Fires in Australia occur every year, but unfortunately, this year has become catastrophic. The number of fires and their scale is growing not only in Australia, and according to Global Forest Watch Fires, today, there are more than 4.5 million fires on the planet that occupy at least one square kilometer. This is 400 thousand more than in 2018. Very many people died, many plants were destroyed, and this also applies to animals, their incalculable number died. Many settlements were left without electricity, smoke everywhere. The causes of fires are many, but many experts see the connection between fires and rising water temperatures in the oceans. The increase of water temperature in the oceans has a strong effect on land, due to which, periods of drought increase, and increase the number of natural disasters, a shift in the rainy season, which leads to draining of ecosystems—the wind strength in dry and hot countries increases and the risk of fires increases. The probability of large fires is high today, even in quite moderate latitudes. If talking about the area, the 2019 fires in Australia became the largest in the entire history of observations, and the second in terms of damage caused – after the fires of 2008-2009. Because of what the fires started, it is not yet exactly established, but definitely, it is the result of human activity. Australia’s contribution to global climate change can hardly be overestimated: it takes fifth place in the world in coal mining and the second place in its export. Burning coal, oil, and gas make a major contribution to climate change and forest fires too. Abnormal heat, dry, and very windy weather is the result of global climate change. Of course, the fire does not start on its own because it has become hotter. But under such conditions, fire spreads rapidly and can develop to catastrophic proportions.
One very important lesson must be learned from these tragic events, that the climate catastrophe does not have even more dire consequences, the authorities of Australia and other countries should as soon as possible stop burning fossil fuels – one of the main causes of anthropogenic climate change and also increase funding for services that deal with fires in natural areas.
“Blankets and analgesics. How people rescue animals affected by fire in Australia”, TSN.UA, 13 January 2019, www.tsn.ua/ru/svit/odeyala-i-obezbolivayuschee-kak-lyudi-spasayut-postradavshih-ot-pozharov-v-avstralii-zhivotnyh-1471119.html. Accessed 3 February 2020.
“Tierra del Fuego. How Australia’s Survivors Survive Climate Armageddon”, NV.UA,17 January 2019, www.nv.ua/world/countries/avstraliya-pozhary-vyzvany-izmeneniyami-klimata-schitayut-uchenye-poslednie-novosti-50064471.html. Accessed 5 February 2020.
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