The wild weather keeps coming, doesn’t it? We don’t have to wait to know how incredibly difficult sustaining life, livelihood and shelter will become if we exceed 1.5c degrees of warming.
All over the world, we are already experiencing the results of poor climate policy decisions. It has been a particularly stormy few months in eastern Australia, and it makes me wild. Like the wind. It does not pay to get too attached to your garden or the trees, for Canberra, the bush capital, is being rapidly re-modelled.
On our reccie yesterday, a neighbour told us that her daughter’s car had been hammered by hail and was a write-off. The car was only a year old and was a replacement for the previous one that was also written off due to hail damage. That neighbour lost a big eucalypt as did two of her neighbours. Three trees within fifty metres of one another. Only one of the three trees landed on a house. No one was injured. The neighbours didn’t like the trees anyway. Understandably. Still, a couple of those trees did provide shade from the hot westerly sun.
I guess we can expect insurance premiums to rise again. At this rate, insurance companies will go out of business because no-one will be able to afford the premiums, except the wealthy. It does tend to shrink your market.
How on earth the finance sector can finance and insure fossil fuel projects that emit carbon and directly cause an increase in extreme weather events, is beyond me. Perhaps the sector does not? It affects their bottom line, which means that governments must be stepping in with direct and indirect financial support. The Australian government seems to be quite proficient in this respect. So while property insurance becomes increasingly unaffordable for the average family, taxpayers are also subsidising carbon polluters to wreck our lives. Cue spiel about how resilient Australians are and play the national anthem.
Within a half kilometre radius of our house this afternoon, we saw at least six trees down, the majority of them Argyle Apple eucalyptus trees. While resilient to drought, the Argyle Apple seem prone to toppling over in high winds when the ground is soggy. The poor old brittle gum gets a bad rap. Despite its willingness to shed branches, the rest of the tree is a stayer. Unfortunately one branch did take out my precious blue devil babies. I also lost another treasured tree. My crepe myrtle that we planted to provide a shady, cooling micro climate in our backyard, and which was beginning to fulfill its role, snapped in half. That broke my heart, so yeah, I’m a bit cranky. Still full of adrenaline.
Regardless of who or what should take most blame for contributing to dangerous climate change, it is not as though we can admit to Aussie coal and gas substantially contributing to fires and droughts, or the retreat of glaciers relied upon for drinking water and growing crops in other countries. Oh wait ….
Yeah, definitely could have been worse, such as a Cat 5 cyclone on the Gold Coast or Cronulla. That would be the day (the federal government shelled out a lot of financial assistance).
So, anyway, in the aftermath of the storm, when we emerged from our houses, high on adrenaline, to mingle on the streets with neighbours we’ve barely met, none of us (including yours truly) were wearing masks. Today, our local Canberra government published the Covid figures for the territory. By my quick calculation, we have over a 25% positivity rate. [Note: Since then, the ACT Chief Health Officer has indicated the current positivity rate is 9 percent. Calculating a positivity rate based on one day’s data is obviously not as accurate as using trend data. Neverthess, the positivity rate is expected to increase.] I suppose it is possible that other countries might soon be banning Aussies from entry. The problem is there is no escaping each other or the poor decisions we make.
I think I might be over 2022 already. Still, I expect there will be good moments.
Dear readers, I have turned off comments on this post. It is too gloomy. In any case, you’ve heard me say the same things before. At least I’m consistent.