Across Australia, bushfires are increasing in their occurrence, intensity, and damage. Even after the initial devastation however, the impacts of fire are ongoing, affecting a wide range of environmental, community, cultural and infrastructure values.

As such, to recover from fire requires a broad and coordinated approach and an effective recovery plan that focuses on multiple themes, including community wellbeing, indigenous needs, the environment, the economy and any lost or damaged infrastructure.

Shoalhaven City Council (SCC) and on behalf of Eurobodalla Shire Council (ESC) and Bega Valley Shire Council (BVSC) engaged Alluvium and CSIRO to prepare a catchment and waterways bushfire recovery across the Shoalhaven River catchment in the north to the Eden coast where NSW boarders with VIC, incorporating the Jervis Bay and Batemans Marine Parks.

Our work assessed the extent and severity of fire related impacts to coastal catchments and waterways; and to identify management actions for existing and ongoing priority threats required to be managed.

Key to this project was delivery of a risk assessment to determine how key threats influence environmental, cultural, social and economic catchment and waterway values; and the identification and evaluation of management options to be implemented over the life of the recovery plan for each fire affected catchment.

The work provided an improved scientific understanding of fire impacts to support ongoing catchment and waterway management decision making