Coming together in times of crisis

Sunday, 17 Nov, 2019

Firefighters are Real Superheroes

Commentary by Sea Shepherd Australia's Managing Director Jeff Hansen

...I love a sunburnt country,
A land of sweeping plains,
Of ragged mountain ranges,
Of droughts and flooding rains.
I love her far horizons,
I love her jewel-sea,
Her beauty and her terror -
The wide brown land for me!…
- Dorothea Mackellar

The fires that have been raging across Eastern Australia are some of the most ferocious, intense, unprecedented and destructive fires our brave firefighters have had to ever take on. Yet they rally with passion, mateship, conviction, heroism, and courage to put their lives on the line to save other peoples lives and homes. They truly are, in every sense, real superheroes.

In a changing climate, scientists tell us to expect worse coming down the line. However, we can not ask any more than we already have of our firefighters. We must unite behind the science, behind the firefighters, behind the communities ravaged by fires and unite behind the little Aussie battlers: our wildlife that has no place to hide. Standing up for a liveable climate, for an Australia that is not further ravaged by increased drought, fires and floods, should not be political, it should not divide us. We have all been part of the problem, and we need to come together to be part of the solution.

We need to find common ground. We love this place we call Australia, a sunburnt country, of droughts and flooding rains, her beauty and her terror; however, scientists tell us this is just the start of the terror of climate impacts if we don’t get our emissions under control.

For now, we must come together and support our firefighters, our emergency service providers, our communities and our wildlife. Then, when the smoke has settled, we must have a real and honest discussion on how we capture the human spirit that has come alive in this current fight and take it together with us all in the fight for a liveable climate.

Jeff Hansen

A critical part to all of this is working with and being guided by first Australians, for they have the greatest knowledge and wisdom that dates back 120,000 plus years, of how to look after and turn back the destruction caused to Australia.

We put down our political badges, we stand together united by a passion for life, for the children of this world who deserve every right to a real future, or we have to ask ourselves do we truly love our children if we fail in this task. We must not fail, for failing is not an option, we must unite.

We all want a future for future generations on this planet; be that clean air, water, food and a liveable climate. 

Together is the way forward, there is always more that unites us than divides us.

We show great appreciation and respect to all the firefighters, emergency service providers, volunteers, communities, nurses, doctors and wildlife carers out there on the frontline in defence of our way of life, with the human spirit we all have in us from living in this magical land of oz.

"Ŋilmurru bukmak djäka wäŋawu - All of us together, looking after country.


To help those on the frontline of the recovery effort, a donation can be made to the following organisations and charities.

NSW Rural Fire Service 

Port Macquarie Koala Hospital

The Salvation Army Disaster Appeal

Friends of the Koala

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