Category Archives: Environment and climate

PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 19 May 2019

The shocking loss of biodiversity and the threat it poses for human welfare have been highlighted recently with reports on the global crisis and New Zealand’s parlous record. Threatened by climate change, Torres Strait Islanders have challenged the Australian government … Continue reading

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ANNIKA DEAN. We cannot afford inaction on climate change

There has been a lot of recent speculation in the media about the economic costs of each party’s climate policies. But so far, there has been little talk of the costs of inaction.  

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ANDREW GLIKSON. The Newspeak road to four degrees Celsius warming.

While a price placed on the Earth, estimated at $5000 trillion (New Formula Values Earth), belongs to the unthinkable, the haggle by conservatives over the price of mitigation of climate change underpins the reality of the Faustian Bargain.  

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MICHAEL MAZENGARB. Global fossil fuel subsidies reach $5.2 trillion, and $29 billion in Australia (Renew Economy)

New analysis commissioned by the International Monetary Fund has shown that global fossil fuel subsidies continue to grow, despite the growing urgency of the need to decarbonise the global economy.

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BELINDA KINKEAD. Australia’s Greenhouse Gas Emissions.

Australia is experiencing a remarkable renewable energy transition – not that you would know if you listen to some federal politicians. The Coalition consistently tells us that Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions are “coming down” and that we’re on track to … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. How do the parties’ environmental policies compare?

If climate change is going to influence your vote this Saturday you may want to know how the three main political parties’ environment policies shape up. Here are three scorecards to help you decide who to favour with your vote.

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 12 May 2019

A new petrochemical and plastics hub is being developed in the USA based on locally mined unconventional gas, while the carbon dioxide produced by Australia’s exports of coal and natural gas greatly exceed our domestic carbon dioxide emissions. In better … Continue reading

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MICHAEL SLEZAK. Climate change a bigger threat to Australia’s interests than terrorism, Lowy Institute poll suggests (ABC 8.5.2019)

Climate change is a “critical threat” to Australia’s interests according to almost two-thirds of Australians — ranked as a more serious concern than international terrorism, North Korea’s nuclear program or cyber attacks from other countries.  

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FIONA ARMSTRONG. Health groups release climate policy scorecard: Coalition earns 0/8

The national coalition of health groups working for climate action, Climate and Health Alliance (CAHA), has released a Federal Election Scorecard after analysing the parties’ policies on climate change and health. 

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MIKE SCRAFTON. IPBES and IPCC: Calamity cannot be averted

The key messages contained Intergovernmental Science- Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services’ (IPBES) Summary For Policymakers are not surprising. The trends have been well known for a long time, perhaps only the current scale of the crisis might be … Continue reading

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CHRIS TURNEY. UK becomes first country to declare a ‘climate emergency’. Why not Australia?

Last Wednesday night a bipartisan UK Parliament passed an extraordinary measure: a national declaration of an Environment and Climate Emergency. The UK is the first national government to declare such an emergency. The decision marks a renewed sense of urgency … Continue reading

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CHRIS MILLS. Powering electric vehicles with ‘‘Swap-n-go” power packs

In Australia, a minuscule 0.3% of vehicles have electric propulsion, notwithstanding that those acknowledging the reality of anthropometric Global Warming recognise that transportation is the largest emitter of greenhouse gases.  Possible reasons for resistance to electric vehicle purchase include high … Continue reading

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ALAN PEARS. The cost of Labor’s Paris Climate Change Policies

Economic modelling is one of many tools for policy development. It is often taken out of context and misused. The present debate over the cost of Labor’s climate policy provides an example. Lack of context, modelling assumptions and selective use … Continue reading

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RICHARD FLANNAGAN. I’m willing to go to jail to stop Adani and save our beloved country. Will you stand with me? (The Conversation)

In this anti-Adani rally speech, novelist Richard Flanagan says the fight against the Carmichael coalmine defines the fight against the climate crisis

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IAN DUNLOP. Modelling Climate Change Minutiae

The hysteria surrounding Brian Fisher’s economic modelling of Coalition and ALP climate policies typifies the predatory delay which has bedevilled the development of any sensible response to our climate and energy dilemma since Australia signed the Kyoto Protocol in 1997, … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 5 May 2019

Land use is the focus this week. From threats to the Fitzroy River in the Kimberley and to Indigenous cultures and lifestyles in the Arctic to cities’ responses to the opportunities and challenges presented by climate change. But to start, … Continue reading

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BERNARD KEANE. The media has failed spectacularly on climate change (Crikey)

The media’s coverage of climate change in the election campaign has reflected the Coalition’s long-term strategy of denialism, rather than a desire for genuine scrutiny.

