Bushfire Smoke Chokes Sydney

P2 masks no longer cut the mustard. Now you need N95 masks to breathe in Macquarie Park because air pollution is extremely hazardous at over 11 times the safety threshold.

Even the Chasers are on fire! ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)

Welcome to Australia... where the animals and plant life try to kill you. Now even the air will kill you.

The Australian government's climate change policies have been ranked the worst among 57 countries according to the 2020 Climate Change Performance Index.

Australia is the worst-performing country on climate change policy, according to a new international ranking of 57 countries. The report also criticises the Morrison government for being a “regressive force” internationally.

The 2020 Climate Change Performance Index, prepared by a group of thinktanks comprising the NewClimate Institute, the Climate Action Network and Germanwatch, looks at national climate action across the categories of emissions, renewable energy, energy use and policy.

Across all four categories, Australia was ranked as the sixth-worst performing of the 57 countries assessed. On the assessment of national and international climate policy, Australia is singled out as the worst-performing, with the report saying the re-elected Morrison government “has continued to worsen performance at both national and international levels.”

“Experts note that the new government is an increasingly regressive force in negotiations and has been criticised for its lack of ambition by several Pacific Island nations in the context of this year’s Pacific Island Forum,” the report says. “The dismissal of recent IPCC reports, the government not attending the UN Climate Action Summit in September, and the withdrawal from funding the Green Climate Fund (GCF) underpin the overall very low performance in the climate policy category.”

Australia scored the lowest possible rating of 0.0, compared with the highest-scoring country, Portugal, which was ranked best for its climate policy at 97.8%. The report praised Portugal for its ambitious target of net-zero emissions by 2050 and a 55% emissions reduction by 2030. The report says that the Australian government has also failed to clarify how it will meet the country’s 2030 emission reduction target and has failed to develop a long-term mitigation strategy.

“While the government is not proposing any further targets for renewable energy beyond 2020, it continues to promote the expansion of fossil fuels and in April 2019 approved the opening of the highly controversial Adani coalmine,” the report notes. The Guardian, 11 Dec 2019.

The bad news is that bushfire smoke will continue to choke the city, and summer has only just started. Climate change is making droughts longer and the terrain drier. The bush is like a tinder box waiting for a spark. And the Liberal-National Coalition is in complete denial, including many Australian voters that put them in power.

It is fine. Let it all burn.

2019, journal