Richest woman hits back at Celeste
Australia's richest woman Gina Rinehart has hit back at comedian Celeste Barber who's raised $47 million in less than a week for the bushfire appeal, saying she's more concerned about the "true cause" of the fires.
Earlier this week, Ms Barber called out billionaires, asking why they're not donating to help the Australian bushfire crisis.
She directly tweeted at billionaire Ms Rinehart, who has a net worth of about $14 billion, writing: "If you're in Hawaii on a family holiday I'm going to flip a f***ing table".
However, a spokesman for Mrs Rinehart has now issued a statement saying the wealthy mining magnate prefers to donate privately.
The statement says the billionaire does not want to "rush" to blame climate change for the devastation.
"(Mrs Rinehart) is most concerned that the true causes of this sad devastation are tackled, rather than missed in the rush to blame climate change," the spokesman said in a statement seen by the Daily Mail.
"In particular, restrictions on building dams are lifted, the dangerous restrictions on allowing adequate fire breaks and restrictions on land clearing, which regulations have helped to cause life and stock losses, property damage, and damage to livelihoods and much suffering."
It's understood Mrs Rinehart contributed to a collection for firefighting at a function at her home where 150 guests were present on Tuesday night.
Ms Barber, meanwhile, has racked up more than $47 million in less than a week through her fundraising campaign.
However, she questioned whether billionaires around the world, such as Ms Rinehart, had done enough.
"Remember when Notre Dame burnt down - very sad, don't get me wrong, RIP Notre Dame, historic building," she said on social media earlier this week.
"And something like billions of dollars were raised, by I think like a handful of people. Where are those people now?
"Because I tell you what, every day people are donating $10 here, $10 there, that's what's getting us to now $40 million."
She said if the billionaires donated their version of $10 it would be amazing.
"We need assistance, please billionaires," she pleaded.
People from all over the globe have been flooding the comedian's fire fundraiser page, adding to the already staggering amount she's raised minute by minute.
Barber is regularly taking to her social media accounts to share messages.
"It's so much, so much money, do I stop it now?," she said recently.
"But then I see all the things you guys are sending me, our family are sending us, so many people need help. I can't wrap my head around it. So much wildlife.
"So I'm going to keep pushing. I think we get as much as we can. We've already got so much but we have to help people rebuild, completely rebuild their lives."
She said she was going to talk to the RFS earlier in the week about where the money was going.
She said the money raised, which was initially intended for the NSW RFS, would also be spread to Victoria and South Australia, the Red Cross and families of those killed in the fires, to be decided in consultation with NSW RFS.
Lachlan and Sarah Murdoch have pledged $2 million dollars to recovery efforts. Their contribution will be allocated to organisations focused on rural recovery.