Non-native species and exotic animal disease outbreaks can have serious environmental and economic impacts. Exotic animal disease will usually require specific control measures depending on the nature of transmission. National response and guidance to an exotic animal disease outbreak will be led by an appropriate governmental department with special procedures adopted during outbreaks.
When non-native species are transferred they can transform ecosystems and threaten native species by outcompeting native species, degrading habitats and spreading disease. This is usually because of a lack of predators of the invasive species and can cause long lasting environmental harm such as profuse plant growth affecting oxygen levels in a body of water.
Whenever fire and rescue services work there is a risk that cross-contamination can occur that damages biosecurity, unintentionally introducing species to new areas or transferring disease that can harm the environment.
Fire and rescue services can affect biosecurity by using water from one open water source and allowing it to run off into another or transferring materials on vehicles or PPE from one incident site to another.