Part 3 (I couldn't edit my placeholder) update - country is still burning and yet more f*ckery: Damage (8-24 Jan):
Deaths: 32 people
Homes: around 2000
Total area burned: est 7.7m - 8.4m hectares (4.9m hectares still burning in NSW alone)
Economic damage: $4.4bn
Sources: How big are the fires burning in Australia? Interactive map
Eligibility criteria: 10 days or more volunteering as a Rural Fire Brigade member fighting fire
Compensation: $300 per day up to a maximum of $6,000
The reality in Queensland
• Volunteer becomes eligible to claim for days on the fire line after fighting fires for 10 days - cannot claim for first 10 days, can only claim for days after the first 10
• Can only claim for those hours fighting the fires within normal working hours e.g. if a firefighter fought fire for 18 hours on one day and only 4 of the 18 hours were within the volunteer’s normal working day, then can only claim for those 4 hours
• If a firefighter made up the hours away from work by working at night or on the weekend, or received payment from their employer, then cannot claim those hours
• Must prove loss of income
• Volunteer can only claim a daily rate commensurate with their normal daily wage, after tax, up to a maximum of $300
• If a volunteer works part time and they fought a fire on days that they do not normally work, then they cannot claim for those days
• If a volunteer is retired, then they cannot claim any days
• If a volunteer is a primary producer then they must be able to prove that if they had stayed home on the days they fought the fire, they would have made money
Firefighters from the US flew to Australia to help fight the fires. Unfortunately, three died when their plane crashed during an operation 😢
The men, all former service members in their 40s, worked for Coulson Aviation, a private company in Canada that has worked with firefighters in the United States and elsewhere to suppress fires. They died after taking off on one of the company’s large air tankers, a Lockheed C-130, on a mission to suppress the bush fires that have killed more than 30 people.
The prime minister, Scott Morrison, has rejected suggestions Australia could increase its international advocacy on climate change, saying the country is already “carrying its load” and must adapt to a warmer climate regardless of emissions policy […]Department of Environment data suggests national emissions will be 16% below 2005 levels by 2030, well short of the minimum 26% goal. The government is using carryover credits from the Kyoto protocol to make up the difference.
Jumping back to December 2019: Australia rated the worst performers on climate change policy
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.