AUSTRALIA is having a taste of what is to come as a result of climate change.
The Bureau of Meteorology advises 2019 was Australia's hottest year on record with average temperature increases greater than the Paris Agreement's desired 1.5 degrees Celsius to 2.0 degrees Celsius maximum.
This has caused mega-blazes, which firefighters describe as something new; something they had never seen before.
At Bathurst Airport, record temperatures were set in May, June, October and December 2019 and January 2020.
Bushfires have burned more than 8.4 million hectares. More than 20 people have died. There have been property losses of over $3.5 billion, $20 billion in lost output, $2 to $3 billion for tourism and retail income and agricultural losses.
The 2008 Garnaut Climate Change Review estimated that by 2050, the climate change cost to Australia will be $1.2 trillion - exceeding the cost of transitioning to renewables.
Renewables offer more employment opportunities than thermal coal mining.
Mining and processing of raw materials, construction, installation and maintenance of renewables including electric vehicles, teaching of skills - there will be enough jobs that no-one will be left behind.
The state's police and fire services deny fires were set by arsonists, yet fake social media claims fires resulted from arson and were intensified by a lack of hazard reduction burning.
NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service reduction burned 139,000 hectares in 2019.
Burns in the Blue Mountains and Hunter region were cancelled when residents complained of the smoke.
Burns are not intended to remove everything; fires will still occur.
In theory, these should be cooler and more controllable, however, climate change has made weather hotter, drier and windier, reducing the effectiveness of burns and the window of opportunity to perform burns.
The Garnaut report, among others, warned of these effects.
A Department of Homeland Affairs report prepared after the 2019 election warned of more frequent and severe heatwaves and bushfires, "disasters" exacerbated by climate change, but was ignored by the government.
Initially, the Prime Minister refused to consider changes to the Coalition's climate policy, however, it seems this stance may now be softening as a result of the fires.
Whatever happens, it is too little, too late.