The city of Melbourne, Australia, has just recorded the worst air quality in the world. Melbourne has previously been listed as the “most liveable city in the world” on several occasions. This air quality decline is a consequence of the fires in Eastern Victoria and is obviously a minor nuisance compared to the disasters of the fires themselves.
There is a reduced level of visibility and the smell of smoke is always concerning although for some it is a health issue. Most people find breathing harder but for a few people including asthmatics it can be dangerous.
This smoke will, hopefully, blow away in the next few days but the question will remain — what can we do to prevent this from happening again. This issue is not just limited to Melbourne but there are a number of cities around the world where just breathing there is a health risk. There are government spokespeople who are saying this is not the time to discuss this but when will it be?
As a planet, we need to, while we still can, look at the impact we are having on the planet and find a way to stop and hopefully repair the damage we have caused. This should start with looking at climate change and pollution in general.
There is no Planet B.