Returning to the hamlet of Bendalong on the NSW south coast last weekend, only one month after fire ripped through the region, was devastating. The 13km deathly quiet drive through the Conjola National Park from the Princes Highway was like driving through a climate change Armageddon.
Virtually everything is gone. The charred landscape is spiked with burnt matchstick trees and the once lush green undergrowth is nothing more than ash.
Local MP and senior NSW minister Andrew Constance has asked for no big P politics while the South Coast continues to battle devastating bushfires.
Ignoring his plea, the NSW government has just made a deal with Prime Minister Scott Morrison to make climate change worse.
The two governments plan to subsidise gas generation of electricity and open a huge new gas fracking field in Narrabri in north western NSW, while pretending this will bring down emissions.
350 Australia would like to congratulate the people of the Torres Strait Islands for securing a government commitment to provide $25 million for sea walls and other climate adaptation needs. This comes after years of advocacy, with the impacts of the climate crisis already being felt in the region, which is home to some of the most at-risk islands on Earth.
By Lucy Manne, 350 Australia CEO
As we look back at the last few months of unprecedented, devastating bushfires and drought, and look towards a hot, dry summer, it’s more important than ever that we build a politics of hope.
At 350 Australia, we have a new strategy for the new decade, and we are feeling resolute.
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.