A PLAN to expand traditional burning across central Victoria has taken a major step forward, with a business case before the government.
The Dja Dja Wurrung Aboriginal Clans Corporation is hoping for government funding in the next state budget, for their Djandak Wi - or country fire - plan.
It's significant not only for fire management, but for the living culture of the descendants of Victoria's First Peoples.
More cultural burning is something the group says will better place central Victoria to face a higher risk of fires into the future.
Dja Dja Wurrung Group chief executive Rodney Carter said the plan involved more fire, but on a smaller, more frequent basis.
Mr Carter said if funded it would allow the Dja Dja Wurrung to work more with cultural burns.
He said the aim was to create a patchwork of burn areas across the landscape, to break up the connectivity of fuels.
Mr Carter said he was excited to see the effect of the plan, part of the Dja Dja Wurrung's holistic approach to landscape management.
He said his vision for the project was to see it putting people back into country, and his mob leading.
Mr Carter said his approach wasn't the panacea to fire, but was part of the solution.
"It demystifies in a way what descendants of Victoria's First Peoples ... what our ancestors were doing," he said.
"It brings it more to life, if you think of that term living culture."
The Djandak Wi business plan involves traditional burns taking place at selected sites across an area of 47,000 acres.
Djandak Wi has been in the works for several years, with traditional burns first reintroduced to central Victoria in 2017. Since then the corporation has performed 21 cultural burns.
Mr Carter said the Djandak Wi articulated the Dja Dja Wurrung corporation's vision around fire.
It has been developed in partnership with the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning and Forest Fire Management Victoria.
Mr Carter said the corporation's burning work could be nimble, responsive to weather conditions.
He said, for instance, that workers on a separate Dja Dja Wurrung corporation project with fire skills, could quickly respond to a suitable window in the weather to do a quick, small burn.
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