During the last week at least 40 bushfires have been reported around Tasmania. During this period Hobart experienced its hottest day ever recorded (42°C). A dry landscape and strong winds have exacerbated the fire danger.
Despite tireless efforts by fire fighters, community groups and many volunteers some 100 homes have been destroyed by the fires, as well as a school, businesses and communications and power infrastructure. Several thousand people have been evacuated, many by boat, from remote areas. There is significant loss of livestock and wildlife and fears are held for a number of people who remain unaccounted for.
The fires are estimated to have burnt out 80,000 hectares resulting in a damage bill amounting to hundreds of millions of dollars. CCAMLR, with its Secretariat in Hobart, Tasmania, has contributed $2,000 to a bushfire appeal which is being managed by the Red Cross.
Satellite image by NASA showing some of the bushfires in Tasmania.