Eden-Monaro byelection: Liberal candidate climate bushfire claims wrong and self-serving

Tuesday 30 June 2020

Climate and Health Alliance expert adviser Dr Liz Hanna has dismissed the Liberal candidate for Eden-Monaro Fiona Kotvojs's claims that governments cannot address heat as a cause of bushfires as wrong and potentially self-serving. Ms Kotvojs's claims were made in a submission to the Bushfire Royal Commission.

"The Liberal candidate's claims in the submission are simply wrong and seem to be wilfully refuting the evidence. There can be no denying that the bushfires that tore through communities in Eden-Monaro last summer were greatly intensified by climate change and our fossil-fuelled global warming," Dr Hanna said.

"Perhaps the Liberal candidate is pushing the line that fuel reduction is the only protection from fires because her own property is surrounded by forest that her family have been trying unsuccessfully to get permission to clear.

"I'm concerned these comments are self-serving. Candidates should serve in the interests of their electorate, not their own personal interests.

"For any politician to deserve a vote, they must demonstrate the will and capacity to act to protect people's health and that of the environment in order to provide a safe future for everyone. This is possible with the right policies.

"Climate change is not only here, it is accelerating, and the whole world is suffering. Last summer Australia burned, right now the arctic is burning.

"People in Eden-Monaro are too smart to fall for the Liberal candidate's claims. They have met the frightening face of climate change. They have seen it, lived it and breathed it.

"They want a candidate who listens to the science and supports urgent climate action."

Media contact: Adam Pulford, 0424 885 387