At the height of the bushfire crisis there were social media claims the government plans to close the Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC. This wasn’t fair.
CRC’s are supposed to have ten-year lives but a bushfire centre has existed under two names since 2003, with latest funding long scheduled to expire in mid 2021, (CMM October 8). The point of CRCs is they are supposed to complete time-limited applied research rather than look for new things to in perpetuity.
Good policy, but in this case bad politics. Given the summer’s circumstances it would be politically insane for the government not to stump up more money and announce it now. Programme minister, (Industry, Science and Technology) Karen Andrews demonstrates confidence in the CRC. On Wednesday, she tasked it with convening, “a working group to examine technology advances that can assist fire response and management.”