Sydney’s Bushfire Smoke Is So Thick The Harbour Bridge Is Invisible
"This wasn't the white Christmas I was dreaming of."
A mix of rage, despair, and defeat has driven Sydney-siders to Twitter today to share photos of the apocalyptic smoke that has descended on the city.
Thick smoke is obscuring most of the city as a result of almost 100 bushfires burning across New South Wales. One mega-fire at Gospers Mountain in Wollemi National Park is covering more than 319,000 hectares, and firefighters believe it will take weeks to put out.
Is this why they call Sydney "the big smoke"? #sydneyfires
— ath-in-a (@athinamallis) December 10, 2019
You’d laugh if it didn’t make you cough:
The Rural Fire Service Headquarters in Sydney’s west has been briefly evacuated, after smoke alarms went off inside the building – mostly likely due to heavy smoke in the area.
— Andy Park (@andy_park) December 9, 2019
We already know that NSW is facing the highest air pollution ever seen in the state. According to the environmental department’s air quality index (AQI), anything above 200 is considered hazardous.
Sydney’s eastern suburbs are currently trying to breath through an AQI of 2552.
The smoke is so thick that the Harbour Bridge is basically invisible.
— ANDREW THOMAS (@andthomsydney) December 10, 2019
Sydney Harbour Bridge pic.twitter.com/L6fzc4ZhXi
— Pace (@bpace99) December 10, 2019
Such is the bushfire smoke, you can't see Sydney harbour from the Sydney Harbour Bridge pic.twitter.com/4Qx5oIwCbY
— Max Chalmers (@maxchalm) December 10, 2019
— WITH INTEGRITY Australia Candles (@JimVillamor) December 10, 2019
Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge are right there… usually. Not sure if I’m more astounded by those people still running around Cremorne Point or those lighting up a cigarette 🤯 #Sydneysmoke #Sydneyair #bushfiresNSW pic.twitter.com/thntgy8Bip
— Dr Claire Wylie (@DrCEWylie) December 10, 2019
Smoke has been drifting in and out of Sydney for weeks, but this morning the choking smoke was extra thick. Sydney ferries were cancelled and some buildings were even evacuated after the smoke set off fire alarms.
Many people are concerned that with rising temperatures this could be Australia’s new normal.
— Albert Portsmouth (@aportsmouth) December 10, 2019
— Dr Omid Ameri (@omidameri) December 9, 2019
— Kourosive (@Kourosive) December 10, 2019
You can barely see from one side of Hyde Park to the other. It can't be more than 250m.
— Shane Miles (@shane___miles) December 9, 2019
— Prof Emma L Johnston AO FTSE (@DrEmmaLJohnston) December 8, 2019
Many are slamming the government for their response to the crisis, and their wider denial that we need to take better action against climate change.
It is SO hard to look your child in the eye on a day like today and assure them (as we parents like to do), and assure them: "Don't worry darling, things will get better soon."
When you know damn well they won't.
That's one of the terrible burdens of #ClimateEmergency
— Wendy Harmer (@wendy_harmer) December 10, 2019
First pic is how the View should look, 2nd pic taken just now. So much smoke I cannot see the Harbour Bridge. The lack of leadership from @ScottMorrisonMP and @GladysB on climate change literally stinks. #ClimateEmergency pic.twitter.com/LiSV4fHzKo
— Annie Parker (@annie_parker) December 9, 2019
1990s: The polar ice caps are melting a million miles away. Meh.
2000s: There’s a drought in regional Australia. That’s a shame.
2010s: I can’t breathe in the Sydney CBD. WTF.
— Madre Jay – Swift Justice (@JayStill4) December 10, 2019
Earlier this afternoon Scott Morrison rejected suggestions the federal government could do more to help the states battle the fires.
For Sydneysiders, an emergency rally is being held tomorrow at the Sydney Town Hall.
Sydney. Tomorrow. Pass it on. pic.twitter.com/pZ35GcoxYi
— Benjamin Law 羅旭能 (@mrbenjaminlaw) December 10, 2019