Climate stories

It was 44° on Christmas Day. It really was scary. And the heat is only going to get worse.

Fiona’s story

Fremantle, WA

  • Heatwave

I’m Fiona Stanley, I’m 75, I’ve worked for most of my life on the health and wellbeing of young people. I’ve become really passionate about climate change because it’s happening now and it’s impacting people around Australia.

Last summer was the hottest summer on record for us in Perth. The whole summer was hot and we had a heatwave over the Christmas period that lasted nearly 10 days. It was the worst heat I’ve experienced.

The heat was really hard on old people. Unlike a lot of people, I had some fans in my house, but even my fans were totally inadequate for that kind of heat. Everyone’s houses got so hot, some days I could hardly move. If you didn’t have air conditioning, old people were advised to spend the entire day in shopping malls to escape the heat. Are we seriously going to tell old people to just sit in shopping centres all day? That’s totally inadequate.

Old people weren’t able to leave the house during the day because it was too hot – we had to go early in the morning or after sunset. It was unbearable to be stuck in the house every day. And if you live alone, you’re suddenly sitting alone all day for multiple days. What does that do to your mental health?

I live in Fremantle and there’s a story called the Fremantle Doctor which is the afternoon sea breeze that comes every day to cool off the town. But during the heatwave it didn’t come at all.

I’ve never experienced heat like that. Some of the nights didn’t get below 33°, people weren’t sleeping. It was 44° on Christmas Day. It really was scary. And the heat is only going to get worse. The number of deaths from heatwaves is already going up.

The young people are going to bear the brunt of all this. I’ll be dead before the really ghastly stuff happens. But they’ll have to live through that. They’re looking at a lifetime of summers like that.

During the pandemic, most Australian politicians initially loved the science – they looked at the science and used it to back up their Covid policies like lockdowns and Jobkeeper. I hoped that the politicians would continue to value science after the pandemic, particularly climate science, and convert it into action. That has not happened.

Climate change is harming us all

Hundreds of people from across the country are sharing their stories to send a clear message to the Australian government - it's time for real action on climate change.

Every story appears as a point on this map. Click around to read how climate change is affecting our communities, and add your own story to the map.

Jann's story

Mallacoota, VIC

  • Fire

I knew I didn’t have the resources to defend my home. I locked up the house and thought to myself ‘I just hope I can walk back in’.

Read my story

Bushfires. Floods. Heatwaves. Disease.

People all across Australia are being harmed by climate change. These are some of their stories.

Rodney’s story

Rodney’s story

Palawa Country, TAS

Read more
Wadhuam Pabai’s story

Wadhuam Pabai’s story

Boigu, Torres Strait

Read more
Wadhuam Paul’s story

Wadhuam Paul’s story

Saibai, Torres Strait

Read more
Uncle Bunja’s story

Uncle Bunja’s story

Yuin nation, NSW

Read more
Talei’s story

Talei’s story

Seisia, QLD

Read more
Eydie’s story

Eydie’s story

Mullumbimby, NSW

Read more
Jann’s story

Jann’s story

Mallacoota, VIC

Read more
Emma’s story

Emma’s story

South Coast, NSW

Read more
Kirsti’s story

Kirsti’s story

Perth, WA

Read more
Georgia’s story

Georgia’s story

Sydney, NSW

Read more
Paul’s story

Paul’s story

Marysville, VIC

Read more
Simon’s story

Simon’s story

Alice Springs, NT

Read more
Rory’s story

Rory’s story

Bathurst, NSW

Read more
Sarah’s story

Sarah’s story

Woonona, NSW

Read more
Shane’s story

Shane’s story

Canberra, ACT

Read more
Charles’s story

Charles’s story

Perth, WA

Read more

Thank you for sharing your story with us.

We're reviewing your story now. As soon as it's up on the website we'll send you an email to let you know. We need as many people as possible to share their climate stories - so we can show the government that Australians need urgent climate action. Will you spread the word by sharing this campaign on social media?

Share on Instagram Share on Twitter Share on Facebook

Share your climate story

Will you stand with us and share your story of how climate change is affecting you, your family and your community?

It doesn't matter how big or small the impact you've felt - everyone's story is important.

Together we can show the government that taking real climate action is in everyone’s interest.