One day after the devastating bushfire at Binna Burra Lodge on Sunday 8 September 2019
Extract of article in The Guardian. By Ben Smee, published Monday 9 Sep 2019
Impacts of climate change.
‘Like nothing we’ve seen’: Queensland bushfires tear through rainforest’
Fires that swept though subtropical rainforest around the historic Binna Burra lodge are unprecedented, experts say.
Early on Sunday morning, a fire front climbed into the Lamington national park and razed Binna Burra, a historic eco-tourism lodge built in the 1930s and surrounded by subtropical Gondwana rainforest.
The heritage-listed main lodge was built in 1933. It has never before been seriously threatened by bushfire, protected in part by lush and damp surroundings that typically suppress the progress of dangerous fires.
“There have certainly been fires in the area before,” said the lodge chairman, Steve Noakes. “Back in the traditional owners’ time there’s evidence of fires, but certainly in the period of European history in this part of Australia, this is the most catastrophic.’
Noakes said the situation was “a signal to us that we need to take a more proactive approach to climate change”. We need to know more about the impact of climate change on subtropical rainforests of Australia and what that means in terms of long-term infrastructure. That’s why people come to Queensland, to experience these places.”
He said Binna Burra would be rebuilt in a way that took into account the likely impacts of climate change. “Binna Burra is 86 years old. When we position and design and build and operate tourism infrastructure in these sorts of natural environments, we have to think about 50 or 100 years ahead and what changes climate impacts are going to have on the built infrastructure.
“Our responsibility now is to have a vision that is crafted on the knowledge and the understanding of the climate as it will impact on the tropical and subtropical rainforest.”
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