Logging "Amplified" Severity of Black Summer Bushfires


An analysis of the fire footprint of the 2019-2020 Black Summer bushfires has found logging elevated the risk of high-severity fires.

A team of Australian researchers, including Professor David Lindenmayer and Dr Chris Taylor from The Australian National University (ANU), completed the study. The Black Summer bushfires burned through more than 24 million hectares and destroyed thousands of homes.

Professor Lindenmayer said while weather conditions had the biggest influence on the severity of the fires, these effects were amplified by logging. According to Professor Lindenmayer, logged forests always burn at greater severity than intact forests.

"Logging increases the probability of canopy damage by five to 20 per cent and leads to long-term elevated risk of higher severity fire," he said.

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