Australia burning —  I wonder whether those thousands of people that are sheltering on isolated east coast beaches, overwhelmed by acrid smoke — in towns where supplies are running low and where some unprincipled grocers charge exorbitant amounts for a few basic supplies — are contemplating jumping on small, overcrowded boats and sailing across treacherous waters to New Zealand?  I wonder whether these prospective boat people — call them climate refugees, if you will — might beg the New Zealand government grant them asylum and a new beginning?  I wonder how New Zealanders might react to such requests?  I wonder ….

I wonder how far-fetched this actually sounds?

 

46 thoughts on “New Beginnings

      1. Yes.. the world over people seem to be fleeing tyranny. What the solution is I don’t know, but it definitely doesn’t include separating children from their parents and locking them in cages without proper care. Barbaric.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Not happening. Not yet. But entirely plausible. There is the problem of our smoke and ash potentially causing glacial melt in New Zealand triggering another climate catastrophe in a chain reaction. This is the stuff of scenario planning. I imagine someone is doing this work somewhere. I imagine this could test even the most tolerant of people.

      Liked by 2 people

  1. It is a plausible scenario that some Australians would seek to immigrate to New Zealand or other Commonwealth countries. Some provinces in Canada need workers. And if you want to go OTG, I know a guy. In most big Canadian cities a million dollars will buy a ‘shoe box’ but head out of the city one hundred and fifty miles or so and housing is more affordable but generally the cooler winter weather might not appeal. Many communities in the far north Arctic region are in the minus twenty degrees C today. In the Fraser Valley it is about six degrees C today. Summers can be hot and humid in places. We have had Syrian refugees restoring fallow apple orchards in in the province of Nova Scotia, or driving taxi in Dawson City in the Yukon territories. Most immigrants will recognize the economic opportunities that most Canadians do not. The Snow Geese are wintering over here from their summer ranges.

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    1. When I was a young lass, I had a semi serious offer to work in Toronto with some Australians. It would have been a good opportunity to try it out. But I had only just recovered from a serious illness and I was a bit timid. 6 degrees sounds manageable. Minus 20 sounds challenging.

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    1. There is a lot of south, Irene. My father is okay though. Terribly worried about friends, family and all the people in those towns and farms affected by the fires in south to state of Victoria and beyond. It is a national disaster with no end in sight. It is very dangerous, Conditions not as bad as yesterday, which would not be difficult because yesterday was horrendous.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you, Irene. It is horrible to watch. My father is making the trek back to Canberra tomorrow. There are out of control bushfires en route, so I will be relieved when he finally arrives back in town.

        How are you going? Is it very cold at the moment?

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  2. It goes on and on. And having recently spent a week in NZ, where it actually rained on a couple of days, the prospect is appealing. I thought about it when I was there…..

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      1. Apparently the north island is going to get drier, and the south island wetter. Greater risk of fire. My friend in Nelson was caught up in those bushfires.

        Maybe that 4mm is the start of something. Hope so. It was so dry when I went to Hill End as part of that big trip I took 18 months ago. That was the dead of winter. I think I would be too terrified to go any other time of year.

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  3. I’ve been thinking much the same Tracy. At the moment your compatriots wouldn’t have to ask for asylum — we allow you free entry. And unlike the Australian government’s treatment of a Kiwi residents in Aus, we don’t penalise trans-Tasman migrants in relation to benefits, etc. Not sure how long that policy would last if the numbers were high though.
    And of course, as you say, the chain reaction has begun and more people flooding here would certainly exacerbate that.
    I can’t help thinking that the best thing for everyone is if we all get busy fighting for change in our own backyards. I’m not holding my breath.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I realise what a particularly grumpy comment I’ve made, and how you have made such a good point about the Australian government’s treatment of asylum-seekers. I’d like to think we would show more kindness.
      That doesn’t change that fact that overall humans can’t keep trying to escape climate change by moving en mass somewhere else and expecting business as usual. Sigh; I really am grumpy today.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That is quite okay. I didn’t consider it grumpy at all. There is only so much any one country can do. We already know this from what is happening in other parts of the world. But now Australians can see for themselves what other people might be going though and why it is so important to take preventative action. I’m not holding my breath either. Already, Murdoch’s attack dogs are goiing for the jugular.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That’s so depressing.
        Our skies turned orange this afternoon. I think it’s a bit of a wake-up call for us. Though I did read that the police have had to ask people not to call 111 to report it. Gotta wonder how people can breathe with their heads so far in the sand.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. We’ve been asked only to report if we see a fire, but if you can’t go outside, it is hard to see a fire!!!
        Federal Parliament doesn’t sit again until Feb, so some of the members may not get to experience this particular kind of hell. A number will have been involved in fighting fires in their own electorates. That might focus their minds on the problem.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I’ve just read that Canberra is in virtual shutdown. Are you ok? I read this morning (need to fact-check) that it only takes 3.5% of a population to bring about change. I hope that’s true.

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      5. Was that the Amy Remeikis article in The Guardian that you read, Su? It’s true. Needless to say I am very fragile at the moment. I went out to pick up some medical supplies the other day from the pharmacy. It is attached to one of those huge drop-in medical clinics that have extended hours. It, and the pharmacy, was closed. It was astonishing. I went yesterday and got my stuff so I’m okay.

        Also I soon may have no friends because I am terrible at self-censorship.

        Liked by 2 people

      6. It was this article (https://www.newsroom.co.nz/@greenroom/2020/01/05/973836/forget-bushfire-donations-change-a-little) that led me to this https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20190513-it-only-takes-35-of-people-to-change-the-world).
        I’m glad you managed to get what you needed from the pharmacy; it’s scary when medical centres are closing.
        I know what you mean about friendships. I suspect I’m beginning to seem like a soapbox warrior (or maybe just a bore) to many.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Climate refugees are going to be a real thing, if they aren’t already. We may all one day be wanderers, trekking from inferno to sanctuary to unstable ground. I’m not Christian but I think of the story of the baby born in a manger, the safest, warmest place his parents could find.

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