Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison on November 21 denied that his climate policies had caused unprecedented bushfires and insisted that his government was doing enough to tackle global warming. Dozens of new blazes have been raging the countryside and even Sydney was covered in hazardous smoke. PM Morrison said that despite the air quality, the Australian government is 'doing their bit' after refusing for weeks to register the link between wildfires in the county and climate change.
The thick smog which covered Sydney on November 21 raised concerns of the people while the fire services department said that the smoke is expected to continue for several days. The recent wildfires have destroyed more than 600 homes in the country's most populous state. Even though the annual Australian fire season normally peaks during the Southern Hemisphere summer, this year they had started early after an unexpectedly warm and dry winter. Advisories have been issued for people with respiratory or heart conditions to stay indoors and seek medical advice when necessary.
Victoria Emergency Management Commissioner Andrew Crisp warned Victorians to be vigilant. “Given fires could start and move quickly, you won’t always receive a warning or be told what to do if a fire starts,” he said.
The fires have been sparked by dry conditions after the drought that prevailed for three years and the experts believe that it has been intensified by climate change. It is a major factor that has spurred a sharp political debate in recent days. The firefighters expect that the fire bushes will continue for weeks without significant rainfall. Australia's Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) said there is just a 25 per cent chance that the country's eastern coast will receive average rainfall between December 1 and February 28. BOM also expects that chances are more than 80 per cent that average temperatures will increase in the next three months.