I’ve clear recollections of the cyclones I skilled rising up. Deafeningly loud rain; home windows flexing out and in as winds take a look at the boundaries of human manufacturing; and timber bending and snapping like bamboo chopsticks in violent gusts that reached practically 300 kilometers, or 185 miles, per hour.
I’ve been pondering currently that being inured to excessive climatic occasions could also be contributing to a different factor that North Queensland is understood for: cussed denial of local weather change.
Whenever you not solely settle for, however count on, such extreme climate occasions to happen each summer season — typically quite a few occasions — extremity turns into normalized.
Whenever you view excessive climate occasions as an impactful however inescapable norm, it’s arduous to consider that you may be exacerbating them, not to mention do something to mitigate them.
It sounds unusual to recommend that conservatism over local weather motion in Australia, and notably North Queensland, comes from a respect of the pure world. There are lots of elements at play within the political equation — for one, coal mining is the largest trade within the area.
However I do consider that the collective annual expertise with extreme-weather occasions lessens the shock worth of local weather change’s existential threats. It makes individuals view local weather change as one thing they’ll put together for and get better from, not one thing they need to forestall or decrease.
There’s a sure Romantic magnificence to this imaginative and prescient of Mom Nature as a drive of superior energy, one which giveth and taketh as she pleases. One in every of Australia’s most well-known poems, “My Nation,” by Dorothea Mackellar, captures this Australian Romanticism:
“I really like a sunburnt nation,
A land of sweeping plains,
Of ragged mountain ranges,
Of droughts and flooding rains.”
There’s a sure magnificence to the dominant architectural type of Queensland properties. Homes are constructed on tall stilts, with the belief that meters-high floodwaters are an actual risk.