AUSTRALIA FIRES : Can it happen in INDIA … ?????

All of us can see what is the painful and dreadful situation going in Australia with the forest fires . This is quite an unconventional topic which I have picked this time but it is relevant . See ‘Fire in Forest’ is not a new thing in Australia . Actually there is a FIRE SEASON only in Australia during Jan-Feb and it’s a part of the ecosystem . So even after fires being on , fire-fighters don’t try to calm it down instead they let it burn in a CONTROLLED manner . Sometimes even fire is intentionally put on to maintain the ecological balance required .

But this year what has happened is completely out of box and the reason is not the Fire fighters but instead Climate Change and Heatwave . On one hand when the whole world experienced a rise of 0.8°C , Australia experienced more than 1.4°C in average temperature taking it to 41.9°C . Along with it brisk winds (60 miles/ hour) fanned the flames and the trees and greenery actually proved out as the perfect tinder of flames . Rainfall being 40% lower than usual also proved instrumental in this . Even the Indian Ocean dipole was positive , i.e. , it took moisture off Australia and delivered less rainfall (happens with rising temperature) .

An interesting fact here is that , this situation was predicted in 2008 only where it was predicted in a scientific report by GUARDIAN that Australia’s fire season will start early and end late making the season longer and more intense . It also said that Australia will be affected harder than the rest by climate change and the affect will be visible by 2020 . 2019 was the hottest as well as the driest season of Australia in history . Scientists say that if the average temperate rise reaches 3°C , such fire seasons will be seen every season in Australia .

You all will be surprised that around 1 billion animals and birds have died due to this fire . KOALA is a very special animal in Australia but after this season they have been so highly massacred that it can now comes under ENDANGERED category . Other than that, the biodiversity of AUS which is one of it’s kind in the whole world has also been adversely affected . Some animals which somehow survived the fires had nothing to eat so food was dropped from air . Not only this, when water became scarce in forests and Camels were drinking too much water , you know what around 100 camels were SHOT DOWN by helicopters just to maintain the availability of water . The smell of those animals who died was also travelling in Air and those who survived couldn’t be released back soon as many of their Habitats have been destroyed . What made me write this Article was the condition of Animals over there only … so Sad .

Around 18 million hectare land has been burned down in this (around whole of RAJASTHAN) and the economic costs is estimated at around 4.4 Billion . At least 28 people died and over 3000 homes were destroyed Not only this the massive amount of pollution and smoke created due to all this , travelled the whole world before coming back again to AUS . It has extremely adverse affects , a sample of which can be seen by glaciers in NZ turning Yellow . And if anyone thinks how and when will this Fire end , it’s not gonna end soon as it is only halfway through Australia’s fire season .

What else grabbed the headlines was that the AUS PM SCOTT MORRISON went for a family vacation in Hawaii after the fire started . Though he later apologised for it but for no good . He was brutally criticised and abused on social media and even in public after his return . Condition was so tense that people refused to even shake hands with him , this attitude is perfectly understandable when the PM leaves his country burning for enjoying vacation . Not only this despite scientists citing a direct link between and Climate Change a many times , the AUS PM constantly denies it and is dying to promote coal and thermal energy .

Once he brought a piece of coal in parliament and shouted – “This is coal , don’t be scared , it is dug by men and women in the electorates of those who sit opposite . It has ensured for over 100 years , that our industries prosper , people get job and our industries flourish in world market . Those who are scared of it are COAL-PHOBIC . Now let’s have a look over facts ; AUS is the largest coal exporter and second largest coal emitter per capita . The contribution of Australia in this climate change is enormous and despite this it’s government is taking no actions and instead approving projects like ADANI Coal Mines that too on the Great Barrier Reef which has so much ecological insignificance . Huge protests were seen against this idea because even public knows what can be the consequences .

It’s not just about Australia , we can take the example of Brazil as well where months back one of the most horrible fires took place (40,000 fires incinerating at a time) BOLSONARO the Brazilian President right from the time coming in power in 2019 an 85% increase in deforestation of Amazon Forests which are world’s largest rainforest and also referred as LUNGS OF EARTH as it produces 20% of world’s Oxygen , holds 10% of world’s species (430 million) , 40% of tropical forests and 20% of freshwater supply , both of world . The prime reason was his moves of expanding mining and large-scale farming , he even opened up the indigenous land of people for agriculture . It is proving and leading to climate change . It’s effect is also been seen in nearby Brazilian cities and the South America continent .

