All fires burning in the Australian state of New South Wales have been declared contained for the first time this season.

The New South Wales Rural Fire Service called it “great news” after “a very traumatic, exhausting and anxious bush fire season so far.” The fire service’s deputy commissioner Rob Rogers said it had been “a truly devastating fire season for both firefighters and residents, who’ve suffered through so much this season”.

However, climate row rages on

But the after-effects will endure, and national soul searching has already begun. Dozens of families have lost loved ones, thousands of homes and farms have been gutted, swathes of the east coast are scarred charcoal-black and millions have had their sense of security shaken. “It will likely take years and a great deal of imagination for us to figure out where we go from here,” said disaster expert Smith.

The question of what is next for Australia is already being asked, most of all of political leaders, and it is being met mostly with finger-pointing and recrimination.


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