Keith Duncan, Pimlico
In the dying days of 2019 we thought that the way that year had transpired we were glad to see the end of it. Climate change was taking hold, unleashing the worst drought on record with thousands of battling farmers driven to the point of total desperation with many even pushed to end their life.
The Murray/Darling river system was in total collapse, with devastating environmental and community consequences, with both Federal and NSW coalition governments struggling to explain continuing claims of large-scale water theft and endemic rorting of taxpayer funded water buy-back initiatives.
Again, due to the effects of ever-increasing climate change, the bushfire season started some two months earlier and further deteriorating weather conditions soon gave way to the most catastrophic bushfires Australians have ever experienced.
2019 became 2020, the bushfires continued unabated – more suffering, death and loss of property. Finally the heavens opened, the bushfires were extinguished, and the Murray/Darling catchment received the best rain in a decade, and the environment began recovering.
Again we thought, ‘we’re glad to see the end of those disasters, better days must be ahead’. Sadly, events in China soon put paid to that theory. Now people around the world are dying in their thousands, because of a virus we can’t yet cure or vaccinate against.
This unprecedented string of disasters provides a reality check on our greed-driven lifestyle – our existence is not bullet-proof. We all must heed the warnings from experts and stop playing Russian roulette with the health of this planet.