Extreme fire days on the rise in Australia

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Sydney, Sep 26 (UNI) The number of extreme fire days may double across Australia by 2020, according to a new report examining the effect of climate change on bushfires.

According to the report, Melbourne may experience days of catastrophic fire weather every two to five years by 2050 and total annual fire weather in Victoria could rise by up to 31 per cent in the same period.

Fire weather is the state of the weather with respect to its effect upon the kindling and spreading of forest fires.

There is a general trend towards intense fire weather in Victoria over the past 30 years, including the severe bushfires of the last summer.

The report, prepared by Bushfire Co-operative Research Centre, the Bureau of Meteorology and CSIRO for the Climate Institute, studied potential bushfire outcomes across Australia based on levels of global warming, the Age reported.

Climate Institute chief executive John Connor said, ''Fire weather was set to spiral dangerously upward unless rising greenhouse pollution levels were curbed.'' He also said the findings suggested more resources were needed to help firefighting agencies deal with frequent and intense fire seasons.

UNI

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