Politics

People Are Trying To Use a 112-Year-Old Poem To Prove Climate Change Isn’t Real

Stand by to see if anyone manages to unearth any Dorothea MacKeller poems about rising global temperatures, extended bushfire seasons or mass extinction events.

Dorothea MacKeller My Country

People who refuse to trust climate scientists’ opinion on climate science are instead basing their opinion on a poem written 100 years ago by a 22-year-old in England.

Yep. That’s the current standard of our intellectual debate, people.

You’ll probably be familiar with the poem — ‘My Country’, by Dorothea MacKellar — which waxes lyrical about Australia being a land of drought and flooding rains.

The most iconic stanza goes like this:

“I love a sunburnt country,
A land of sweeping plains,
Of ragged mountain ranges,
Of droughts and flooding rains.”

This week the leader of the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party Robert Borsak invoked the poem to try and give context to our recent extreme weather events — although he mistakenly credited Helen Keller instead of Dorothea MacKeller.

“She was right, I mean drought and flooding rains are what Australia’s all about … that’s the way it’ll always be,” he said.


Alan Jones also shared sections of the poem to his Facebook page where he astutely observed that there were no coal-fired power stations or global warming alarmists back in the early 1900s.

“And people from Malcolm Turnbull down want to paint alarmist pictures around the world about something the 19 year old Dorothea Mackellar observed in 1904,” Jones wrote.

Famously, England’s industrial revolution depended almost entirely on coal which sent pollution levels soaring, filled the skies with smog and led to a lot of serious health impacts.

That’s where Dorothea was living when she wrote the poem. It was actually her homesickness for Australia, where she was born in 1885, that inspired her to write ‘My Country’. It was first published it in the London Spectator Magazine in 1908.

Look, we’re pretty bored of constantly debunking this one, but for those in the back — over the last 4.5 billion years our climate has changed a lot. In the past that’s mostly been because of small variations in Earth’s orbit.

Science now shows that our planet is warming at an unprecedented rate, and it’s because the carbon dioxide we’ve emitted since the industrial revolution has become trapped in our atmosphere and heated the planet.

NASA has more on that here if you want to arm yourself with information for the next time someone quotes “My Country” at you.

So in summary no, what’s taking place is not normal (to the extent that we’re currently seeing it). And the great part about science is that it can’t be disproven by someone quoting poetry at you.

Stand by to see if anyone manages to unearth any MacKeller poems about rising global temperatures, extended bushfire seasons or mass extinction events.


Photo credit: State Library of New South Wales/ Photographer Glen Broughton