The 2019–20 bushfires were unprecedented in their extent and intensity, with the fire ground in New South Wales covering 5.5 million hectares (7% of the State), including over 2.7 million hectares in national parks (38% of the NSW national park system).
Our scientists have been collecting information since the fires began. Though the fire events are over, the science of understanding what happened is still going. We will be doing post-fire assessments for many years to come to fully understand the effects of the 2019–20 fires. This will enable us to monitor recovery and renewal and ensure that decisions are informed by the best possible science.
Our data and information are shared across emergency response agencies, including NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS), and with environmental organisations to support conservation decisions and on-ground actions.
As more data comes through about the fire events, we update and refine bushfire related datasets to inform conservation actions being taken. These are published as part of our NSW Government response plan. The data sets are also published on our Sharing and Enabling Environmental Data Portal (SEED) ‘Bushfire related datasets’ page.
Below is an outline of the documents that we have published from most recent to when the fires first began:
- February 2021
- The NSW Wildlife and Conservation Bushfire Recovery: Medium-term response plan was published. The plan outlines actions that will be taken over the next five years to support the recovery of biodiversity in New South Wales following the 2019–20 fires. It includes updated data and assessments and is the most up-to date document about our response to the 2019–20 fires.
- November 2020
- The Air quality special statement spring-summer 2019–20 was published to provide a comprehensive analysis of the air quality during the 2019–20 fires.
- May 2020
- The Fire and the Environment 2019–20 Summary was published which included all available data from our scientists’ rapid assessments, an update to data included in the immediate response.
- January 2020
- The Wildlife and Conservation Bushfire Recovery: Immediate Response January 2020 was published, describing the NSW Government’s early response to the bushfires. It provided a snapshot of the extent and severity of fire damage across the State, based on immediate assessments.