The Australia Bushfires, which have been raging since November with unprecedented destruction, have encompassed an area in Australia approximately equal to the size of South Korea. Not only is the destruction of wildlife, and property absolutely devastating from these fires, but the effects that the fires will have on the Agriculture business could be detrimental to that portion of Australia’s economy.
Each year there is a season of wildfires in Australia which usually extend through the Summer and Fall months. These fires beginning in November are highly unusual as well as the ferocity in which these fires have been spreading. At least two dozen people have been confirmed dead and more are missing as the fires continue raging. So far, roughly 25.5 million acres of land have already been affected by the flames, but this does not account for the smoke that is spreading through the country as a result.
So what does this mean for Australia’s agriculture? The agriculture sector in Australia is 3% of the country’s GDP (Gross Domestic Profit), 77% of which is exported. In 2016 this brought in about $60 billion to Australia’s economy. With farmland being burnt to the ground, animals being caught in the fires, and smoke exposure killing entire herds of cattle and other livestock before they are able to be evacuated, this fire is majorly impacting this industry in a way that previous fire seasons have not.
There are heartbreaking accounts from Australia's recent wildfires, like the one here, that are being reported about people’s entire lives crumbling around them. Even with the support of the community, having all of your livestock die as well as having your property burn down is not something that is easily overcome.
With such grim outlooks on the situation and no real signs of the fire beginning to wane with the limited resources available, 2020 is already proving to be an unimaginably difficult year for Australia. If you would like to read more about the situation, check out the links below and consider donating to help stop the bushfires and the catastrophe they have brought.