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Citizen Science for Bushfire Recovery

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National Coordination of Environmental Recovery

On Monday 13th January the Australian Government announced an initial $50 million investment in supporting the recovery of wildlife and habitats devastated in the current bushfire crisis.With $25 million assigned to an emergency intervention fund for immediate, critical wildlife and habitat survival interventions, a further $25 million has been made available to support wildlife rescue, zoos, Natural Resource Management Groups, Greening Australia and Conservation Volunteers Australia.Conservation Volunteers Australia were selected to coordinate the national environmental volunteering response to the bushfire crisis. From our experience in other disaster responses, we know that large numbers of people will contribute their time and skills to help with recovery over the many weeks, months and years ahead.The response requires an effort at a scale which hasn’t been experienced before. The sheer scale of the fires, the sensitive nature of many of the areas affected, and the numbers of wildlife that were displaced is enormous. We have been helping volunteers to contribute and direct their efforts to recovery actions that will help land, water and wildlife.Beyond the terrible human and community impacts, we know that the environmental damage is enormous. Billions of native animals have been lost, many species are under threat and massive areas of habitat have been impacted.This disaster will continue to affect Australia for many years to come.


About Bushfire Response & Recovery

We want to acknowledge the incredible work of Australia’s fire-fighting and emergency response services (and teams from overseas who joined the effort), which was and continues to be so reliant on volunteers. Those teams went above and beyond to save lives, homes, as well as protecting wildlife and important habitat where possible.Despite entering the next fire season, in many areas across the country the assessment of losses caused by the 2019/20 fires continues, and planning and early stages of recovery are underway.In Australia (and around the world), people still want to take action, yet struggle to know how to go about it. We have a proven track record of getting people involved in environmental restoration action and have the expertise, people and knowledge to support ecological communities that have been affected by the bushfires. We’re working closely with partners in affected regions to make sure people can be involved in this recovery.We will be providing thousands of volunteering opportunities for the significant work needed for the recovery. Fire grounds can continue to be dangerous long after the event – please check with local authorities before you enter any fire grounds.


Safety

Many fire grounds are still closed to the public as they are unsafe.

We are mindful of the significant impact on communities affected by the bushfires, and will make volunteering opportunities available in conjunction with local partners when the areas are safe to re-enter and local partners have the capacity to engage.

Our absolute priority is volunteer and staff safety.

Fire grounds can continue to be dangerous long after fires are out. Please note any local warnings and restrictions.


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