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The Australian bushfires have claimed 27 human lives, an estimated 1 billion animals are feared dead, and thousands of properties have been completely decimated.

The fires were caused by extreme heat and dryness, the result of 2019 being the country's hottest year on record, with average temperatures 1.52C above the 1961-1990 average.

The area hit hardest by the fires, New South Wales, also had its hottest year on record, with temperatures rising 1.95C above average.

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The Planet

If you peruse the comments on any article about climate change, you'll see scores of people claiming that climate change is a hoax and that the masses are being duped by some version of a globalist conspiracy in which thousands upon thousands of professional earth scientists are being paid off by boogeyman George Soros. Such denial about the reality of climate change crosses cultures, but one group is particularly prone to questioning the scientific consensus: white American evangelical Christians.

According to Pew Research, over a third of evangelical Christians claim there is "no solid evidence" that climate change is happening, and white evangelical Christians in the U.S. are much more likely to be skeptical of the science than other demographics. Most of the strongest voices in the climate change denier camp are religiously and politically conservative, which may lead those who view the world in binary, black and white terms — conservative/liberal, Republican/Democrat, saved/damned, good/evil — to automatically swing toward listening to deniers before listening to the vast majority of scientists.

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The Planet