keywords: Victorian Bushfires

  • ENVIRONMENT

    Climate justice includes secure public housing

    • Andrew Jackson
    • 21 February 2020
    6 Comments

    As the bushfires raged and air quality worsened, we were constantly told to stay indoors, keep cool and be alert for emergency orders on our phones. But with each public service announcement, we continued to leave some of our most vulnerable behind.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    This is not about the fires

    • Neve Mahoney
    • 22 January 2020
    11 Comments

    My dog I've had for 14 years dies, and I decide to spend two days in bed. I look online and see that more than a billion Australian animals have died in the fires. Guilt spirals on top of guilt. How gauche, to feel this private grief, when there is such public grief already.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    A royal commission for the land

    • Kate Galloway
    • 20 January 2020
    16 Comments

    For our society to function responsively to what is now a dynamically changing context, we urgently need differently oriented governance. This will, no doubt, be unpalatable for some — both in government and in the general public. But without re-setting how we are governed, our land and our society will suffer further destruction.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Can weather presenters be climate saviours?

    • Greg Foyster
    • 16 August 2019
    2 Comments

    The media often portrays climate change as a political issue. But politicians are the least trusted messengers for climate information. They really turn off the public. The most trusted are scientists, firefighters, farmers and weather presenters. Of these, only weather presenters have a large audience and are already skilled communicators.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Climate indifference is an Aussie tradition

    • Greg Foyster
    • 31 January 2019
    9 Comments

    One of Australia's foundational myths is of white settlers weathering nature's worst. It's actually in our national character — the story we tell about the nation — to dismiss climatic extremes like heatwaves. Maybe one missing part of taking climate change more seriously in Australia is a shift in culture to respect the heat.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    It's time to heatproof our cities

    • Greg Foyster
    • 10 February 2014
    23 Comments

    Climate change has loaded the dice towards hotter days and more frequent heat spells. Heatwaves are only going to get worse, and air conditioning isn't the godsend it seems. We need to start retrofitting our cities, suburbs and homes to withstand the sweltering summers to come. Any new houses that perform poorly in the heat are going to be a tremendous burden on the next generation.

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  • MEDIA

    Reality trumps Japanese horror stories

    • Stephen Alomes
    • 23 August 2011
    7 Comments

    All too often anxiety trumps reality. In Melbourne in recent years, we received emails from friends overseas worried that we might be affected by the Queensland floods or NSW bushfires, hundreds of kilometres away. Japan has problems, but Japan it is not a disaster zone.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Lessons about Australian identity from 'The King's Speech'

    • John Warhurst
    • 25 January 2011
    18 Comments

    Some advocates of monarchy have jumped on the film The King's Speech as evidence that Australia needs a monarch. Monarchists often argue like this when they want to personalise the constitutional debate by concentrating on a member of the Royal family with attractive features.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Bushfire blame misses the point

    • Paul Collins
    • 04 August 2010
    16 Comments

    Sadly the Commission played the blame game. This happens after every major fire and originates in the need to find scapegoats. Neither Christine Nixon nor the others who copped the blame could have known they were dealing with a whole new era of firestorm.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Bushfire commission's climate denial

    • Tony Kevin
    • 28 May 2010
    9 Comments

    The Black Saturday Royal Commission seems to be ignoring scientific evidence that climate change was a major causal factor. The possibility that Victoria's cool mountain ridges and valleys are drying out and that such ferocious fires are the way of the future might be a truth too much to bear.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Best of 2009: When Leonard Cohen prays

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 07 January 2010
    1 Comment

    The world of pop music is dominated by prettiness and skin-deep perfection. In that context, Cohen's greatness is not instantly discernable. Lately a Buddhist, he has spent his latter years in study of religion — 'But cheerfulness keeps breaking through.' February 2009

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Best of 2009: Fatal firestorm's distant witness

    • Bronwyn Lay
    • 05 January 2010

    A year ago, on the day of the National Apology, the emotion was palpable over the seas. But it was hard not being there, standing on the same dirt as your fellow countrymen. It is similarly difficult to be away from home during a time of natural disaster. February 2009

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