Council warns of severe fire season

September 22, 2017

The Climate Council of Australia is warning that the 2017-18 bushfire season will be more severe and dangerous than past years as a result of climate change.

The council said the new Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC outlook was a smoke signal for yet another worrying bushfire season.

Despite the region encountering a reasonably wet September so far, the council highlighted a largely warm and dry winter that has set the scene for dangerous bushfire conditions over the coming months.

Climate council chairwoman Amanda McKenzie said the latest southern Australia bushfire outlook, released this month, showed an earlier and more active bushfire season should be expected.

‘‘Climate change is the driving force behind southern Australia’s worsening bushfire conditions,’’ she said.

‘‘As Australia’s pollution levels continue to rise, many parts of the country are poised to live through another dangerous bushfire season.

‘‘Climate change, driven by the burning of coal, oil and gas, is intensifying extreme weather events, and bushfires are no exception.

‘‘We must rapidly and deeply reduce our rising pollution levels and continue the retirement of all coal power stations in a bid to protect Australians from these worsening extreme weather events.’’

Ms McKenzie has urged the Federal Government to follow the actions of state and local authorities across the country by rolling out climate and energy policy to support the transition to Australia’s clean energy future.

‘‘The link between worsening extreme weather events and climate change is clear,’’ she said.

‘‘Australia must act now to slash its rising pollution levels through clean, affordable and secure renewable energy and storage technology.’’

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