Overview

Bushfire management strategies for many parks and forests in the Grampians region are being reviewed. This will help determine where and how risk reduction activities such as planned burning take place. Planning and managing the risk of bushfire is an ongoing and shared responsibility across public and private land.

The strategy presented below is based on 18 months of analysis, discussion and engagement to balance bushfire risk, the long-term health of our natural environment, and what you’ve told us you value the most and want to protect in your towns and favourite places.

Engagement for the West Wimmera area is included as part of the Barwon South West region review process to provide a consistent approach for the habitat of the South-eastern Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo.

In the proposed strategy, there will be no changes to the fuel management strategy in the Grampians National Park and the Little Desert National Park. This is due to our understanding of the risk to priority assets in these parks not changing since the last strategic bushfire management planning process.


Phase Three Engagement Summary Now Available

Please see the Phase Three report in the Document Library, which outlines the quantitative and qualitative summary of the community feedback received during phase three of our engagement.

Regional strategies will be finalised and made available in October 2019.

Phase 3 Engagement

The Proposed Final Strategy

By clicking on the links below, you will find detailed information about our chosen objectives, our proposed final fuel management strategy and the expected performance of our strategy. The maps below show how the strategy applies in the landscape.

During phase one, you told us what you thought the most important things to protect and preserve were. These values and objectives, together with input from scientists and partner agencies, helped develop four potential strategies which formed the basis for engagement during phase two. In this phase, we also got a better understanding what is already happening on private land to reduce bushfire fuels, and what is needed to help in this work. In June, we shared all the results so far to test what we had heard and provided an additional opportunity to add new voices.

Below is a summary of the key things we heard throughout the engagement process and how this information has informed the final proposed strategy. You can also download the detailed engagement summary reports from Phase 1, Phase 2 and the Phase 2 Additional Information report.

Who we heard from Feedback from 245 participants in the online consultations Ten placed based engagement events which captured the views and comments of community members 12 workshops with subject matter experts, practitioners and agency staff What we heard from you 90% were likely or extremely likely to manage fuels on their property. 82% expected others to reduce fuels 71% chose a strategy with both increased burning around and treatments away from townships. Slightly more preferred the treatments away from townships to be focused on maintaining a healthy environment than on reducing risk to roads, infrastructure, tourism and agriculture. 70% indicated they required some help with managing bushfire fuels on their own property, with 33% of these selecting two or more support methods. 74% saw a benefit to land managers and fire agencies considering forested private land in their fuel management planning. Most felt that private landowners were solely or mostly responsible for managing fuels on private land, with fire agencies and local council seen as being somewhat responsible What we did with the information The feedback from surveys, community events and forums with stakeholders indicated very similar values and objective priorities. The objectives and priorities became the foundation for developing the four potential strategy options. The work people are already doing on their properties to reduce fuel shows an acceptance of the shared responsibility towards bushfire risk. It shows agencies how communities wish to be supported and how we can work more closely together to plan fuel reduction across adjoining public and private land. All information is considered in the SBMP committee decision-making, along with balancing bushfire risk, ecological needs and required resources based on scientific modelling, flora and fauna studies, agency experience and community feedback.

The objectives you said were the most important were:

  • Minimise loss of life and property.
  • Reduce the risk of economic drivers being impacted by bushfire.
  • Maximise health and biodiversity of ecological communities and species.
  • Minimise loss of infrastructure.
  • Maximise cultural heritage values.

For this final phase, we are pleased to be able to show you the proposed strategy for the Grampians region, and to demonstrate how we have strived to incorporate your feedback and views into the decision-making process in the areas included in this review. The information below shows you how the chosen strategy performs against your objectives, the management priorities in different zones, and the areas where fuel reduction activities would provide the best protection for nearby communities.

We use a combination of modelling and experience to determine the location of zones and priority areas based on understanding potential house losses, the level of protection for townships and infrastructure, fire behaviour under different conditions, and how bushfires might be slowed across the Grampians landscape.

This fuel management strategy reflects our plan for how we will broadly use planned burning, mechanical treatments and other techniques to reduce the fuel hazards in key areas. Our strategy will also focus on the following methods to enable a more unified and effective approach to fuel management:

  • Link broad scale fuel management with other fuel management activities along priority egress routes for high risk towns.
  • Link weed management works in high fire risk areas with risk reduction outcomes.
  • Identify priority fuel management areas (as shown) with a view to:
    • better inform the community of their risk from bushfire,
    • work with the community to facilitate community members reducing the fuel hazard on their property,
    • link works in plantations with the risk reduction objectives for high fire risk communities.

The fuel management strategy is a long term guide for fire agencies to reduce bushfire risk through managing fuels. It uses Fire Management Zones (FMZ) on public land and Priority Fuel Management Areas (PFMAs) on public and private land to identify areas of land where fuel treatment will impact on bushfire risk and other values like endangered species and infrastructure assets.

Fire Management Zones articulate how much and what type of fuel management will take place in that area, as well as how often the fuel management activity will take place. Each of the four FMZs differs in its intended fuel treatment aims and associated performance measures:

  • Asset Protection Zone (red) - Aim to reduce fuel through planned burning or other methods approximately every 5 to 7 years.
  • Bushfire Moderation Zone (orange) - Aim to reduce fuel through planned burning or other methods approximately every 8 to 15 years. Length of time between planned burns in some areas can vary due to ecological considerations.
  • Landscape Management Zone (green) - Planned burning will focus on maintaining and improving ecosystem resilience, and fuel management will also be undertaken for risk reduction.
  • Planned Burning Exclusion Zone (turquoise) - No planned burning, mainly to protect particular areas that can’t tolerate fire.

