A $729,006 Australian Government investment in Charles Darwin University will ensure the operation of the North Australia and Rangelands Fire Information (NAFI) service for at least another year.
Land managers, Indigenous communities, cattle producers and those overseeing savanna fire management projects under the Emissions Reduction Fund access the NAFI’s fire tracking data service.
Federal Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management Minister David Littleproud said the service provides satellite-based fire mapping for all of north Australia and the Australian rangelands, with the exception of Western NSW.
“This is a proven, near real time fire tracking tool used extensively by many different land managers,” Mr Littleproud said.
“The cattle industry uses it to help protect livestock, fodder and infrastructure, saving it millions of dollars a year, and Traditional Owners use it to help manage Country.
“Data is everything when it comes to effective fire management and NAFI is the key provider of uniformly accurate fire histories across this vast area.
“This information is needed for planning, assessing, and reporting on fire management, and for measuring fire-based emissions.
“Agriculture will drive the nation’s COVID recovery, so it is critical the Australian Government helps ensure farmers continue to access cost-saving technologies like this.”
Federal Energy and Emissions Reduction Minister Angus Taylor said NAFI provides crucial information to help map the extent of savanna burning across Northern Australia, including for projects under the Emissions Reduction Fund.
“Savanna burning projects recognise and build on traditional knowledge and practices to reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” Minister Taylor said.
“NAFI is a valuable tool to help Australia measure and manage its carbon reductions from avoiding late season wildfires in the savanna region.
Federal Leichhardt MP Warren Entsch said the NAFI website recorded more than one million hits per month last fire season.
“The NAFI website is currently hosted by Charles Darwin University through the Darwin Centre for Bushfire Research,” Mr Entsch said.
“The NAFI service is another fantastic example of Top End innovation and we welcome the Government’s continued support of the people behind the website and the communities and industries it supports.
“Input into this important service is driven from rangelands land managers (including park rangers, pastoralists, Indigenous rangers).
“This investment also recognises the very hard work of the many stakeholders involved.”
The funding comprises $407,125 from the Building Landcare Community and Capacity (BLCC) of the Smart Farms Program and $321,881 from the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources.