Category Archives: Environment and climate

GILES PARKINSON. Bad news for coal-huggers: Renewables at 50% by 2030.

 “King coal to rule for 20 more years” screamed the front page lead headline in The Australian, following the release of the Australian Energy Market Operator’s 20-year blueprint for the future of energy, known as its Integrated System Plan.

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MUNGO MACCALUM. ACCC Report ignites squabbling.

Just when you might have thought you were getting a grip on the tin full of worms masquerading as the government’s energy policy,  along comes yet another authoritative report.

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JOHN QUIGGIN. Australia’s failed energy policy needs more than just a Band-Aid (the Guardian 13.07.18)

The ACCC report is a mishmash of cognitive dissonance and half-baked suggestions for fixing the unfixable.

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KATHARINE MURPHY. ‘We’ve turned a corner’: farmers shift on climate change and want a say on energy.

National Farmers’ Federation head Fiona Simson says people on the land can’t ignore what is right before their eyes.

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ANDREW GLIKSON. Abbott’s views on climate change

Since 2015 when the then Prime Minister stated Australia was making a “definite commitment” to a 26% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, and possibly as high as 28% reduction”,  now Abbott states he did not foresee as prime minister “how … Continue reading

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ANDREW GLIKSON. The rise of fascism on the sinking Titanic.

In her new book “Fascism: A Warning” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I27X9L8rReo), Madeleine Albright’s states that the Fascism of a century ago was not atypical: “In hindsight, it is tempting to dismiss every Fascist of this era as a thoroughly bad guy or a … Continue reading

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GRAEME WORBOYS. Kosciuzko. The destruction of a national heritage icon?

NSW Deputy Premier and State National Party Leader John Barilaro’s 2018 Kosciuszko Wild Horse Heritage Legislation is the single greatest political and ideological undermining of the conservation and protection status of Kosciuszko National Park in its 75 year history. It … Continue reading

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MICHAEL PASCOE. Electricity – driving towards the coal cliff

How bad, how dumb, how driven by internal political stupidities, how simply nonsensically odd are the electricity troglodytes pushing to keep the old Liddell coal-fired power station open for a few more years? Their case is destroyed by a single … Continue reading

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JOSHUA GILBERT. All the farms a stage …

As the ever closing climate change frontier looms upon Australian Shores, with signs already evident in most parts of the country, the question remains- when will our politicians act? After the failure and promises of Governments of the past, impending … Continue reading

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SAM HURLEY AND KATE MACKENZIE. Climate horizons.

Companies are still lagging on modelling and disclosing impacts of climate change – more business, government and regulatory action is required. 

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2018 Lowy Institute Poll – Climate change, renewables and coal.

Despite the debate and political rhetoric, most Australians have not been persuaded to support coal over renewables for the nation’s energy security. Almost all Australians remain in favour of renewables, rather than coal, as an energy source. In 2018, 84% … Continue reading

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STEVE RINTOUL AND STEVEN CHOWN. Antarctica has lost 3 trillion tonnes of ice in 25 years. Time is running out for the frozen continent.

Antarctica lost 3 trillion tonnes of ice between 1992 and 2017, according to a new analysis of satellite observations. In vulnerable West Antarctica, the annual rate of ice loss has tripled during that period, reaching 159 billion tonnes a year. Overall, … Continue reading

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ANDREW GLIKSON. Silence over the acceleration of global warming.

“To ignore evil is to become an accomplice” (Martin Luther King) If there is a single critical issue science has ever conveyed, it is that altering the composition of the Earth’s atmosphere can only bear fatal consequences for nature and … Continue reading

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SOPHIE VORRATH. Martin Green – Australia’s “father of PV” – beats Elon Musk to Global Energy Prize.

Australia’s “father of PV,” UNSW Scientia Professor Martin Green, has been awarded the 2018 Global Energy Prize, beating out a shortlist that included Tesla’s Elon Musk, and becoming the first Australian to win the $820,000 gong.

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IMOGEN ZETHOVEN. Outsourcing Reef Protection.

The outsourcing of nearly half a billion dollars of taxpayer funds to an independent Foundation to protect the Great Barrier Reef is unusual by any measure.

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ANDREW GLIKSON. An Orwellian climate endangers planet

“Two plus two is five – if the party says so” (George Orwell). Should anyone record the history of the 20th and 21st centuries, they may report that, while temperatures and sea levels were rising, the human sense of reality … Continue reading

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GRAEME WORBOYS. Save Kosciuszko.

Australians need to save Kosciuszko from legislative action that will lead to the decline of one of Australia’s most beautiful areas, its mountain water catchments and unique alpine native animals and plants.

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DAVID SPRATT. Senate report recognises climate change as existential risk, but fails to draw the obvious conclusions.

Climate change is “a current and existential national security risk”, according to an Australian Senate report released on Thursday 17 May. It says an existential risk is “one that threatens the premature extinction of Earth-originating intelligent life or the permanent … Continue reading

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PETER DAWSON. Review of Sunburnt Country.

Peter Dawson reviews Sunburnt Country’ – Dr Joelle Gergis’ new book on Climate Change Climate Scientist, Dr.Joelle Gergis’s book pulls together from wide-ranging sources the story of the Australian climate since white settlement, but also reaches back 1000 years and … Continue reading

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MANDY FREUND, BEN HENLEY, KATHRYN ALLEN, PATRICK BAKER. Recent Australian droughts may be the worst in 800 years.

Australia is a continent defined by extremes, and recent decades have seen some extraordinary climate events. But droughts, floods, heatwaves, and fires have battered Australia for millennia. Are recent extreme events really worse than those in the past? In a … Continue reading

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ANDREW GLIKSON. Methane, Coal Seam Gas and the demise of the planetary life support system.

The extraction and transfer from the earth crust to the atmosphere of every economically available molecule of carbon, including coal, oil, tar sand oil, shale oil, methane gas, coal seam gas and other forms of hydrocarbon, constitutes the most significant … Continue reading

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GILES PARKINSON. Turnbull’s election budget dumps on climate and renewables.

What is widely regarded as the last budget to be delivered by the Turnbull government before the next federal election ceded no ground on climate policy, insisting that it’s much criticised emissions reduction targets would remain unchanged.

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IMOGEN ZETHOVEN. Rescuing the Reef … again.

There must be a federal election coming as the government has announced a rescue package for the Great Barrier Reef. Like a damsel (fish) in distress, the Reef has experienced many rescue packages in the past. As early as the … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Macron tests his entente cordiale with Turnbull on climate change.

France’s President Macron is taking the opportunity while briefly in Australia to bully, embarrass, shame, blackmail, whatever, Prime Minister Turnbull into taking meaningful action on climate change and become the real leader the Australian people and Macron himself are looking … Continue reading

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Media Watch. How News Corp and The Australian mislead us on climate change.

Great Barrier Reef coral bleaching The Australian and Cairns Post highlight a dissenting view on whether global warming is the cause of mass coral bleaching. 

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JULIE P SMITH. Live sheep exports are not worth the moral cost.

Growing up near Midland on the outskirts of Perth during the 1960s and 1970s, I endured the weekly stench from the local abattoir. It was the price we paid to get meat to population centres. My first job was in … Continue reading

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IAN DUNLOP. Climate Change: The fiduciary responsibility of politicians & bureaucrats. Part 2 of 2.

“Fiduciary: a person to whom power is entrusted for the benefit of another” “Power is reposed in members of Parliament by the public for exercise in the interests of the public and not primarily for the interests of members or … Continue reading

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IAN DUNLOP. Climate Change: The fiduciary responsibility of politicians & bureaucrats. Part 1.

“Fiduciary: a person to whom power is entrusted for the benefit of another” “Power is reposed in members of Parliament by the public for exercise in the interests of the public and not primarily for the interests of members or … Continue reading

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JOHN MENADUE. The banking royal commission confirms our worst fears about many business executives and crony capitalism

There was a revealing heading in an article a while back by Ross Gittins, the economics editor of the SMH, ‘Faster growth demands better chief executives’. He concluded his article by pointing to the need for business leadership to seize … Continue reading

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EMMA CARMODY. Lack of transparency in irrigation efficiency programs

An article by Kerry Brewster in the Guardian this week reports on a significant fraud investigation by Queensland’s Major and Organised Crime Squad (Rural) into subsidies granted to a landholder under the Healthy Headwaters Water Use Efficiency Program.

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