News from the CRC


Burnt dunes near Lake Quallilup, WA. Photo: Paul Hesse
Burnt dunes near Lake Quallilup, WA. Photo: Paul Hesse
Release date
14 Mar 2016
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Lyndsey Wright
Former Contract Research and Education Manager

First grant to capture data

The Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC has issued the first grant to help researchers gather important data from disaster-affected regions, following the establishment of the Quick Response Fund in late 2015.

Macquarie University’s Dr Paul Hesse lead a small team who recently travelled to Esperance in Western Australia to determine whether the bushfire that impacted the area in November 2015 will lead to destabilisation of coastal sand dunes.

Dr Hesse explained that the field work focused on the relationship between bushfires, coastal vegetation and sand dunes.

“We wish to understand if bushfires have the capacity to result in re-activation of coastal sand dunes. It is well known that disturbance to stabilising vegetation is one of the key causes of dune re-activation, which has the potential to threaten roads, towns and agricultural land,” he said.

The results will be reported to the CRC and will form part of a Masters thesis for Macquarie University’s Sam Shumack.

The Quick Response Fund is available to assist research teams travel to areas affected by natural disasters such as bushfire, flood, cyclone, severe storm, earthquake or tsunami to gather an immediate understanding of the event and capture perishable data. Funding is available for up to $2,500 (including GST), per team, per event, and is principally designed to reimburse travel-related expenses such as airfares, car rental and accommodation.

Applicants do not need to be current CRC researchers to be eligible. PhD students are also eligible to apply where an understanding of the event directly relates to their PhD studies.

You can find more information on the Quick Response Fund at the opportunities section of our website.

This initiative has been inspired by the Natural Hazards Centre in Boulder, USA, who run a similar scheme.

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