Australian police investigating the bushfires have arrested more than 180 alleged arsonists since the start of 2019. But apparently they forgot to send the memo to Russell Crowe and Cate Blanchett, both of whom insisted in their Golden Globes acceptance speeches that the Australian bushfires were in fact caused by ‘climate change.’
“Make no mistake. The tragedy unfolding in Australia is climate change-based,” declared climate expert Crowe on Sunday, in a speech read out for him at the Golden Globes by Jennifer Aniston, supposedly because Crowe was too busy at home “protecting his family from the devastating bush fires.”
But the evidence from Australia appears to contradict this.
According to the Australian:
Police arrested 183 people for lighting bushfires across Queensland, NSW, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania. NSW police data shows that since November 8, 24 people have been arrested for deliberately starting bushfires, while 184 people have been charged or cautioned for bushfire-related offences.
Various theories have been advanced for the motivation of the alleged arsonists. Some have theorised that it in some cases it may be a form of ‘arson jihad’, as advocated last year by Islamic State.
— The Doctor (@KmMalvey) January 7, 2020
Others have suggested it may be the work of fanatical greens as a way of drawing attention to their pet issue, climate change.
Environmental terrorists pushing the climate change hoax
— Sven (@cmill59) January 7, 2020
But the truth, in most cases, may be much more prosaic.
Melbourne University Professor Janet Stanley, quoted in the Australian, said that the arsonists were typically young males aged 12 to 24 or older men in their 60s – generally from an unsettled background.
“They are often kids not succeeding in school, or they have left school early and are unemployed. The boundaries between accidentally and purposefully are unclear because many arsonists don’t plan on causing the catastrophe that occurs. Often there is not an intention to cause chaos and the penalties for accidentally lighting a fire are far less than purposefully lighting a fire.”
UPDATE: This story has been amended to reflect new information about arson as reported by the Australian.