Arson fires in Australia

Joseph Zorzin redoak at
Wed Jan 2 09:13:22 EST 2002

"Daniel B. Wheeler" wrote:

> From The Oregonian, Dec. 31, 2001, p A7
> Arsonists set more brush ablaze as fires rage near Sidney, Australia
> By EMMA TINKLER, The Associated Press
>         SYDNEY, Australia - Arsonists set more brush fires Sunday south of
> Australia's largest city, fueling a haze of gray smoke that diverted
> jets from the airport, obscured landmarks and triggered alarms in
> malls and buildings.
>         Lower-than-predicted temperatures helped firefighters contain
> hundreds of brush fires raging for a week across Australia's most
> populous state, but officials refused to say the crisis was over.
>         They warned that the fires could flare again because forests remain
> tinder dry and meteorologists still predict the return of dangerously
> hot weather.
>         For more than a week, about 100 fires - almost half of them
> deliberately lighted - have destroyed 150 homes and razed hundreds of
> thousands of acres of forest and farmland. No deaths have been
> reported, but more than 4,400 people have been evacuated.

Have people been caught? What's likely to happen to those getting caught?

Do Australian ecologists practice preventive burning of the brush?

Wasn't fire a natural occurrence for millennia until the Europeans showed up?

What are the ecological effects of burning there, other than torching homes?

Did the aborigines set fires for good reasons back in the good old days before
the whites showed up and stole their country?

> Posted as a courtesy by
> Daniel B. Wheeler

Joe Zorzin

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