QuestionsOnNotice

Questions on Notice No 6211
Answered
Assembly
59 Parliament First Session
Question
Asked: 6 October 2021

Question on Notice

Mr Bull (Gippsland East) to ask the Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change — The Minister’s response to Question on Notice No 6007 in relation to roadside vegetation and hazardous tree removal works at Sarsfield and Gelantipy in East Gippsland following the Black Summer fires states:

"The roadside works undertaken by the Department of Transport at Sarsfield and Gelantipy in 2020 remain the subject of assessment by the Office of the Conservation Regulator.

Until the outcome of this assessment is known, the Department of Transport has paused the works and has not yet commenced the process to obtain authorisation for the works to continue."

Can the Minister further advise:

(1) What is the timeframe for the completion of this assessment by the Office of the Conservation Regulator.

(2) Are delays in the assessment process preventing roadside vegetation works that are vital to the safety of communities in East Gippsland for the forthcoming summer fire season.

Answer
Answered: 9 December 2021

The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) and other land managers have a 365 day approach to reducing bushfire risk. As well as effective planned burning, DELWP also conducts extensive mechanical fuel management works such as clearing, mowing, mulching and slashing, creating and maintaining fuel breaks and carrying out fire infrastructure maintenance, such as fire dams and look out towers.

 

Forest Fire Management Victoria and contractor crews in East Gippsland are continually working to clear accumulated debris from roadsides and contractors have this year provided more than 5000m3 of firewood to the local community and residents are encouraged to collect roadside wood in designated firewood collection areas.

 

I am advised that the Conservation Regulator has completed their investigation at Gelantipy and resolved that no further regulatory action is required. The investigations at Sarsfield remain open.

 

The ongoing work of the Conservation Regulator has not impacted any works planned by Forest Fire Management Victoria in their preparation for the 2021-22 summer.

 

 

 

Hon Lily D’Ambrosio MP

Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change

Minister for Solar Homes

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