Middle ground

The first ever burn I attended was down in the coastal heath at Bundjalung National Park. It was a small fuel-reduction burn on one side of the campground. The aim was to remove fuel so that if a fire came from that direction, it would slow down as it hit that area. We lit up […]

From fires to floods

Photo: Jodie Harris Dale: Pat and I grew up on farms in Canada. We came to Australia 47 years ago for a holiday and stayed because it doesn’t snow here. After working in Sydney and Melbourne for a couple of years, we decided we wanted to come back to the country. So we came up […]

In the wrong movie

Photo: Daniel Taylor Hans: When the fires came, we were told we had to evacuate.  Heidi: The police came and said we had to go. Hans: So we went and did two nights away and then came back and nothing had happened. Heidi: Finally, when the fire actually came, Hans said, ‘No, I want to […]

Saving the rainforest… again

Nan:  I call myself a rainforest botanist. But that hides a very long, checkered career of forest activism and other kinds of activism, and being a farmer and a parent. I’m someone who cares very deeply about nature, which is what motivates everything I do. I grew up in Melbourne with parents who were very much […]

The Community Defenders

JJ Bruce, Chris Anderson, John Hutchinson and Gwanji Monks prepare for action on the Nicholson property adjacent to the National Park, Mt Nardi fire. Photo: Terri Nicholson Operational log: Fire started Friday 8th November, grid reference 299413. Incident controller: Charlie Cohen. Channon Two stationed at the end of Wallace Road. Organised Erin, with Hugh and […]

Rainforest raised

Terri, Donovan, and Marco Teak. Photo: Terri Nicholson I grew up here at the end of the valley next to the rainforest. I was three years old when the protest to protect the Terania Creek rainforest happened. Being part of that instilled in me a sense of belonging with that forest and this valley. I […]

California dreamin’

I’ve been a fiery for over 40 years and a member of the Rural Fire Service, Nimbin since 1978. Until 15 years ago, the number of really terrible fire weather days – extreme or even catastrophic days – would have been about four. I’ve worked on fires all over the Northern Rivers and ‘94 was […]

The Long Range Striker Force

Ivy Young with her trusty McLeod tool. Photo: Ben Belle I grew up down the Bega Valley on a property. We didn’t have bushfires threaten our home growing up, but my grandparents lived in Sutherland Shire and Sydney, and there were times in the 90’s when bushfires came within a couple of blocks of them. […]

Farming flowers through fires and floods

The Luca O’Reilly family – clockwise from left, Tara, Alex, April and Olive (Younger sister Cedar was unwell on the day of the shoot). Photo: Ben Belle Very soon after my first daughter was conceived, we had a total change of life and moved out here to Korinderie Ridge where my husband Alex had grown […]

Do what’s right

After the fire had burned through, I went for a bushwalk with my dad to check up on everything. There was a bunch of RFS down there. I stepped on some ashy ground, and there was a burning root underneath, and my foot fell through the ground and the coals went into my boot. I […]