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Planning for Bushfire Prone Areas

Learn the critical essentials for designing, planning and building in bushfire prone areas with the experts at UTS.

About this course

Severe and ongoing bushfires in Australia have highlighted the importance of planned and controlled development in bushfire prone areas. To maximise safety, the NSW Government has amended legislation and published new guidelines, Planning for Bushfire Protection. This course is designed to provide planning and development professionals, particularly those working in the local government arena, with the necessary skills and understanding to apply the relevant requirements of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979, Rural Fires Act 1997 and AS 3333959 (Buildings in Bushfire Prone Areas).

Course structure

This course covers legislation, planning and design principles, as well as aspects of bushfire behaviour and management, in detail.

Learn about statutory requirements and protection measures, as well as analysing and problem-solving in relation to bushfire protection measures and acceptable solutions. Sessions are designed to build knowledge, provoke discussions and encourage critical thinking.

The course has four intensive workshop days on campus, and one practical field trip. From lectures, through to face-to-face classes and the excursion, you will experience interactive presentations, case studies, scenarios and facilitated workshops.

Topics covered during the course include:

  • Bushfire behaviour
  • A multi-faceted approach to bushfire protection
  • Provisions of the Environment and Planning and Assessment Act and Rural Fires Act
  • 'Planning for Bushfire Protection' manual
  • Biodiversity considerations
  • Undertaking bushfire assessments: Application of Seniors Living SEPP
  • Using covenants
  • Legal issues and cases
  • Requirements of AS 3959 (Buildings in Bushfire Prone Areas)
  • Designing safe and attractive buildings in bushfire prone areas
  • The need for effective policy implementation, and local government management frameworks. 


Learning outcomes

  • Understand bushfire behaviour and approaches to protection of property and human life
  • Demonstrate a working knowledge of the legislative frameworks and contexts
  • Apply an understanding of the current status of planning for bushfire-prone areas in NSW
  • Identify and assess issues in bushfire protection and regulation
  • Conduct bushfire assessments
  • Consider issues related to biodiversity
  • Identify key elements in case studies and best practice.


COVID-19 Information

UTS is undertaking a number of social distancing initiatives, as informed by NSW Health advice, to help reduce social interactions in support of the government’s efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19. As part of this response, some of our short courses may be postponed to a later date.

Please note however, bookings are open for all courses offered by the Institute for Public Policy and Governance (IPPG). If a course needs to be postponed, participants will have the chance to transfer to a later date, a new course or request a full refund. IPPG will also be offering a range of online or blended learning options facilitated via zoom video conferencing. If you have any questions in the interim, please do not hesitate to contact our team at

Who is this course for?

Planning and development professionals, particularly those in local government, requiring the necessary skills and understanding to apply the relevant requirements of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979, Rural Fires Act 1997 and AS 3333959 (Buildings in Bushfire Prone Areas).



16 November




5 days

Book a session

Mon 16 Nov 2020 -
Fri 20 Nov 2020
  • UTS City Campus
  • On-campus
  • 5 sessions, 40 hours total
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