THE Palaszczuk government has rejected calls for a parliamentary inquiry into Queensland's devastating bushfires.
The Labor government used its numbers to crush an LNP attempt to establish an inquiry into last year’s disaster, which saw 1.4 million hectares of timber and grass country destroyed.
Government ministers chose to gloss over factors contributing to the devastation, instead focusing on how the ferocious fires had been fought over a 14-day period starting on November 22.
LNP leader, Deb Frecklington, said an inquiry was vital because mismanagement and bureaucracy worsened those fires.
“The impact these fires had on our communities, the environment and our farmers was significant,” Ms Frecklington said.
I share the concerns many Queenslanders hold about land management practices to control fuel loads, how our national parks are managed, and what landholders want to do to protect their property and livestock.
“I share the concerns many Queenslanders hold about land management practices to control fuel loads, how our national parks are managed, and what landholders want to do to protect their property and livestock."
Fire and Emergency Services Minister, Craig Crawford, told parliament that controlled burning had resulted in 68 per cent of high or very high hazard exposures being mitigated.
"The window of opportunity between the burn season when we do our fuel reduction and mitigation burns and the actual fire season is determined by the weather. It is always determined by the weather," Mr Crawford said. "The weather beat us. The window of opportunity closed and here we are today."
Affected landholder Tom Marland, Mount Wallaby, Gin Gin, was highly critical of the government's approach to fire management in high risk areas.
Mr Marland's family had repeatedly, but unsuccessfully, applied for permits to minimise fire risks leased forestry country. The 1600 hectares of forestry country was devastated, while the Marland's adjoining freehold country, which was subject to controlled burns in spring, was left untouched.
“We blame the apathy and poor policies of the state government in not allowing landholders to undertake practical measures to protect against bushfires,” Mr Marland said.
LNP opposition spokesman for fire, Lachlan Millar, said the parliamentary inquiry was about getting bushfire prevention and management right.
“Ineffective bushfire management in our national parks and a dramatic drop in the number of burns by Queensland Fire and Emergency Services are key concerns," Mr Millar said.
“Improving our preparedness and prevention activities will also save native vegetation from being destroyed and protect wildlife and livestock.”