Reduce            • Planned burning based on tenure-blind risk
       bushfire          • Strategic breaks and burn unit boundary standards
       spread and
                         • Flexible delivery of burning (e.g. managed bushfire, unbounded burns)
                         • Other forms of fuel management (e.g. slashing, spraying, mulching) particularly in
                           high-risk areas where planned burning is not suitable
                         • Identify and effectively manage fuel hazard reduction on private bush

       Reduce the        • Domestic property preparedness in towns, including fire prevention notices, penalties
       physical            and cost recovery
       effects of        • Vegetation management on public and private land within or immediately bordering
       bushfires in        towns including implementation of fire prevention notices
                         • Identification, prioritisation and treatment of risk to critical infrastructure
                         • Access and egress (roadside vegetation/tree maintenance) pre- and post-fire
                         • Asset protection (on-ground)

       Reduce            • Bushfire education programs targeting vulnerable communities including those with
       the social          identified at-risk or changing demographics, and/or where bushfire risk cannot be
       effects of          effectively reduced through planned burning.
       bushfires on      • Recovery planning and relationship building pre-bushfire (e.g. via community groups,
       communities         scenario events and activities)
                         • Municipal bushfire plans
                         • Warnings and advice messaging
                         • Personal and neighbourhood bushfire plans

       Reduce            • Community engagement about fire management and smoke impacts
       impacts           • Planning to minimise impacts on biodiversity, cultural heritage and other values
       from fire
                         • Connections between planning and delivery (e.g. on-ground staff aware of
                           biodiversity/cultural sites and mitigation actions)
                         • Cross-tenure planning and consultation
                         • Monitoring effectiveness of mitigations (and subsequent improvement)
Grampians    11

                                                          • our Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas (BREAs),
About this bushfire                                         which focus on targeted community engagement
management strategy                                         to complement, inform and drive fuel
                                                            management and other risk mitigation activities
Victorian landscapes, environments and                      on public and private land.
communities are diverse and multifaceted, and
Victorian communities have diverse values,                The strategy is a supplement to the Grampians
preferences and priorities. This regional bushfire        Regional Strategic Fire Management Plan,
management strategy reflects our region’s unique          developed by the Grampians RSFMPC, and applies
environments and communities. To develop this             to the same Grampians emergency management
strategy, we undertook a regional planning process        region footprint. The plan’s agreed vision, strong
that was guided by the knowledge and priorities           leadership and greater cooperation between
of experts, stakeholders and community members            agencies promotes greater community resilience
from Grampians region.                                    through effective engagement and best-practice
                                                          integrated fire management planning.
Between November 2017 and September 2019,
representatives of CFA, DELWP, Parks Victoria,            Regional emergency management plans and
Emergency Management Victoria and local                   municipal emergency management plans are being
governments engaged in a strategic bushfire risk          prepared in line with the new amendments to the
management planning process. The process was              Emergency Management Act 2013. This strategy will
guided by the Grampians Regional Strategic Fire           help inform the bushfire components of these plans,
Management Planning Committee (RSFMPC),                   now and into the future.
through the regional Safer Together Coordinating
                                                          For the purpose of the Code of Practice for Bushfire
Committee and Working Group. They offered
                                                          Management on Public Land (2012), the FFMVic
opportunities to stakeholders and the broader
                                                          Chief Fire Officer has approved the public land
regional community to be involved in the planning
                                                          components of this strategy: specifically, where the
process through both in-person and online
                                                          strategy relates to state forests, parks administered
                                                          under the National Parks Act 1975 and protected
Our bushfire management strategy focuses on:              public land. These components of the strategy
                                                          will directly guide FFMVic’s fuel management
• reducing the risk of bushfires threatening lives,
                                                          operations. This strategy replaces the former
  homes, the environment and other important
                                                          Strategic Bushfire Management Plans for public
  values and assets across the landscape
                                                          land, published by DELWP and PV in 2014 and 2015,
• maintaining or improving the resilience of              which used bushfire risk landscape footprints.
• establishing a shared understanding of bushfire
  risk across the sector, based on the latest
  science and the extensive knowledge of agency
• using a 40-year horizon, so long-term ecological
  changes and fuel accumulation rates can be
  considered in annual operational planning

The strategic planning process resulted in two
strategies to reduce bushfire risk and maintain
ecosystem health: together, they comprise this
strategy — the Grampians Bushfire Management
Strategy 2020.