Though the time when deforestation took place in Brazil , it was the season of forest fire there as well , but it was way more intense that too when deforestation there is record low . A major reason of all this has been burning of the lands by the farmers . They wait for the dry season to start to burn the crops to clear area for their cattle to graze . This was also linked to the fact that Brazil is the world’s largest Beef exporter and they were concentrating on maintaining that status . As for grazing purposes huge areas of land was deforested . 12% of earlier amazon forestland (93 million acre) are now farmland … now could you believe this . This deforestation disease is one of the prime factors .

BOLSONARO was giving lame explanation that non-profit organisations have intentionally lit these fires as he has cut their spending . One more significant thing to notice here is that BOLSONARO came to power promising to explore whole potential of Amazon Forests but instead , he is encouraging the exploitation and burning of rainforests by farmers and ranchers like never before in ‘Slash and Burn’ methods which can be called as MAN MADE DEFORESTATION .

It was said that these fires had a significant role in Climate Change as it released carbon dioxide well in excess , carbon monoxide , nitrogen oxide , non-methane organic compounds , other particulate matter and toxic pollutants , . In short term it led to rapid increase in Heat but in long term it is expected to reduce the amount of Carbon . The magnitude of damage can be understood that SAO PAOLO , the largest Brazil city plunged into darkness . And , since I have been talking about BOLSONARO , he once said to a woman “I will never Rape You because you are not worth it” . Such a person is our chief guest for Republic Day .

Even US being such a strong super power has absolutely no seriousness regarding this issue . On one hand it was led by DONALD TRUMP came out of the PARIS AGREEMENT of Climate Change and on other hand it rolled back many regulations against polluting industries and promoted such polluting and coal industries . These leaders over the world are less informant and just for some monetary benefits allow such projects to take place which are harming the environment in one way or the other .

And if we think that we will be safe in this world despite such things happening we are absolutely wrong . Any such thing will also affect our country and our environment as well . Oh … you think I am Joking , here are the Facts on demand . Just if we look at FOREST SURVEY OF INDIA (FSI) Reports , we see there is an almost 50% rise in no. of forest fires over last 3 years . Last year a severe one occurred in BANDIPUR where around 20000 hectares of forest land turned into Ashes . A fire (worst of a kind) also occurred in a National Park in Bangalore and affected many Flora and Fauna and also in Tiger Reserve in Bandipur (continuously for 5 days), now you can understand the gravity of the situation I guess . Another markable point is that most of the fires have been in Southern states only . But , still many cases , such as one in urban forests in Mumbai saw over 1100 forest fires destroying around 6500 hectares .

Though causing forest fires is illegal under the Indian Forest Act of 1927 and the Wildlife (Protection) Act of 1972 . But when reasons were searched of burning forests , they were Shifting Cultivation , Hunting , Poaching , clearing forest cover for non-timber products . So now , we can see the symptoms like Australia and Brazil here as well . Even World Bank has said that this much forest fires can create an additional sink of 2.5 to 3 million tonnes of CO2 and pose a serious threat to India’s target of expanding forest and tree cover .

Well … if we talk of Government’s part we come to know that on one hand state governments have inefficiently utilised the funds for the purpose while on other hand Centre is being blamed for releasing inefficient funds . Where we lose around 1176 crore a year due to forest fires the allocation for the purpose has been less than 50 crores that too not fully released on time . When there have been rise in no. of forest fires , there has been reduction of funds for protection from them . NATIONAL GREEN TRIBUNAL (NGT) has also been asking for long to Centre to draft a national policy .

What is required is Coordination with local communities and within centre , state and forest departments . Also one more suggestion is there that any forest fire of more than 20 should be regarded as DISASTER so it can be dealt by the Disaster Management squad . Currently because of not being under this category , despite many alerts it doesn’t get required attention and funds for many many days till conditions become worse . Rest is also the responsibility of us , before asking anyone else we should ask ourselves how many trees we planted and how many we stopped from being cut . Not just trees … anything causing excess pollution we need to take some care and control over it . I talked about HER then , I am talking about HER now … GRETA THUNBERG . Just clapping over her views is not enough we need to implement her ideas and many like her in our real lives as well . Even after these incidents if we don’t get Serious the day is not far that INDIA FIRES will be the word trending on social media .



Don’t miss my posts!

We don’t spam!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *