Australia is Burning. What’s Next?

The Race Against Climate Change

Do you believe in climate change?

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Millions of acres burnt to a crisp, twenty-four lives lost, and about a half a billion animals are dead. Australia is living proof that climate change is real and here to stay. Change needs to happen, and soon. There are many proposed solutions that can help fight climate change such as; forgoing fossil fuels, an infrastructure upgrade, consuming less, stopping the cutting down of trees, being more efficient, and even as far as only having one child. There are also everyday ways that allow you to personally help the fight against climate change such as using efficient light bulbs, removing the use of plastic from your everyday life, and maybe walking or biking the extra 10 minutes instead of driving. 

The Australian wildfires are just one instance where climate change has already affected us to great lengths.

“Climate change is increasing wildfire risk in Australia, by lengthening the fire season, decreasing precipitation, and increasing temperature.” 

— The Australian Bureau of Meteorology

Climate change may not be igniting the fires, but it allows them to turn into catastrophic blazes. The increasing temperatures, dry vegetation, and less water availability due to evaporation are all caused by one thing: climate change.

Some still argue that climate change isn’t real. For example, some may claim that climate change is part of a natural cycle. However, this is untrue, science proves it. It has been proven that human fingerprints on climate change rule out natural cycles.  According to GreenFacts, natural cycles are “ a natural process in which elements are continuously cycled in various forms between different compartments of the environment (e.g., air, water, soil, organisms)” Examples of the cycles could include the carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus cycles (nutrient cycles) and the water cycle. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fifth Assessment Report, “Human emissions and activities have caused around 100% of the warming observed since 1950.”

A headline on the website of a conservative columnist and radio show host, Todd Starnes, declared: “The Australia Bushfires Have Nothing to Do With Climate Change; It Was Arson.” This is yet another misguided claim. The post was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed but the claim still reached many. This claim is dramatically false. Yes, there have been people arrested for starting and being suspected of starting fires. However, the human set fires are not the only reason for the blazes. Australia has natural wildfires that start in the dry seasons of April to September. Due to the climate change already taking place, the increasing temperatures and less water availability caused by all of the evaporation, has turned the dry Australian brush into literal fuel for the fires. 

Climate change is not fake. Climate change is not a myth. Climate change has been proved to be real by scientists. Climate change is real and here to stay.