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Support bushfire relief fund and demand real action on climate change

MEDIA RELEASE, February 18, 2009

Activists from the Socialist Alliance & Resistance have been in the streets this week helping to raise funds for Victoria’s bushfire victims. At the same time they are campaigning for urgent action to curb climate change to help avoid such catastrophic events in the future.


Chris Williams, convener of Socialist Alliance in Wollongong said: ‘It’s clear these devastating bushfires are linked to changing climate. By bringing more frequent and extreme hot weather events, and increasing the likelihood of droughts, climate warming now promises to make really severe bushfires much more frequent.


‘The raging inferno in Victoria came after more than a week of record or near record temperatures across much of South Eastern Australia. On February 7, the town of Hopetoun recorded Victoria’s highest ever temperature of 48.8 degrees Celsius. Melbourne set a new record of 46.4 on the same day. Prior to February 7, Melbourne had 35 days without rain, the second-longest period ever recorded. No wonder the fires were so ferocious.


This week’s fundraising column of Green Left Weekly – the newspaper produced and distributed by members of both organisations – is devoted to assisting the Victorian Bushfire Appeal run by the Red Cross.


‘Solidarity is needed right now so please donate to the Bushfire Appeal. But political change is needed too so please join the campaign for real action on climate. The bushfires have proven that climate change is not only a threat to our future but a threat right now. Let’s act now to preserve our environment and save lives and our communities’, Williams concluded
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[To donate to the Victorian Bushfire Appeal call 1800 811 700 or visit http://redcross.org.au/default.asp]

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