Thursday, January 16, 2020

Some of Australia's most valued nature has been razed, but some survived

I've written very little about the Australian wildfires, except to remark on how large an area was affected, relatively speaking. No diatribe on climate change, no character assassination of Scott Morrison.
But I did read an article today cataloging some of the natural devastation it has wreaked. Specifically, at least 80% of the Blue Mountains World Heritage Site has burned, which may have impacted the diversity of eucalypts for which it received its WHS designation. Also, at least 50% of the Gondwana World Heritage Site, with its pristine protected rainforest, has also been torched.
On a brighter note, Wollemi National Park was miraculously saved, after some sterling work by firefighters. Just 100 miles from Sydney, the park protects a rare species of pine that dates back to the time of the dinosaurs. Just 200 of these "dinosaur trees" exist in their natural habitat, and they were thought to be extinct until as recently as 1994. A muted cheer for the wollemi trees (and the firefighters)!

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