Tasmanian fires: update

There have also been fires in South Australia:

Insurers have declared the fires a catastrophe:

Insurers have declared the bushfire-hit towns of southern Tasmania a catastrophe.

Fires have destroyed dozens of buildings across the Tasman Peninsula, east of Hobart, spurred on by record high temperatures.

With fires still threatening homes in the region on Saturday, the Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) declared the affected towns a catastrophe, and created an industry task force to respond to the damage.

Here is what the ICA said:

The bushfire-hit Forcett and Dunalley zone of south-east Tasmania was today formally declared a catastrophe by the Insurance Council of Australia (ICA). 

The declaration initially covers the worst-affected areas of Forcett, Dunalley, Copping and Murdunna, and also includes Connellys Marsh, Boomer Bay, Primrose Sands, Susans Bay, Eaglehawk Neck and Taranna. 

ICA CEO Rob Whelan said the catastrophe declaration meant insurers had established a taskforce to escalate the industry’s response. 

He said the ICA would seek to ensure policyholders in bushfire-affected communities received the help they might need as quickly as possible 

“It is much too early for the ICA to estimate the cost and extent of the damage, though we have had reports of several dozen homes having been badly damaged or destoyed,” Mr Whelan said.

My thoughts are with the communities impacted by these fires – thankfully we did not see a repeat of the Black Saturday fires.

12 thoughts on “Tasmanian fires: update

  1. john byatt says:

    If we can deny and dismiss the science of increasing extreme heat wave events and the resultant firestorms then you must wonder just what the hell it will take.

    .

    • crank says:

      Nothing will do. Every disaster can, and will be denied, by appealing to some fabulous ‘historical precedent’ or ‘natural variability’. This is a matter of quasi-religious ideological zealotry of a tiny and shrinking number of those afflicted by the Rightwing Authoritarian personality disorder. They are manipulated by hard Right ideologues in the MSM and propaganda tanks because decarbonising would destroy trillions in ‘wealth’ and the Hard Right, even those that have bred, do not give a stuff what happens to humanity after they are dead.

  2. john byatt says:

    We think of fires as just part of the carbon cycle returning CO2 to the atmosphere, that would be the case if fires only burnt out biomass that was only a few years old firestorms however return carbon to the atmosphere that has been locked up in forestry for many decades, more fires equals increased atmospheric CO2 and increased warming.

    found this one

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071101085029.htm

    • crank says:

      Peat fires worsen the situation, and soot, falling on snow, accelerates glacial melting. Moreover mass tree death is occurring across the planet, caused by disease, spreading insect pests and rising levels of tropospheric ozone. It is another vicious spiral downwards to Hell. When we get there, the denialists will finally be at home.

  3. Cugel says:

    Antarctic sea-ice extent reached a brief maximum for the satellite-era only six months ago, and that’s in your neck of the woods. The significance of that in denier circles was never spelled out, but the absence of media-coverage was presented as significant in itself. Heaven forfend that this be taken to reflect a conspiracist bent in denialism, but the under-reporting (in the gobal sense) of these events has aroused no such interest in those denier circles. Make of that what you will.

    It appears that the Southern Hemisphere gets pretty sketchy coverage in the greater scheme of things.

    • john byatt says:

      I found this to be far more significant

      a new global record low for the maximum global sea ice area

      2005: 22.051
      2006: 21.776
      2007: 21.234
      2008: 22.177
      2009: 21.003
      2010: 21.043
      2011: 20.902 (previous record)
      2012: 20.650

      I dont think that the record low arctic made much of a headline either , about ten lines of small column space in many papers on about page six.

      • crank says:

        Snow and ice coverage on land is also falling to record lows, exacerbating the ‘albedo flip’ that is hastening our end.

    • john byatt says:

      Not sure what you are saying

      http://theclimatescepticsparty.blogspot.com.au/2012/10/record-antarctic-sea-ice-noaa.html

      funny when NOAA posts about record high se ice they become the deniers authority, yet when it refers to temperature increase or sea level rise or whatever they deny it and claim NOAA hoax, weird, but understandable as most of them are creationists who belive that it is all about a OWG.

    • Steve says:

      I agree that there is often less coverage of Southern Hemisphere events. One of the reasons for this is that more people live in the Northern Hemisphere.
      The polar winter ice extents make little difference to the adsorption or reflection of sunlight because there is very little sunlight in the polar winters.
      It is in summer that the ice can reflect the sunlight.

  4. Watching the Deniers says:

    Thanks for info John.

  5. Steve says:

    Adelaide had the fourth hottest day on record yesterday. Tuesday is also forecast to be very hot, and this is on top of a hot and dry spring. More fires are possible here.
    http://www.abc.net.au/am/content/2013/s3664627.htm

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