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Prime minister invokes emergency powers for the first time after Australian floods

“Australia is getting harder to live in because of these disasters.”

That was the word from the country's prime minister, Scott Morrison, as he declared a national emergency for the first time in the nation's history in response to some of the worst floods Australia has ever seen.

The flooding overwhelmed two of the country's largest cities after more than a week of rain long the Eastern coast of Australia.

More than twenty people have died and another 60,000 Australians were forced to evacuate their homes in the wake of the flooding.

The emergency powers, created as a response to Australia's devastating wildfires back in 2020, would accelerate the distribution of financial aid and supplies to the areas most affected by the flooding.

Climate change may not be the only culprit behind Australia's recent bout of extreme weather, but it is definitely impacting the country, according to Andrew King, a climate scientist working at the University of Melbourne.

“For things like extreme heat events, we’ve got a very clear climate change fingerprint,” King told The New York Times in an interview. “But for these kinds of multiday, extreme rain events that cause flooding, it’s quite hard to tell what the role of climate change is.”


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