The individual strategies are:
• our fuel management strategy, which focuses on
  reducing bushfire fuels through planned burning
  and mechanical works (mowing and slashing) on
  public land

                                                      Photo credit: DELWP
12   Bushfire Management Strategy

     Method overview                                          Identifying and assessing risk to
     This document presents the outcomes of the               values and assets
     strategic bushfire management planning process.
                                                              The planning process identified values and assets
     The planning process involved considerable               across the region and modelled the impact
     community engagement — with individuals,                 bushfires and fuel management would have on
     private land managers, businesses, community             them. Values are the ultimate durable reasons we
     organisations and other stakeholders — to tap into       care about managing bushfires, and assets are
     their knowledge, understand their priorities, discuss    the physical sites that represent these values. For
     and evaluate options with them and prepare to            example, we value native species, and the locations
     involve them in implementing the strategy.               of their populations and habitat are the assets we
                                                              protect to ensure their continued existence.
     In the planning process, we:
                                                              To identify the region’s most important values and
     • identified the values and assets that are most
                                                              assets, we consulted with our partners, stakeholders
       important to the residents of and visitors to
                                                              and communities, and we drew on specialised data
       the region: we grouped these into human
                                                              sets including the Victorian Fire Risk Register –
       life, economy – industries and agriculture,
                                                              Bushfire (VFRR-B) and Victorian Biodiversity Atlas.
       infrastructure, nature and heritage
     • developed regional objectives: the things we want      We used Phoenix RapidFire, which is world-leading
       to achieve by implementing the strategy                bushfire simulation software developed in Victoria,
     • combined local knowledge, bushfire behaviour           to model the spread of a bushfire from an ignition
       modelling, historical data and the best-available      point under the specified weather conditions. This
       science to understand how bushfires behave             enables us to understand the impact bushfires
       in our region and to forecast bushfire and fuel        could have on people, homes and other important
       management strategy impacts on our most                values and assets in our landscape. We modelled
       important and at-risk values and assets                ignitions and bushfire spread patterns at thousands
                                                              of places throughout the region:
     • developed and evaluated many potential strategies
       to select two — our fuel management strategy           • using ignition likelihood models based on
       and the Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas (BREAs)           historical ignition characteristics and patterns
       — that will enable agencies and communities to         • using the bushfire characteristics information in
       best mitigate bushfire risk to the region’s most         the ‘Bushfire history and patterns’ section
       important and at-risk values and assets.               • under a range of bushfire weather conditions,
                                                                including Code Red conditions: a Forest Fire
     The planning process was underpinned by the
                                                                Danger Index (FFDI) rating of 130 or above. These
     International Standard for Risk Management ISO
                                                                were the conditions in many parts of the state on
     31000. The standard acknowledges that risk can
                                                                Black Saturday 2009, and conditions were similar
     never be completely eliminated. Bushfires will still
                                                                at times during the 2019–20 fire season. Code
     occur, and we must all be prepared and ready to
                                                                Red conditions are also forecast to become more
     respond. However, bushfire risk can be reduced with
                                                                frequent and more extreme with climate change.
     a high-quality risk management approach.
                                                              We also used a new 20-year historical weather
     The planning process followed the principles
                                                              dataset for Victoria to identify recent changes to
     of structured decision making (SDM). SDM is a
                                                              the state’s climate and so we could better model
     framework that helps people unpack complex
                                                              the average frequency with which various weather
     decisions, navigate trade-offs and make logical
                                                              scenarios occur. This provided some indication of
     and transparent choices. It provides a means of
                                                              the likelihood of these scenarios occurring in future.
     bringing together both scientific information and
                                                              We also partnered with climate scientists to forecast
     human values to make decisions, through analysis
                                                              various climate conditions relevant to bushfires
     and inclusive deliberation. The principles of SDM
                                                              which will inform future strategic bushfire risk
     are particularly useful in decision-making contexts
                                                              management planning and preparedness decisions.
     characterised by uncertainty, multiple stakeholders
     and competing objectives. Broadly, the SDM steps         Core measures we used in our planning process
     involved included understanding the landscape            to predict ecological responses to fire included
     context, setting objectives, identifying possible        potential changes to the tolerable fire interval (TFI)
     management strategies, and estimating and                and geometric mean abundance (GMA) of species
     analysing the consequences and inherent trade-           in a community. We also considered high value
     offs of these strategy options. We then selected the     ecological areas as part of developing, evaluating
     strategy that gives the greatest benefit to the things   and selecting bushfire management strategies.
     we care about, while balancing the impacts of fuel
     management actions on those same values.
Grampians        13

