Australia’s climate is being influenced by La Niña event, but fire remains a concern in NSW and Victoria as grasslands dry out in the warmer weather.
The Australian Seasonal Bushfire Outlook: December 2020- February 2021 reports that above-normal fire conditions now exist in “large parts of NSW west of the Great Dividing Range face, as well as grassland areas of the ACT and into northeastern Victoria”.
“Western Australia has largely missed out on the rainfall in 2020 and conditions there are very dry, with parts of the south and southwest coasts expecting above-normal fire conditions through summer,” the outlook cautions.
“Fire is a regular occurrence across Australia, and it is important to remember that areas designated as normal fire potential will still see fires. Normal fire risk does not mean there is no risk.”
Overall, the landscape and weather conditions continue to be “vastly different” from the previous two years.
The Australian Seasonal Bushfire Outlook is produced quarterly to be used by fire authorities to make strategic decisions such as resource planning and prescribed fire management to reduce the negative impacts of bushfire.