Bushfires – ecological catastrophe

Gospers Mt, @nampix

The bushfire crisis has burnt 8.4 million hectares – so far. The cost in lives lost, homes and livelihoods destroyed is immense. It is equally an ecological catastrophe. The number of individual birds, mammals and reptiles affected is in the millions; the number of flora and fauna species pushed closer to extinction, if not over the edge, can’t even be counted until the fires stop.

These bushfires change everything. They underline the imperative to get out of fossil fuels within the decade. They expose the fundamental weakness of the EPBC Act which has no provision to respond to ecological crises. They require radical change to the scope and approach of the EPBC review to meet the new circumstances as far as is possible. They require native forest logging under already-failed RFAs to end.