Australia changed early in 2020 due to a
succession of disasters, in the form of droughts and fires, soon to be followed
by the COVID-19 pandemic. Since then, fierce contenders for the word of the
year include unprecedented, new normal, pivoting and green shoots. As if these disasters
emerged from nowhere and the scientific and policy communities had to quickly invent
new strategies. On the contrary, the scale of climate change warnings has been matched
only by Australian political and commercial intransigence and denial: fuelled
by well-funded anti science movements. Our landscape, industry and way of life
are profoundly changing to overcome policy neglect about climate change denial.
Disaster researchers and organisations are responding by reframing the old view
of a sudden and short event as persistent, consistent. A strong evidence base
is informing our understanding of recovery pathways. Political science is
helping us to understand how climate change denial is organised and funded.
Meanwhile, young Australians are organising and imagining a more sustainable