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Clutching at climate change straws

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22.11.2019

If there can be such a thing as a climate change sky then, horrified, I saw it on Monday as my Canberra-bound bus chugged away from Sydney and set out across a desiccated New South Wales. Everywhere vistas were blotted out by an apocalyptic smog, part bushfire smoke/part drought's flying dust.

Smoke from NSW bushfires blankets the Sydney CBD. Picture: Getty Images

I had been to Sydney to see my cherubic two-year-old grandson. Being a grandparent gives one's climate change anxieties (What will his world be like? Will his planet even be habitable?) a special piquancy and urgency.

But, although half the time I was looking up and out at this end-of-the-world horror, the other half of the time I was looking down at the nifty device on my lap and reading from it a message of climate-change optimism. That message was embedded in Professor Dagomar Degroot's thought-kindling feature Little Ice Age Lessons, just published in the online Aeon magazine. Degroot is an environmental historian.

Those of you who do not do as much climate change reading homework as I do (for as well as being so grandparentally climate anxious I am a girly swot) will not know that there has arisen a timely new genre of writing about environmental history.

It, this genre, opposes the catastrophist notion that climate change has........

© Canberra Times