Priority Fuel Management Areas show where bushfire fuel treatments will most effectively reduce long-term bushfire risk to communities. Bushfire fuels include anything that can burn in a bushfire, such as dried grass, shrubs, branches, sticks, bark and leaf litter. Bushfire fuel treatments can include activities such as slashing, physical removal, grazing, mulching and planned burning. The choice of treatment will depend on the area’s risk, vegetation types, land use, community preferences and other values that are important. Not all land within PFMAs can or should be treated. Fuel treatments planned as part of PFMA implementation can only occur with the landowner’s consent. Treatments may be carried out by an individual landowner, a community planning together, and/or fire agencies such as the Country Fire Authority (CFA) and Forest Fire Management Victoria (FFMVic). More information of PFMAs is available in our frequently asked questions (FAQs).

You can also download our maps to see them in more detail.

Survey Questions

We would like to hear your thoughts about our fuel management strategy. Your feedback will be helpful to understand how well our strategy reflects community expectations and help to inform future work as we move into implementation.

1. How do you feel about the proposed fuel management strategy? Required
You have 500 characters left.
3. What element of the fuel management strategy most influenced your decision?
4. Having considered the new fuel management strategy and seen the Priority Fuel Management Areas (PFMAs), how likely would you be to reduce bushfire fuels on your own property?
Very unlikely
Unlikely
Reasonably likely
Likely
Very likely
I have no fuels on my property
Please choose the most appropriate answer
5. Implementation of the fuel management strategy will involve fire management agencies (such as CFA and Forest Fire Management Victoria), local government and communities. How likely are you to be involved with fuel management activities in your area?
Very unlikely
Unlikely
Reasonably likely
Likely
Very likely
Please choose the most appropriate answer
6. Were you involved in any previous engagement opportunities for this strategic planning process?

Please tick all that apply

7. If you have been involved in any previous engagement opportunity, do you feel that your feedback has been considered?
Not considered at all
Somewhat considered
Moderately considered
Well considered
Considered a great extent
Please choose the most appropriate answer
8. We are committed to improving our engagement with communities. How do you think we could have improved our consultation throughout this planning process?
9. How confident are you in the overall process that was used to create this fuel management strategy? To answer, you could consider elements such as the science used, engagement undertaken, and final outcome.
Not at all confident
Slightly confident
Moderately confident
Fairly confident
Very confident
Please choose the most appropriate answer
You have 300 characters left.

Please rank the following options by their level of importance to you from highest to lowest, by dragging from the left-hand column to the right-hand column

  1. Improving suppression (responding to bushfires) #
  2. Preventing ignitions (bushfires starting) #
  3. Improving evacuations #
  4. Pre-planning by agencies to support community recovery after bushfires #
  5. Other (please specify) #
You have 150 characters left.
12. What is your interest in bushfire management in the Grampians region
13. How did you find out about this community consultation?

The survey form is now closed. Thanks for your contributions.

The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning is committed to protecting personal information provided by you in accordance with the principles of the Victorian privacy laws.

Purpose

This Privacy Collection Statement relates to all submissions collected in relation to the strategic bushfire management planning process being conducted across Victoria. Agencies involved in fire management across Victoria have been charged with undertaking a strategic planning process to guide bushfire management actions on public and private land into the future. The agencies involved in this process are Forest Fire Management Victoria (FFMVic), CFA, Local Government and Parks Victoria.

Forest Fire Management Victoria is providing administrative services to the consultation. FFMVic is part of the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (the Department) and submissions will be managed in accordance with the Department’s Information Privacy Policy. The Department’s Information Privacy Policy can be viewed at www2.delwp.vic.gov.au/privacy.

Use of your submission

The information you provide will be made available to the Strategic Bushfire Management Planning Teamsinvolved in the planning process, including representatives from FFMVic, CFA, Local Government and Parks Victoria.

This consultation is intended to give the community an opportunity to be involved in the strategic bushfire management planning process by providing information that informs the development of bushfire management strategies across Victoria. The consultation will be conducted in three phases:

  • Phase 1: Strategic planning objectives
  • Phase 2: Fire management strategies and actions
  • Phase 3: Feedback on final results of planning process

If you freely and voluntarily provide any sensitive information under the Act in your submission DELWP will consider that provision to be consent to collect the information and will then protect it under the Information Privacy Principles in the Act. Sensitive information is information relating to racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, membership of a political association or trade association/union, religious or philosophical beliefs or affiliations, sexual preference or criminal record.

You have the right to access and correct your personal information about you that is held by DELWP. Requests for access should be sent to the Manager Privacy, P.O. Box 500 East Melbourne 3002.

Results of Past Engagement

We have undertaken a number of engagement phases for our strategic bushfire management planning process. You can read an overall summary of what we heard and what we did with it the feedback from community and stakeholders in the phase 3 tab. See below for more information about each phase and to download detailed summary reports.

Phase 1

A summary of what we heard during phase one of our engagement, which sought feedback on regional objectives. You can also download or read the full Grampians Phase 1 Engagement Summary report from the Document Library.

This infographic outlines what we heard through the phase one Engage Victoria survey.

Grampians Phase 1 Engagement Summary Infographic

Phase 2

A summary of what we heard during phase two of our engagement, which sought feedback on strategy options. You can also download or read the full Grampians Engagement Report in our Document Library.

During June 2019, a supplementary engagement process was initiated, to test what we had heard from phase two and to add additional voices from localities and communities who were not as involved in previous phases.

The Grampians Phase 2 Additional Information Engagement Report provides a quantitative and qualitative summary of the community feedback received during both engagement approaches. You can download or read the full in our Document Library.

This infographic outlines what we heard through the phase two Engage Victoria survey.

This summary outlines what we heard through the phase two Engage Victoria survey.