As we enter 2020, Australia has no national climate change policy. There are no mechanisms to reach our vastly inadequate commitments under the Paris Agreement1.
Meanwhile, our nation suffers through unprecedented drought and bushfires, and we face yet another brutally hot summer of heatwaves and coral bleaching2. Yet as public concern about the climate crisis reaches record levels, our Government’s refusal to act only becomes more entrenched.
For 350 Australia these bushfires are personal. All of us seem to know someone affected by these megafires – whether it’s folks being evacuated from their homes, those that have lost theirs, or some we are still waiting to find out about.
At this stage, 4 people have died. Our thoughts are with their families and friends and those communities devastated by these fires.
This week, world leaders are gathering for an emergency United Nations Climate Summit in New York City. Australia’s Prime Minister is in the United States at the same time, but infuriatingly, he can’t be bothered #ShowingUp to this critical summit.
This is unacceptable and doesn’t represent the fierce, overwhelming enthusiasm that Australians have for strong climate action, as we demonstrated on Friday with our biggest ever climate mobilisation – a massive 350,000 people in the streets in over 100 cities and towns.
By Glen Klatovsky, 350 Australia Campaigns Strategist
You may know that Australia has a national wealth fund – our ‘Future Fund’ – of over $200 billion that is invested globally for the benefit of future generations of Australians.
This collective wealth is designed to work for us. But currently, our Future Fund is caught up in the industries we have long known are putting our survival at stake – fossil fuel industries that extract and burn coal, oil, and gas and are rapidly pushing us to climate catastrophe.
By Lucy Manne, 350 Australia CEO
Never seen before.
That is how experts are describing the intensity and scale of bushfires we are witnessing in Queensland and New South Wales these first weeks of spring, which marks the worst start to Australia’s fire season in recorded history .
It is a shock to witness hundreds of Australians gathered in evacuation shelters, while crews battle over 100 fires just one week after the end of winter.