Show your stripes

We all know there is an enormous gap between the policies of our government and parliament, and the realities of climate change and the urgent need for action.

One group of Australians tried to bridge the gap.

Warming stripes

The world is warming, the trend is quite clear. So to make it easier to visualise this trend, Prof Ed Hawkins, a climate scientist at the University of Reading, developed a graphic showing each year as a vertical stripe – blue showing cooler years and red showing warmer years.

Global temperature graph.
Global temperatures, 1850-2020 (University of Reading)
Warming stripes.
Warming stripes visual by Ed Hawkins (Wikipedia)

Show your Stripes Day

Yesterday, June 21, was the winter solstice in Australia, and the summer solstice in the northern hemisphere – the shortest and longest hours of daylight. Someone decided it would be Show Your Stripes Day.

Show Your Stripes to parliament

So yesterday christian justice organisation, Common Grace, organised a day of lobbying Australian parliamentarians.

Scores of supporters knitted Show Your Stripes scarves, wore them to Canberra, and presented scarves to parliamentarians.

Tanya Plibersek on Show Your Stripes Day
Tanya Plibersek receives a scarf.
Adam Bandt on Show Your Stripes Day
Adam Bandt addresses the group.
Zali Steggall on Show Your Stripes Day
Zali Steggall speaks to camera.

 It is hoped that the scarves, and Show Your Stripes Day, might focus the minds of politicians on the important issues too many of them are ignoring, or not taking seriously enough.

Did it make a difference?

At least six parliamentarians wore the scarves into the chamber. It was noticeable that:

  • 4 of the 6 were Greens or Independent members;
  • 5 of the 6 were women;
  • many others received the scarves (see Common Grace for photos).
Parliamentarians Show their Stripes.
Parliamentarians showing their stripes yesterday.

We can only hope that the scarves made an impact, showing quite graphically how much the world is warming.

The scarves are a clear antidote to the foolishness of those, like Hughes MP Craig Kelly, who focus on the occasional cool weather events and ignore the big picture.

Photos: Common Grace Facebook page, except as otherwise shown. The top photo shows some of the Common Grace group with Zali Steggall MP and students from Radford College with their #ShowYourStripes banner, showing how global temperatures have moved over the past century from cool (blue) to hot (red).

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