The Inspector-General for Emergency Management recommends that the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (or the single entity referenced in Recommendation 4) – with support from all legislated fuel management organisations for public and private land – lead a community engagement process to improve the Victorian community's understanding of:
a) the purpose of Victoria's fuel management program and the concept of residual risk
b) the conditions under which fuel management effectiveness is limited
c) how fuel management is planned, conducted, evaluated and reported.
By June 2021, DELWP will update and simplify:
• information provided about Victoria’s fuel management program,
• the concept of residual risk and how fuel management effectiveness is evaluated, and
• what bushfire risk means at state, regional and community levels.
In 2021 DELWP commissioned a confidential report 'Building a better understanding of bushfire risk' to summarise the public consultation and market research it had undertaken in 2021.
The report considered community attitudes on topics including:
• perception of risk
• interest in bushfire risk information
• risk reduction activities
• risk reduction targets.
DELWP used the findings of the report to inform its 2021–22 bushfire season communication materials and to help guide the development of related FSIP1 Actions 5.3 and 5.4.
DELWP provided IGEM with a copy of the confidential report along with examples of communication materials that provide simplified information about Victoria’s fuel management program, the concept of residual risk and how fuel management effectiveness is evaluated, and what bushfire risk means at a state, regional and community level.