Australian firefighters spend Christmas Day containing blazes; temperatures to soar

Thursday, 26 Dec, 2019

Responding on Monday, however, the prime minister said Australia's emergency response programs "will always depend on having a large volunteer force".

A Today show presenter took a subtle swipe at Scott Morrison this morning, sneaking in a cheeky comment at the end of his interview with the Prime Minister.

He arrived home on Saturday night after fires in NSW claimed the lives of two volunteer firefighters, Andrew O'Dwyer and Geoff Keaton.

"I'm not going to write off the jobs of thousands of Australians by distancing myself from traditional industry", he told Channel Seven.

Morrison has faced sustained political pressure as the bushfires have raged, following his decision to take a family holiday to Hawaii last week and his conservative Liberal-National coalition government's climate policies.

About 2,000 fire engines and 400 fire engines fought with flame in more favorable conditions, but high temperatures should return.

"We get into some places and there's not a lot of reception and you know, we've got a sort of thing in place that no news is good news, if she doesn't hear from me".

Meanwhile, some 200 firefighters continued to fight on Wednesday with forest fires in the hills of Adelaide, which is now at the watch and act level issued by the South Australia Fire Department.

The NSW Rural Fire Service on Tuesday confirmed 873 homes and 2048 outbuildings have been razed, while another 353 homes have been damaged. In New South Wales and Queensland, the risk of bushfires peaks during the spring and early summer.

The president of NSW's Volunteer Fire Fighters Association, Mick Holton, has also called for compensation, noting that firefighters have had to crowdfund for items like smoke masks. "We will not get on top of these fires until we get some decent rain - we have said that for weeks and months", Fitzsimmons said. "That's still a way to go".

"We're still talking four to six weeks at best before we start to see a meaningful reprieve in the weather".

Mr Morrison claimed Australia's emissions has fallen for the past two years and were 50 million tonnes on average lower every year under the Liberal Government.

Australia committed at the 2015 United Nations climate summit to reduce its emissions by 26 to 28 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030'.

Mr. Morrison insisted that Australia would meet its emissions targets.

Just last week it was reported that some thieves stole 300,000 liters of water from a farmer in Evans Plains, an area of New South Wales heavily affected by drought.

Authorities said 23 firefighters and several police have also suffered injuries, as more than 40,000 hectares (98,842 acres) burned across South Australia.

Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese said this Christmas would be tough for many people, particular those still fighting fires. If you're missing out on an income, that should be an expense we need to consider.

"They're down in my home community in the Sutherland Shire in southern Sydney", Mr Morrison said.

Burford and her team will travel south from their brigade on the Central Coast, to the Blue Mountains west of Sydney, where in the past week alone an estimated 100 homes have been lost.