Australia's alliance of former emergency services chiefs has warned Prime Minister Scott Morrison that a bushfires royal commission will fail unless it focuses on climate change.
The Emergency Leaders for Climate Action group has written to Mr Morrison noting that it sees "little value" in a federal inquiry but concedes one will likely go ahead.
Former Fire and Rescue NSW commissioner Greg Mullins says it is abundantly clear increased temperatures and extreme weather driven by climate change set the scene for NSW and Queensland's "worst fires" in history.
"Any royal commission that fails to feature climate change prominently in the terms of reference will fail at the first step," he says in the letter on behalf of the 31-strong group.
The cohort argues that the commission will also fail if it prioritises fuel reduction as a "silver bullet" because this season's blazes were weather-driven with a huge number ignited by lightning not arsonists.
"On days of severe fire danger and above, fires burned freely through areas that had been subjected to hazard reduction within the past two years, and even across mown lawns," Mr Mullins says.
The coalition says the commission should establish how climate change has affected the length of fire seasons and how it could change in the future.
By failing to focus on climate change, the commission would ignore the ethical and moral responsibility to future generations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and fire risks.
"I've been fighting fires for almost 50 years and this summer I've seen things I never imagined," Mr Mullins said.
"Normally, fast moving animals like kangaroos can escape but these fires have been so ferocious I saw them jumping from the bush burning."
He also suggests developments in high risk fire areas may need to be stopped as is already done with developments in some floodplains.
The letter says building large community facilities which can withstand fire to protect people should be considered as well as the establishment of national firefighting aircraft.
The role of the Australian Defence Force during national disasters should also be looked at.
Former Queensland Fire and Emergency Services commissioner Lee Johnson said experts warned a decade ago climate change would lead to the conditions seen this bushfire season.
"Australia is a major global player in the climate fight and the steps we take here have an impact in our own backyard and beyond," he said in a statement.
The prime minister has promised a swift national inquiry into the fires which have killed more than 30 people.
State premiers are weighing up the proposal for a royal commission, some having already announced their own inquiries.
Australian Associated Press