Vegetation recovery after fire.
 Photo credit: Glenn Rudolph
14   Bushfire Management Strategy

     Our landscape context
     The Grampians region is the second-largest region in Victoria, covering an area of
     approximately 20 per cent (4.6 million ha) of the state (Figure 2). The region is bounded
     by the South Australian border to the west, the Loddon Mallee region to the north-east,
     the Metropolitan region to the east and the Barwon South West region to the south. The
     region is home to 4% of Victoria’s population, and it encompasses the local government
     areas of Ararat, Moorabool, Ballarat, Northern Grampians, Golden Plains, Pyrenees,
     Hepburn, West Wimmera, Hindmarsh, Yarriambiack and Horsham. The public land estate
     comprises 21.6% of the regional footprint. The major industries are health care and social
     assistance, agriculture, education and training and retail trade (including tourism).
Grampians       15

                                                                                 Photo credit: DELWP

Figure 2.   The Grampians region with local government boundaries and public land tenure
16   Bushfire Management Strategy

 Local government profiles
        Ararat Rural City                                      Hepburn Shire
        (population 11,795)                                    (population 15,330)
 Ararat is located in the northern area of the              Approximately 45% of the shire’s population is
 municipality, which also includes the settlements          scattered through numerous small townships,
 of Pomonol, Elmhurst, Moyston, Warrak, Buangor,            hamlets and rural localities, which are often in
 Maroona, Mininera, Wickliffe, Lake Bolac, Westmere         forested or semi-forested environments. Many low-
 and Streathem. The hills extending north and               density residential developments have resulted in
 west of Ararat have retained areas of remnant              significant areas of privately-owned forest. The shire
 vegetation identified as being of high and very high       has many areas of high-quality soils, which provide
 conservation significance including the Ararat Hills       the base for important horticultural and cropping
 Park and other state parks. The north-eastern area         activities. Areas of poorer-quality soils have not
 of the municipality contains the Langi Ghiran, Mount       been cleared for agriculture and much remains as
 Cole and Mount Buangor State Parks and scattered           Crown land. The forests are used for firewood and
 rural settlements. The Grampians National Park             minor forest produce, beekeeping, water-catchment
 extends across the north-western corner of the             protection, outdoor recreation activities and flora
 municipality.                                              and fauna conservation. The shire is renowned for
                                                            its mineral springs, with over 72 known in the region.
                                                            The population of the Daylesford–Hepburn corridor
        City of Ballarat                                    increases greatly during weekends and holiday
                                                            periods, as it is a very popular tourist destination.
        (population 107,325)
 Ballarat is one of Australia’s largest inland cities and
 the third largest city in Victoria. The City of Ballarat      Hindmarsh Shire
 municipality covers an area of 740 square kilometres          (population 5,741)
 and includes the outlying townships of Buninyong,
