No 511 – The Wild Fires In Australia

The bushfires in Australia are now reaching biblical proportions and even though the news media has already moved on to the Corona Virus, the fires are still increasing. Lives are still being lost, homes reduced to dust as the environmental bill becomes incalculable.

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Today’s news (28/1/20) is that southern Canberra is under attack after the spotlight from a rescue helicopter accidentally started a fire in the Tharwa region just outside of the city.

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I reached out to Tim Savage a fellow podcaster from the Australian Hiker Podcast for a balanced report on the current situation, the short to medium term impact and an overall look at the environmental damage to nature and the economy the fires and weather in general are having this year.

This podcast includes various sound bites from different social media channels with people who are caught up in this, plus a news report where the Prime Minister was heckled during a fact finding trip to one of the effected towns.

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Excerpt from The Guardian Australia report by Audette Exel – Read the full article here

People are magnificentThey rescue our wildlife, defend our homes and towns, stare down fires against insuperable odds. And then they give money, often that they don’t have – to firefighters, aid agencies, the bereaved, the homeless, and animal hospitals.

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So much giving and yet, despite it all, I can’t quieten the alarm bells in my head. Will these good intentions have good outcomes? Do we know what we are doing, as we rush to help? Can we ensure this kindness, this magnificent largesse, will truly make a difference?

The bushfires are a historic catastrophe of global proportions. We all know the horrifying statistics: the tragic loss of at least 33 lives, 7.7m hectares burnt, more than 1 billion animals lost, over 2,000 homes destroyed, the shocking loss – the koalas, forests of eucalypts, wallabies, kangaroos, cockatoos, bee colonies and so much more.

There is a deep body of knowledge internationally on how to best manage a national emergency, to ensure that resources are allocated based on need, fairly, effectively and accountably

News articles of interest

Fake News BBC – Is Arson To Blame?

Guardian Australia – Canberra Under Fire Threat

Various approved organisations offering support

  • Australia’s Red Cross Disaster relief and recovery fund help support evacuation centres and recovery programmes for the affected communities.
  • Local fire services, like the NSW Rural Fire Service and Queensland Fire Service, are accepting donations directly.
  • The Salvation Army Australia also have a disaster appeal – who deliver crucial support to local communities as the fires rip through the country.
  • Find a Bed has been set up for families who have lost their homes. It connects people with Australians and landlords from abroad with property in affected areas.
  •  The Intrepid Foundation is matching donations up to £105,000, with all funds raised going to the Red Cross Bushfire Emergency Appeal.
  •  Celeste Barber who soared to fame with her hilarious comparison pictures on Instagram is raising money on Facebook for the NSW Rural Fire Service. She has raised a staggering £20 million so far.
  •  WIRES Wildlife Rescue need more volunteers to help save the animals. The charity is already asking Aussies to help make pouches for small marsupials.
  •  Wildlife Victoria’s bushfire appeal is disturbing donations to wildlife shelters.
  •  Victorian Farmers Federation was set up to help farmers whose land has been destroyed in the fire.
  • Givit is a charity that collects items and gives them to those in need.
  • The CVS Foundation of volunteer firefighters is a team of volunteers who have been working non-stop, putting their lives at risk to help save people, animals and homes.

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