Farmers and rural communities are warning Labor’s proposed changes to native vegetation laws will drastically increase bushfire risk.

While the changes are supposed to appease environmental groups that largely oppose farming, they have had disastrous consequences when put into law.

In Queensland, where the state Labor government enacted similar laws last year, farmers were fined for feeding drought-affected livestock, while additional fuel on the ground contributed to an unprecedented bushfire near Mackay.

Even though Labor talks about locking down land clearing in a vague effort to reduce carbon emissions, what happens in reality is that farmers are punished for feeding starving livestock and communities are put at risk from worsening bushfires.

One of the worst effects of the changes is that farmers are required to apply for approval to thin out trees on their properties, meaning they’re unable to manage their own land properly. This overstep from inner-city bureaucrats means people with no farming experience have ultimate say over what happens on the ground.

It’s yet another example of the Labor/Greens union treating rural people like children, and telling them that the government knows best.