 Miners Rest, Learmonth and Cardigan Village. Due to        The four largest settlements in the shire are Nhill,
 being located centrally in Western Victoria, Ballarat      Jeparit, Dimboola and Rainbow. The shire’s major
 services a large regional population. The municipality     industry is agriculture. Many of the businesses in these
 includes several parks, reserves and forests including;    settlements are highly connected to the agricultural
 Woowookarung Regional Park, Mount Buninyong State          sector. Jeparit and Nhill experience an increase in
 Reserve, Glen Park State Forest, Nerrina Heritage Area     population from spring through to autumn. The shire
 and a section of Creswick State Forest.                    contains large portions of two national parks — Big
                                                            Desert National Park and Wyperfeld National Park —
                                                            as well as other reserves scattered across the shire.
        Golden Plains Shire                                 Lakes Hindmarsh and Albacutya and the shire’s other
                                                            wetlands and rivers are home to a range of birdlife.
        (population 23,120)                                 Lake Hindmarsh also provides many recreational
                                                            opportunities, and when the lake contains water it is a
 The shire is predominantly rural, with several             key spot for locals and visitors to camp.
 small settlements servicing local communities
 between Ballarat and Geelong. The shire covers
 an area of 2,703 km2, and includes the settlements            Horsham Rural City Council
 of Bannockburn, Dereel, Gheringhap, Lethbridge,
 Linton, Berringa, Teesdale, Rokewood and Meredith.            (population 19,642)
 The shire is the fifth-fastest-growing municipality
                                                            Horsham has a population of about 14,543 people,
 in regional Victoria, and many residents work in
                                                            with the remainder of the population scattered across
 Ballarat or Geelong. The shire’s economic base is
                                                            the municipality in smaller localities. This municipality
 provided through agriculture, retailing, construction
                                                            provides a connection between the northern section
 and manufacturing. Agriculture is responsible for
                                                            of the Grampians National Park, the end of the Great
 $144 million worth of output annually, and it employs
                                                            Dividing Range and the Little Desert National Park,
 25.6% of the shire’s workforce. The main industries are
                                                            which abuts the northern boundary. Mt Arapiles-Tooan
 agriculture (wool and grain growing, intensive poultry
                                                            State Park, Jilpanger Nature Conservation Reserve,
 and pig farming), construction and wine-making.
                                                            Black Range State Park and Rocklands Reservoir are
                                                            also located within the municipality. There are numerous
                                                            smaller state forests and nature conservation reserves
                                                            scattered throughout and many private bushland blocks
Grampians       17

