My state is on fire. Right now 70 fires are burning right across Queensland and it’s only the first week of September. We have the whole summer ahead of us. We’re now more vulnerable to fires as hotter and drier weather becomes the new normal because of climate change. 

Last night, I couldn’t sleep. I was thinking of the firefighters working around the clock to save lives and homes. I was worrying about the families spending the night in evacuation centres not knowing if they would have a home to go back to. I was remembering my family holidays on the Sunshine Coast not too far from the fires and the hikes to see ancient Beech trees near Binna Burra.

I couldn’t stop thinking about the incredible young AYCC and Seed volunteers who spend their time fighting for climate justice in these communities who are now being battered by these fires.

Queensland is being hit so hard with climate damage that now we’re in a constant state of repair and rebuild. We’re still recovering from last summer that saw floods in Townsville, fires in Rocky, unbearable heat in Brisbane suburbs and drought across the rest of the state. The science is clear and it’s telling us that this is only going to get worse if we don’t leave coal and gas in the ground. 

I am furious that big coal companies are getting away with trashing our climate and fueling more extreme weather for a quick buck.

They’re dirty money is manipulating our politicians to ignore the climate damage and do them favours. They have divided our communities and made us distrust each other for where we live. For too long a handful of rich coal bosses have handed us and our politicians a false story that we have to give up our wellbeing and jeopardise our future when in fact we know that clean, locally made energy from the wind and the sun is ours to have. 

Whether you are from the heart of the city or live far in the city, we can agree that we just want to be safe. To keep Queenslanders safe from extreme weather, we need to better resource our firefighting & public services and take real action on climate change. That starts with keeping fossil fuels in the ground and building big renewables owned by Queenslanders. That will only be possible if Queenslanders from all walks of life stand together and demand it. 

Only hope and solidarity shine through the darkness. We’ve been here before and sadly, we will be here again.

When disaster strikes in Queensland, we rally around our neighbours and we get stuck in to cleaning up the mess. Our communities are resilient, powerful and beautiful.

Our movement has achieved so much! We stopped plans to dredge our precious Great Barrier Reef for coal ports, stopped $1 billion of taxpayers money go to Adani and got the big 4 banks to walk away from funding dangerous coal projects. We’re just getting started! We’re taking the power away from greedy coal companies and back into our own hands.

That’s why hundreds of Queensland AYCC volunteers from the Gold Coast to Cairns are getting organised to take on big coal and fight for just solutions to the climate crisis. Be part of it - sign up to volunteer with our movement: https://www.aycc.org.au/volunteer