New Zealand needs 'tree-free' borders around homes to protect from fire - Fire and Emergency

The Australian bushfires have razed more than 2000 homes to the ground, and there are concerns the same could happen in New Zealand.

Fire and Emergency officials are calling for "tree-free defensible borders" to be put around properties to make them safer.

Land management specialist Dennis Cooper says properties should ensure they are defendable against large-scale fires.

"There's a few issues obviously councils don't want people sharpening up chainsaws and chopping trees down, but we're pushing for 30 metres," he told Newshub. 

He says New Zealand is getting warmer, which could lead to more fires.

"New Zealand is definitely warming up; parts of New Zealand are drying out like Otago, Northland, Canterbury, Napier and Hastings. As for the Waitakere Ranges, we've got areas that are of concern."

He says Kiwis should learn from Australia's devastating fires. 

"If we continue the way we're going we will end up with bigger storms and bigger fires in New Zealand. We're definitely taking note what's happening in Australia that could happen here."

Australia's bushfires have been burning since September, destroying more than 10 million hectares of land and burning thousands of homes to the ground.