and vegetated roadsides and corridors. The heritage-                   Pyrenees Shire
listed Wimmera River is the dominant feature of the
municipality, with several smaller rivers and creeks                   (population 7, 353)
joining it before or close to Horsham. Yarriambiack
Creek is sourced from the Wimmera River upstream                  The shire includes the towns of Avoca, Beaufort,
of Horsham. Connected to this intricate system of                 Lexton and Trawalla, and boasts several significant
waterways are a number of recreational lakes. Some are            flora and fauna species including Mt Cole and
part of the water management system serving towns                 Ben Major Grevillea, Legless lizard, 200 species of
and farms in the region. Others are naturally filled lakes        protected grasses, White gums and Platypus. The
and swamps that are seasonal. These sites provide a               municipality has many state parks, forests and
range of opportunities (such as camping, skiing, hunting          reserves. These include Pyrenees Range State Forest,
and fishing) for people. The main season for many of              Landsborough Nature Conservation Reserve, Mt Cole
these activities is spring and summer, when the seasonal          State Forest, Langi Ghiran and more. There are over
population increases in the area.                                 50 wind turbines within the shire’s boundaries, with
                                                                  almost another 200 planned for construction in the
                                                                  shire. Agriculture is the shire’s main industry, with
                                                                  81% of land use in the region devoted to agricultural
     Moorabool Shire                                              production.
     (population 32,311)
Moorabool Shire is a semi-rural municipality nestled                   West Wimmera Shire
between Melbourne, Geelong and Ballarat. The shire
includes the towns of Bacchus Marsh, Blackwood, Ballan                 (population 3,903)
and Gordon. Surrounded by State parks and forests the
shire is rich with hiking trails, heritage sites, luscious food   Rural land use comprises over 80% of total land use in
and wine, parks and gardens. Seventy-four percent of              the shire, with less than 3% used for business, industrial
this shire is water catchment, state forest and national          or residential purposes. The main settlements are
park including Lerderderg State Park, Wombat State                Edenhope, Kaniva, Harrow, Goroke and Apsley, and
Forest, Brisbane Ranges National Park and Werribee                smaller settlements include Serviceton, Chetwynd,
Gorge State Park. The shire is environmentally diverse,           Dergholm, Lillimur and Miram. The major waterway is
and its topography is characterised by great ranges,              the Glenelg River, which is located in the south of the
plains and rugged river gorges. Some of the many                  shire. The major land use across the shire is agriculture.
reservoirs in the shire are the Lal Lal, Bostock, Pykes           The shire is divided in two by the Little Desert National
Creek, Moorabool and Korweinguboora reservoirs. The               Park, which separates the Red Gum grazing plains
shire also includes three major rivers: the Werribee,             from the sandy Mallee vegetation. There are a number
Lerderderg and Moorabool rivers.                                  of other public land forests and reserves scattered
                                                                  throughout the shire, mainly consisting of brown
                                                                  stringybark vegetation associated with the poorer
                                                                  soils. A large number of naturally filled wetlands are
     Northern Grampians Shire                                     scattered across the southern section of the shire,
     (population 11,845)                                          providing a range of recreational opportunities and
                                                                  significant environmental assets.
The shire lies on the north-east side of the Grampians
National Park and is situated between the rural cities of
Ballarat, Bendigo and Horsham. The main population
centres include; Stawell, St Arnaud, Great Western                     Yarriambiack Shire
and Halls Gap. During peak tourism periods and                         (population 6,674)
major events, the visitor population often exceeds the
permanent population. The Grampians National Park, in             Rural land use comprises over 90% of the shire,
particular, experiences a large number of both domestic           and less than 3% is used for non-agricultural
and international visitors over the summer period. The            business, industrial or residential purposes. The
Grampians National Park (Gariwerd) is also one of                 main population centres of the municipality are
the richest Aboriginal rock-art sites in south-eastern            Warracknabeal, Murtoa, Hopetoun, Minyip, Rupanyup,
Australia. The municipality covers some 590,000 ha of             Woomelang and Beulah. There are a number of small
a wide range of land types, from steep, mountainous,              farming communities located throughout the shire,
forested country to flat grazing and cropping lands. The          which produces one quarter of Victoria’s total grain
settlement of Halls Gap contains large areas of privately         production (predominantly wheat and barley) and
owned remnant vegetation. The municipality contains               is also noted for its production of lamb and wool. In
several endemic flora species, including the Pomonal              recent years, the shire has also become rich in oilseed
Leek Orchid. The main watercourse is the Wimmera                  and legume crops. Areas of poorer-quality soils have
River, and there are a number of water storages                   not been cleared for agriculture, and much remains
including Lake Wartook, Lake Fyans, Lake Bellfield, Lake          as public land. Floristically rich, these localities are
Lonsdale and Teddington Reservoir.                                prized habitats for native fauna. The forests are used
                                                                  for beekeeping, water-catchment protection, outdoor
                                                                  recreation activities and flora and fauna conservation.
18   Bushfire Management Strategy