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ANDREW GLIKSON. The climate and the extinction rebellion

“The first law of humanity is not to kill your children” (Joachim Hans Schellnhuber, Germany’s and the EU’s chief climate scientist.) “we will be in a position where we set off an irreversible chain reaction beyond human control that will … Continue reading

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David Pope’s view: We shall fight them on what’s left of the beaches (Canberra Times 3.5.2019)

In her ‘gotcha’ style of questioning Leigh Sales on ABC challenged Bill Shorten about the cost of his climate change policies. People with any real knowledge of the subject know there is no simple answer. What is clear is that … Continue reading

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IAN DUNLOP. Stopping Adani is a National Necessity, Economically, Financially and for our Survival.

Central banks, regulators and insurers are starting to acknowledge that the risks of human-induced climate change will have far greater economic and financial consequences than the 2008 Global Financial Crisis. Likewise, global investors and corporations are finally accepting that climate … Continue reading

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GEORGE MONBIOT. Only rebellion will prevent an ecological apocalypse (The Guardian)

No one is coming to save us. Mass civil disobedience is essential to force a political response.

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JOHN MENADUE. The Greens– good policies and poor politics.

The Greens have correctly directed criticism at the cruel policies of the ALP and the Coalition on refugees in Manus and Nauru. They are also rightly critical of the major parties on climate change.But on  both issues the Greens have … Continue reading

Posted in Environment and climate, Politics, Refugees, Immigration | 6 Comments

MARC HUDSON. In Australia, climate policy battles are endlessly reheated (The Conversation)

This article is part of a series examining the Coalition government’s record on key issues while in power and what Labor is promising if it wins the 2019 federal election. It might feel like the past decade of climate policy … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 28 April 2019

The United Nations, The Lancet, Australia21 and Extinction Rebellion all, in their various ways, reckon that the environment and human health are going to hell in a handbasket while oil and gas companies invest big to ensure that we don’t … Continue reading

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MELISSA SWEET. What might Greta Thunberg tell the Australian Parliament? (Croakey)

This week, 16-year-old Greta Thunberg, who must surely go down in history as one of the great champions for global health, addressed the British Parliament.

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JOHN MENADUE. Jobs at Adani or on the Great Barrier Reef.

There are very strong grounds for Australia to phase out the mining of steaming coal as soon as possible and certainly not to promote new coal projects such as Adani. Our planet is increasingly at risk.  Protecting the Great Barrier … Continue reading

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TIM WINTON. Our leaders are ignoring global warming to the point of criminal negligence. It’s unforgivable (The Guardian)

Humanity survived the cold war because no one pushed the button. On climate change, the button has been pushed again and again.

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DAMIEN WILLIAMS. We need to keep temperature to a 1.5 degree increase… a letter to the Hon. Mark Dreyfus MP

Labor’s attempt to find the middle ground in its climate policy pays lip service to the warnings that credible scientists are making on the need for drastic cuts to fossil fuel emissions by 2030. The party’s position, outlined by the … Continue reading

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MARRYANNE SLATTERY AND ROD CAMPBELL. Debugging the Watergate complex (The Australian Institute, April 2019)

Interpreting the responses to #Watergate by the Prime Minister and the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources  

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DAVID SHEARMAN. Parliamentary reform is vital to address the complex problems of environmental change.

The poor standing of politicians and the lack of expertise in their ranks and Ministries increasingly results in inadequate policy in complex problems such as climate change. It is essential that the next government commences reform of Parliamentary processes and … Continue reading

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