Be both alert and alarmed

Chris Young, Surrey Hills, VIC, Apr 19, 2024

Time to be both alert and alarmed. The Great Barrier Reef is facing its fourth mass bleaching. Deteriorating oceanic conditions presage further damage. Reefs globally are facing the same existential threat. Should they die, many species which depend on these reefs will follow; our environment will experience cascading extinctions.

While climate change denial may have reduced in recent years, its stable-mate – climate action procrastination – is thriving. Our government makes such gestures to control carbon emissions as it can negotiate with, among others, the fossil fuel industry. Government talks up its actions, but they remain insufficient for the need. In the meantime state governments crack down on environmental protesters, sheltering this debate from public gaze. Samantha Helps highlights the vivid contrast between the transformational action we need, and what government is actually doing.

This rapidly evolving existential crisis needs strong, decisive leadership. This is a major challenge for a democracy in this world shaped by media – both journalistic and social.

Anthony Albanese may be hoping that the meek will inherit the earth; they may, but the earth they inherit may no longer support life.

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