                                                              hectares and approximately 47% of the Grampians
     Bushfire history and patterns                            National Park. Since 2006, Grampians National Park
     The largest 2% of fires that have been recorded          has experienced another 2 large scale fires, both
     within the Grampians region are shown in Figure 3.       caused by lightning. These 3 fires have impacted
     Larger fires have occurred routinely at two locations    roughly 85% of the Grampians National Park and
     in the Grampians region: the Big Desert and the          have had significant impact on communities,
     Grampians National Park. This is likely due to these     tourism and agriculture in the region.
     landscapes being remote, challenging for firefighting
                                                              The eastern half of the Grampians region is where
     and having high amounts of continuous vegetation.
                                                              the greatest bushfire risk sits, particularly for
     Historically, south-western Victoria has suffered        settlements in and around the Wombat State Forest
     huge losses of property in bushfire events (such as      and Lerderderg State Park, such as Daylesford,
     the 1942 fires in the Western District that destroyed    Trentham and Gisborne. In 1983, on Ash Wednesday,
     over 500 houses), and bushfires have also had            a fire claimed seven people’s lives in the Macedon,
     a huge impact on the local pastoral industry. In         East Trentham area. The fire reached a final size
     recent years, there have been significant house          of 29,500 hectares, destroying 157 homes and 628
     losses from bushfires in the northern Grampians          other buildings. Whilst fires of this size have not
     and the Enfield area.                                    occurred since, the potential consequence of large
                                                              fires in this area remains high.
     Within the region, there are significant contrasts
     between the bushfire history of different areas.         The area south of Ballarat is also high risk, driven by
     For example, there are no major fires on record in       the Enfield State Park and surrounding state forest.
     Yarriambiack Shire, whereas Hepburn Shire has            This is due to the larger population that resides in
     a record of building losses to bushfire. In the last     these localities, as well as the number of settlements
     10–15 years, there have been many major fires in         located near forests.
     the Grampians and Little Desert National Parks,
                                                              In the western half of the Grampians region, a larger
     which are particularly prone to lightning ignitions.
                                                              number of property losses are likely to occur within
     One example is the Mt Lubra fire which ignited by
                                                              settlements, due to the density of the population.
     lightning in the Grampians National Park on the
                                                              The highest loss within this area is modelled to
     20th of January 2006. The fire resulted in the loss of
                                                              occur in Halls Gap, due to the density of population
     3 lives and hundreds of buildings. Over a two-week
                                                              and its location within the Grampians National Park.
     period, the Mt Lubra fire had burnt over 127,000
Grampians   19

Figure 3.   Bushfire history for the Grampians region, 1980–2019

                                       The Mt Lubra bushfire burnt 47% of the
                                      Grampians National Park in 2006 and
                                     resulted in the loss of 3 lives.
                                    Photo credit: Glenn Rudolph
20   Bushfire Management Strategy

                                                          Critical infrastructure values
     Values and assets
                                                          The Grampians region includes several critical
     Here we describe the most important features of
                                                          infrastructure values that have a higher risk
     our landscape that informed our strategy.
                                                          of impact from bushfire. They include Ballarat
                                                          University and Technology Park, the State Library
     Human landscape                                      Storage Facility and several communications towers
                                                          (such as those on Mount Cole and Mount William)
     Life and property                                    (Figure 4).
     The population of the Grampians region is about
     214,600 people. The major population centres are
     Ballarat, Horsham, Bacchus Marsh, Ararat, Stawell,
     Daylesford, Hepburn and Beaufort. Parts of the
     region experience a significant influx of tourists
     over weekends and holiday periods, particularly
     Daylesford, Hepburn Springs, Halls Gap and the
     Grampians National Park.

     Figure 4.   Critical infrastructure, assets, systems and networks in the Grampians region
Grampians   21

Economic values
The Grampians has different economic
characteristics across the region including mineral
resources, dryland farming, service industries and
manufacturing. Agriculture is a major land use in
the region, and over half of Victoria’s grain is grown
in Yarriambick Shire. The Daylesford – Macedon
corridor and Halls Gap are major tourism centres on
weekends and during holiday periods. Horticulture
and viticulture are important industries, especially in
Hepburn Shire (Figure 5).

