Australia is sometimes the petri dish of climate change – a place where global warming is not just a theoretical concept but a tangible reality.
Environmentalists point to the fact that last year was once again the hottest on record, seeing drought and devastating bush fires. And a late snow has forced the ski industry in places like Mount Buller to rely on artificial snow to keep resorts operating.
But the country’s conservative Prime Minister Tony Abbott is viewed by many as a climate change sceptic. He once described the science behind human-induced global warming as “absolute crap”.
He has pledged to abolish the country’s carbon tax and has shut down a number of climate research bodies.
The BBC’s Australia correspondent Jon Donnison reports.