staff discussing a planned burn on private land
Discussing a planned burn on private land

The State Government’s Burning on Private Lands Program is a collaboration between National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) and private landholders to strategically reduce fuel in high-risk areas across the state.

Reducing bushfire risk is an ongoing and shared responsibility and everyone has a role.

What is the reason for prescribed burns on private land?

Where an area of high bushfire risk is identified, fuel reduction techniques, including prescribed burns, are used to reduce the amount of fuel available for bushfires.

Reducing fuel is important as it can reduce the speed and intensity of bushfires which makes them easier to control, provides a safer environment for firefighters, and ultimately saves lives and property.

As fire doesn’t respect property boundaries, fuel reduction programs must also work beyond them. This is critical in areas where assets have been built in high fuel areas on private land, particularly in the urban fringes.

How are areas identified?

High bushfire risk locations are identified in bushfire management area plans developed by bushfire management committees across the state.

Where fuel reduction needs are identified, NPWS staff work with landholders in those strategic locations to determine if prescribed burning, using a skilled team of fire practitioners, is an appropriate option. This includes assessing the feasibility of undertaking a prescribed burn at the site, the willingness of the landholder to be involved and any environmental considerations.

What is expected from private landholders?

If your property is considered suitable, and you're happy to proceed, you'll need to sign a letter of consent to allow NPWS staff onto your property to undertake environmental assessments, prepare for and conduct the burn.

Preparation of the site and maintenance of the land following the burn will be negotiated on a case-by-case basis.

How you can be involved

Private landholders can receive assistance through the Burning on Private Land program in the following ways:

  • If your land is in a high-risk area, and is in a strategic location, you may be approached by NPWS to discuss options to reduce your bushfire risk to help protect the community. Priority is given to properties near populated areas.
  • If you own land that you think may pose a bushfire risk to the wider community and you are not able to manage the fuel yourself you can contact NPWS. They will let you know whether your property has been identified as a risk and discuss options to manage it.

Burning on private lands

Further information

  • Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges region contact NPWS Fire Management Officers Tim Groves, phone 0427 018 654; or Derek Snowball, phone 0417 010 358.
  • Kangaroo Island contact NPWS Fire Management Officer Paul Cory or phone 0447 726 664.