Figure 5.    Generalised land use in the Grampians region
22   Bushfire Management Strategy

                                                               A Wimmera Co-operative Management Agreement
     Aboriginal cultural heritage                              was formalised in 2005. This agreement is between
     The Registered Aboriginal Parties in our region           the State and the Wotjobaluk, Jaadwa, Jadawadjali,
     (Figure 6) are:                                           Wergaia and Jupagalk Traditional Owners, with
     • Barengi Gadjin Land Council Aboriginal                  Barengi Gadjin Land Council Aboriginal Corporation
        Corporation                                            as the representative body. The agreement
                                                               established the Winyula Council to advise the
     • Gunditj Mirring Traditional Owners Aboriginal           State on the management of those lands. The
       Corporation                                             relationship is now maintained directly between
     • Eastern Maar Aboriginal Corporation                     Barengi Gadjin Land Council Aboriginal Corporation
     • Dja Dja Wurrung Clans Aboriginal Corporation            and PV. Co-managed lands under this agreement
     • Wathaurung Aboriginal Corporation                       include: Lake Albacutya Park, Lake Hindmarsh Lake
                                                               Reserve, Little Desert National Park, Mount Arapiles-
     • Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung Cultural Heritage                Tooan State Park, Wimmera River Heritage Area
       Aboriginal Corporation.                                 Park and Wyperfeld National Park.
     Well-known Aboriginal sites in the region include         In the Grampians Region, Kara Kara National Park
     Langi Ghiran; Lal Lal Falls, believed to be the earthly   and Hepburn Regional Park are jointly managed
     home of Bunjil, the Creator to most Victorian             with Dja Dja Wurrung under a Recognition and
     Aboriginal groups; and Taylors Rock in the Mt             Settlement Agreement. The agreement also covers
     Arapiles-Tooan State Park. The Grampians National         joint management of other parks extending into
     Park (Gariwerd) is one of the richest Aboriginal rock-    the Loddon Mallee region. Joint management is
     art sites in south-eastern Australia. In addition, the    overseen by the Dhelkunya Dja Land Management
     region has many Aboriginal cultural heritage sites        Board. Hepburn Regional Park encompasses
     including ceremonial gathering places, burial sites,      Mt Franklin, one of the most significant cultural
     scar trees and artefact scatters.                         heritage places in Victoria.

     Figure 6.    Traditional Owner groups in the Grampians region
Grampians   23

Lal Lal Falls, believed to be the earthly
     home of Bunjil, the Creator to most
              Victorian Aboriginal groups.

                 Photo credit: Josh Bushell
24   Bushfire Management Strategy

                                                               Native vegetation in the eastern side of the region
     Natural landscape                                         has been highly disturbed and fragmented in many
     The region’s 1.052 million ha public land estate is       areas, particularly during the Gold Rush from 1851
     comprised of a network of parks, reserves and state       to the late 1860s as well as from grazing, cropping,
     forest, which is built upon the national criteria for     timber harvesting and urban development. During
     a comprehensive, adequate and representative              the Gold Rush, many forests right across the
     (CAR) reserve system of Australia’s forests (Figure 7).   goldfields underwent intensive digging and clearing,
     The forests and parks in the region are diverse and       accompanied by extensive timber cutting for
     include heath desert in the west, rocky outcrops in       infrastructure and firewood.
     the Grampians National Park, fragmented forests
     south of Ballarat and wetter forests near Macedon.
     Parks and reserves are primarily managed for
     nature conservation, ecosystem services and
     recreation. State forest is managed for a greater
     diversity of purposes including biodiversity
     conservation, water catchment services, timber
     harvesting, firewood production, minor produce
     and apiary use. Recreation and tourism are also
     an important and increasingly popular use of
     state forest, with many active and passive pursuits
     commonplace across the Grampians region.

