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06 Jan 2020 | 01:11 AM UTC

Australia: Environmental groups plan protests in several cities January 10-14

Environmental activists call for protests in several cities between January 10-14, amid bushfire crisis; heightened security presence and localized transportation disruptions

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AUS

Event

Environmental activists groups are organizing several protests across Australia from Friday, January 10, through Tuesday, January 14, to demand greater government action regarding the ongoing nationwide bushfire crisis. On Friday, participants plan to gather in the following locations (all times are local): 

On Saturday, January 11, activists are also due to gather from 15:30 in Wollongong's Arts Precinct. A similar environmental protest is scheduled in Parramatta on Tuesday, January 14. Participants plan to meet at 17:00 at the Town Hall

A heightened security presence and localized transportation disruptions are expected near all protest sites. Similar protests are possible in other major urban areas in the coming days. 

Context

Over 3 million hectares (7,413,161 acres) of land have been burned, and at least 1298 houses destroyed since the wildfires broke out in NSW on October 9. At least 15 people have also died in the region as of January 1. Authorities have indicated that the fires were due to high temperatures and droughts.

Wildfires are an annual event in Australia between December and February; however, authorities have been on high alert since September 2015 over unseasonably warm temperatures, prompting scientists to speculate that climate change could be extending and increasing the intensity of the fire season.

Advice

Individuals in Australia are advised to monitor developments, avoid all protests and demonstrations, anticipate disruptions to transportation, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities.