Six sentences of hope: Defining a unifying vision in the face of the climate crisis | Richard Flanagan

A sense of futility haunts us all, so I sought to distill in as few words as possible what could be done by us as a people. Writing them, I felt my despair liftIn 1971, the Liberal Billy McMahon – routinely judged the worst Australian prime minister ever, an achievement not to be underestimated in a nation where the worst routinely rule – created a new portfolio: Environment, Arts and Aboriginal Affairs. Nobody wanted the job: given it, Peter Howson observed that he was responsible for “trees, boongs and poofters.”What’s changed with our conservative rulers over the last half century? On the evidence of the shame the prime minister, Scott Morrison, visited on all Australians last week at the Pacific Islands Forum, not very much. There he successfully pressured Pacific leaders to remove from the final forum communique and climate change statement all references to coal, to limiting warming to less than 1.5C, and to setting out a plan for net zero emissions by 2050. Continue reading...

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