     Photo credit: Steffen Schultz
Grampians        25

Figure 7.   Native vegetation by land tenure in the Grampians region

                                                                       Photo credit: Steffen Schultz
26   Bushfire Management Strategy

     South-eastern Red-tailed Black-
     The South-eastern Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo               important for the health of the highly flammable
     is a rare, large, nomadic cockatoo found only in          stringybark woodlands: bushfires are common and
     south-west Victoria and south-east South Australia.       the vegetation’s reproductive cycle depends on
     The Victorian and Commonwealth governments                fire. However, fire damage to the tree canopy (or
     recognise it as threatened, and it is one of Victoria’s   crown) also reduces (for about 10 years) the amount
     most fire-sensitive fauna species. A national             of seeds stringybark trees produce, reducing
     recovery team, formed in 1997, coordinates the            the cockatoo’s food source. This is particularly
     management and recovery of the cockatoo. DELWP            important during breeding season, when the
     has actively participated in this team since its          species’ food requirements are highest. This balance
     inception.                                                of limiting crown scorch in stringybark forests from
                                                               planned burning operations whilst reducing the risk
     The cockatoo is mainly restricted to stringybark
                                                               to other assets and maintaining an appropriate
     woodlands where it relies on the seeds of Brown
                                                               amount of fire for the forest’s ecological health
     stringybark and Desert stringybark for food. The
                                                               difficult, and one that will be addressed as part of
     extent of buloke clearing in the past is an important
                                                               the planning process.
     aspect of this reliance on stringybark seed for feed,
     as buloke is also an important food source. Fire is

                                                   Image 1.    The South-eastern Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo
                                                               is an endangered species found in south-west
                                                               Victoria, and it is of cultural significance to
                                                               Traditional Owners
                                                               Photo credit: Michael Sverns
Grampians    27

Greater Glider
The arboreal Greater Glider is found in the wetter          Adverse effects on Greater Glider populations
forest within the Wombat State Park. Although               subjected to fire can occur due to direct, short-
once considered common, Greater Gliders have                term mortality effects and loss of the canopy food
undergone substantial recent declines and are               source, as well as longer-term effects on habitat
now listed as threatened under the Flora & Fauna            structure and ecosystem function. Both planned
Guarantee Act 1988 (Vic) and Vulnerable under               and unplanned fires of relatively low intensity can
the Environment Protection and Biodiversity                 lead to accelerated collapse of hollow-bearing
Conservation Act 1999 (C’th).                               trees, which are a key habitat resource for Greater
                                                            Gliders. The incorporation of pre-, during, and post-
                                                            burn measures to reduce the risk of these impacts
                                                            can assist the species resilience in this forest.

                         Image 3.     The Greater Glider is a threatened species
                                      found in the Wombat State Park.
                                      Photo credit: Adam Whitchurch
28   Bushfire Management Strategy

     Our objectives
     What matters most in the Grampians region is        These values are the ultimate, durable reasons
     discussed in the landscape context section and is   why we care about managing bushfires, and they
     summarised into the following fundamental values:   are what we want to protect and manage through
     • Human life                                        bushfire management in the Grampians region.
     • Economy                                           The following regional objectives are derived from
     • Infrastructure                                    our values and articulate what we are aiming to
     • Nature                                            achieve in the Grampians region (Table 2). These
                                                         objectives contribute to the overall objectives for fire
     • Heritage.
                                                         management articulated in the Grampians Regional
                                                         Strategic Fire Management Plan.
Grampians       29

                                                                                          Photo credit: Glenn Rudolph

Table 2.     Grampians region’s values and objectives and how they align with the statewide vision,
             policy context and strategic objectives


                                    Safer and more resilient communities

                                                Policy context

 The Victorian Preparedness Goal is A safer and more resilient community that has the capabilities to
 withstand, plan for, respond to and recover from emergencies that pose the greatest risk.

 The Safer Together policy’s four priorities for reducing the risk of bushfires in Victoria are Community first,
 Land and fire agencies working together, Measuring success and Better knowledge = better decisions.

           Strategic objectives (Code of Practice for Bushfire Management on Public Land)

 • To minimise the impact of major bushfires on human life, communities, essential and community
   infrastructure, industries, the economy and the environment. Human life will be afforded priority over
   all other considerations
 • To maintain or improve the resilience of natural ecosystems and their ability to deliver services such as
   biodiversity, water, carbon storage and forest products.

                                         Grampians region values

     Human life             Economy             Infrastructure             Nature                 Heritage

                                       Grampians region objectives

   Minimise loss of     Reduce the risk of        Minimise loss           Maximise           Maximise cultural
  life and property     economic drivers         of community           persistence           heritage values
                         being impacted          infrastructure         of ecological
                           by bushfire                                communities and
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