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Topics: Sustainability
Could Fire Resistant and Fire Retardant trees be the solution forward for Australia to curb massive and destructive fires like we are experiencing?
I have come across what is called Fire Resistant trees, and Fire Retardant trees. I wonder if by planning the plantation of these trees, we could help decrease the effects of massive and destructive bush fires in Australia.
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Anytime we're planting trees, that is a good thing. I admittedly had never heard of fire resistant trees. I'd also suggest there are other areas of opportunity that need to be addressed.

That said, check out Ecosia. It's a search engine that plants trees - https://www.ecosia.org/
That is an interesting idea. It would be important to take a systems level view of this to reduce the risk of unintended consequences and worse secondary risks. We (humans) have been known historically to introduce a worse outcome by our short term solutions to certain problems...
Australia has a pretty isolated ecosystem. Koalas have such primitive brains that if you put eucalyptus leaves on a plate, they wouldn't know they are edible, so changing the vegetation would radically change the ecosystem. It's like introducing snakes to eat rodents, and realizing they also eat all the birds.
Dear Jean
Interesting your question
Thanks for sharing

It really is very bad to see the news about what is happening in Australia
I will even say distressing

I believe that before starting to plant Fire Resistant and Fire Retardant trees it will be important to carry out an environmental impact study.
Introduce more things to Australia.

I think the records are not good for humans introducing live things in Australia.
Even if the concept of fire-resistant trees is interesting I would not try it.
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1 reply by Suzi MS
Jan 17, 2020 1:21 PM
Suzi MS
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Indeed a brave comments made Vincent!
Hello Jean: I've never heard of fire resistant trees, but I appreciate the comments by my peers who are also quick to point out possible issues or risks such trees could create. I've been wondering since Australia is an island why we don't surround the island with boats and pump water from all sides. Too simplistic of an approach on too big of an island? Australia is about the size of the United States, so it would be nearly impossible to do, but I wish we could do it!!!! Makes my heart hurt for the tragedy surrounding the fires. We need to keep considering all types of solutions! Thank you for sharing yours!
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1 reply by Kiron Bondale
Jan 16, 2020 7:29 PM
Kiron Bondale
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Lori -

that is a unique idea, but even that presents challenges as the water being pumped in would be seawater and the excess salt might render arable land unusable.

The environment is a complex adaptive system which means that solutions to challenging problems will need to consider many downstream implications.

Kiron
Jan 16, 2020 5:49 PM
Replying to LORI WILSON
...
Hello Jean: I've never heard of fire resistant trees, but I appreciate the comments by my peers who are also quick to point out possible issues or risks such trees could create. I've been wondering since Australia is an island why we don't surround the island with boats and pump water from all sides. Too simplistic of an approach on too big of an island? Australia is about the size of the United States, so it would be nearly impossible to do, but I wish we could do it!!!! Makes my heart hurt for the tragedy surrounding the fires. We need to keep considering all types of solutions! Thank you for sharing yours!
Lori -

that is a unique idea, but even that presents challenges as the water being pumped in would be seawater and the excess salt might render arable land unusable.

The environment is a complex adaptive system which means that solutions to challenging problems will need to consider many downstream implications.

Kiron
I would like to reply with a few more questions:

What is the underlying cause of so many fires in comparison to other years?
Why aren't "traditional" prevention initiatives working anymore?
Can we apply here some measures that have been successfully implemented elsewhere with minimal impact/downstream implications?
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2 replies by Eric Simms and Jean Laval Chue Him
Jan 17, 2020 11:24 AM
Eric Simms
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I heard that 24 people were recently arrested for starting fires in Australia, but how much of the current fire damage is attributable to arson wasn't described, unfortunately.
Jan 19, 2020 2:57 AM
Jean Laval Chue Him
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Hi Joao there seems there are many different answers around about the whys, but it seems nobody can point exactly what are the unique causes.
Jan 17, 2020 2:24 AM
Replying to Joao Sarmento
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I would like to reply with a few more questions:

What is the underlying cause of so many fires in comparison to other years?
Why aren't "traditional" prevention initiatives working anymore?
Can we apply here some measures that have been successfully implemented elsewhere with minimal impact/downstream implications?
I heard that 24 people were recently arrested for starting fires in Australia, but how much of the current fire damage is attributable to arson wasn't described, unfortunately.
...
1 reply by Suzi MS
Jan 19, 2020 10:09 AM
Suzi MS
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Ditto Eric, heard that too-makes the whole thing looks really really horrible, from the PM declaring ‘why I should come back from holidays as I am not the one holding the hose’-although true in his own right but no one would ever think a wise PM would make that statement to the whole world... felt sorry for the nation! I have relatives there but have grown a distant but still hope they’re ok.
Jan 16, 2020 2:54 PM
Replying to Vincent Guerard
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Introduce more things to Australia.

I think the records are not good for humans introducing live things in Australia.
Even if the concept of fire-resistant trees is interesting I would not try it.
Indeed a brave comments made Vincent!
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