Australians urged to Slip, Slop, Slap, Slide, Seek…and Hide.

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Health authorities are urging Australians to protect themselves from the sun during the summer holidays with a renewed campaign called Slip, Slop, Slap, Slide, Seek and Hide.

The new slogan extends the original “Slip, Slop, Slap” message, which was launched in response to Australia having some of the highest rate of skin cancer cases in the world.

The long-running slogan encourages everyone to slip on some clothing, slop on some suncream and slap on a hat while in the sun. The new slogan advises people to also slide on some sunglasses and seek shade.

It is the “Hide” message which confused some Australians, and which prompted clarification from health authorities.

“Australians are urged to hide because the sun is becoming stronger every year. It is vital to hide from the sun in order to avoid skin cancer, which is still a major cause of death in the country,” explained authorities.

Australians are also encouraged to hide from shame, as the country has the biggest per capita carbon footprint of any nation on earth.

The country’s continued use and support of fossil fuels, especially coal, is contributing to the climate crisis and global warming and has made the once-popular country an international embarrassment.

Such is Australia’s international standing that the current prime minister, Scott Morrison, was recently labelled “Fossil of the Day” at an international climate conference due to his support of the coal industry. Morrison is also famous for taking a lump of coal into federal parliament during question time and telling Australians not to be afraid.

Aussies are also encouraged to hide from the fact that Australia re-elected a party which is clearly controlled by the coal lobby and is determined to open new coal mines despite compelling and irrefutable scientific evidence that coal mining and burning of fossil fuels contributes massively to the climate crisis.

Ironically, the outdoor lifestyle for which Australia is famous is now under threat as the sun becomes a danger rather than a blessing.

At the time of writing, residents of Sydney are having to hide from the smoke haze from bushfires which have burned out of control throughout the state and are said to have been exacerbated by the climate crisis.

Australians are thus encouraged to hide until the current reality of the country is changed.

Image: Jeremy Bishop

 

 

Only houses with solar panels will be allowed to display Christmas lights.

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Extravagant lighting displays form a major part of household Christmas displays in majority Christian nations. However, these displays rely on electricity, and much of this electricity is still supplied by fossil fuels.

It’s time for a law to protect the joy of Christmas and reduce the damage that lighting displays do to the environment. Only houses with solar panels will be permitted to display lights at Christmas time.

Families can still hang Santa from their roof and cover their lawn in reindeers and fake candy, but the bright lights will have to stay in their boxes until that house is powered by solar.

Houses without photovoltaic cells, or solar panels, traditionally rely on coal to supply energy. Coal has been proven to contribute massively to the climate crisis and scientists agree that a transition away from coal energy must be made – and made soon.

The rule should not be difficult to administer. How do you know if a house is powered by solar? Just look on the roof.

Houses which break the rules can be fined, just as they would be fined for any other act of civil disobedience. The rule could serve as a reward for households which have installed the cleaner form of energy, and an incentive for fossil fuel users to do so.

Will this ever happen?

Probably not.

In countries such as Australia, governments are funded by the coal lobby and are resisting the adoption of renewable energy. They are also working very hard to protect and expand coal mining activities. Furthermore, the average citizen in developed nations will cry foul, dismiss their own impact on the environment and criticise a move like this as another example of political correctness, environmental hysteria and an attack on an innocent tradition that brings joy to their children.

Burning excessive fossil fuels, however, is not innocent – and it is their children who will suffer the consequences of a planet severely damaged by the continued use of fossil fuels.

The situation of the planet is desperate, and seemingly extreme measures need to be taken in order to halt the damage that is currently being done. This includes turning off a few Christmas lights.

Image:www.housebeautiful.com

 

Getting around in China.

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The streets of China are bursting with vehicles. Cities and towns of every dimension are clogged with an array of transportation.

The country’s population explosion has led to the emergence of small vehicles which serve as personal transport, taxi services and delivery vehicles.

In the cities surrounding Xiamen, in southern China, there too existed a proliferation of small vehicles, and most of them carried one prominent appendage; sun protection.

The vehicles hurtled down the streets furnished with some form of shade, be it permanently attached or loosely fixed. A number of passengers were clutching umbrellas, and one guy was just wearing a hat. Almost everyone seemed determined to avoid sun exposure.

Why?

I can only surmise that they wished to remain as fair as possible, because in China fair skin is a sign of high status, as its bearer is said to be of sufficient wealth to avoid toiling in the sun day after day.

They can’t have been concerned about skin cancer, because most of them were destined for lung cancer due to their chain smoking. Maybe lung cancer is a more glorious way to die.

In Harbin, northern China, I caught a ride in a very unique taxi. It was coal powered. Not coal powered in the sense that the earth’s minerals had at some point been extracted and converted, through a complex scientific process, into liquid form that was fed into the tiny taxi through the convenience of a petrol bowser. No, it was literally coal powered.

The driver negotiated the crowded streets of the icy city with one hand on the steering wheel and the other on a spade, which he regularly thrust into a bucket of coal beside him, and fed directly into the boiling furnace which kept the ramshackle piece of tin putting along the road.

A makeshift pipe extracted the fumes from the taxi and straight into the atmosphere. This driver was certainly doing his bit for global warming. Maybe he was just sick of the bitter cold winters in Harbin. I know I was, after only three days of traipsing around the sculptures during the famous snow and ice festival. They are spectacular, by the way. It’s just so damn cold. Too cold for me to remove my gloves and take a photo of the coal taxi. Sorry, but I wasn’t willing to risk frostbite to bring you a photo of the unique contraption.

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Speaking of fuel sources, myself and some friends caught a taxi in Qingdao, China, which was powered by gas. This in itself is not unusual. What was memorable on this occasion was being told by the driver to step out of the taxi while he filled up. For safety, he said. Thus, if we’d remained seated in the taxi, we were in mortal danger, but if we stood only one metre away while he filled up, we were perfectly safe – even as other motorists and nearby pedestrians puffed on cigarettes.

Back in Xiamen, meanwhile, vehicles were also being used for other purposes. It’s not only humans who need to get from A to B.