Category Archives: Climate change

GILES PARKINSON. Coalition’s stunning hypocrisy – and ignorance – on renewable energy.

  The Coalition appears to have abandoned all pretence that it supports renewable energy, now contradicting assurances by the grid owner and market operator – and now the biggest generator in the country – that the source of energy was not at … Continue reading

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GILES PARKINSON. Dumb politics means we may be stuck with an even dumber grid

  It was just six years ago when Malcolm Turnbull, then deposed Liberal Party leader, attended the launch of the Beyond Zero Emissions Zero Carbon plan for 2020, which suggested Australia should and could attain 100 per cent renewable energy by 2020. … Continue reading

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GILES PARKINSON. Uhlmann’s bizarre prediction of “national blackout” if we pursue wind and solar

  The ABC is supposed to have a ban on advertising. But even if it was allowed, money couldn’t buy the sort of advocacy the fossil fuel industry and incumbent energy interests are receiving this week from the network’s chief … Continue reading

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JOHN MENADUE. Malcolm Turnbull – the last straw on climate change and renewables.

  Let’s be clear. All the experts tell us that the power blackout in SA had nothing to do with the energy mix – coal, gas, solar or wind. They all tell us that the blackout was due to the … Continue reading

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GILES PARKINSON. Coalition launches fierce attack against wind and solar after blackout.

  The Coalition government launched a ferocious attack against wind and solar energy after the major South Australian blackout, even though energy minister Josh Frydenberg and the grid operators admit that the source of energy had nothing to do with catastrophic … Continue reading

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DYLAN McCONNELL. Was the SA blackout caused by wind or wind turbines?

  It has everything to do with wind – because that’s what blew over the transmission lines. But it has nothing to do with South Australia’s wind turbines. Transmission lines are large power lines that take electricity from generators to … Continue reading

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Anti-global backlash is realigning politics across the West.

In the WorldPost, Nouriel Roubini writes “Across the West establishment parties of the Right and the Left are being disrupted – if not destroyed from the inside.  Within such parties, the losers from globalisation are finding champions of anti-globalisation that … Continue reading

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JACQUELINE PEEL. Are the Coalition and Labor on the same page for emissions trading?

Climate change policy has been a noticeable absentee from political debate in the current Australian federal election campaign. Recent news reports, however, suggest this silence masks secret bipartisanship on the need for an emissions trading scheme – or ETS – … Continue reading

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CHRISTIAN DOWNIE, HOWARD BAMSEY. Election 2016: do we need to re-establish a department of climate change?

With a federal election looming, Australia’s top mandarins will once again be turning their minds to the incoming government briefs, the so-called blue book if the Coalition is returned and the red book if Labor is elected. High on the … Continue reading

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Warwick Elsche. If words were deeds.

If words were deeds – or even credible policies – Malcolm Turnbull might already have joined the company of Australia’s pre-eminent Prime Ministers. All three of Malcolm’s pre-politics callings, journalism, law and banking, have involved the extensive used of the … Continue reading

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Bruce Duncan. Budget ignores growing inequality

Scott Morrison’s Commonwealth budget aims to be politically balanced but, like the Hockey budgets, neglects struggle street. The budget still labours under the neoliberal belief in minimal taxes, small government and maximum freedom for private enterprise. Morrison’s mantra is that … Continue reading

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Will Steffen. CSIRO and climate change: Making policy based on myths

The recently announced cuts to CSIRO climate science have stunned the Australian research community and sent shockwaves through the international climate research system. Claims and counter-claims are flying around the media, the cybersphere, Senate estimates, and elsewhere. To cut through … Continue reading

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Robert Manne. Why we have failed to address climate change.

In this article, published in the December The Monthly Essays, Robert Manne describes the major obstacles to addressing climate change. He refers to the unique nature of climate change and the difficulties that it has presented for scientists to persuade … Continue reading

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Peter Burdon. Why is the business world suddenly clamouring for a global carbon tax?

Among the various interests at the Paris climate talks, it is arguably the voice of business that has emerged most clearly. Many business leaders are now saying that if the world is intent on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, there must … Continue reading

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Jon Stanford. Paris Agreement on Climate Change: Implications for Australia

Despite a generally positive reception to the Paris accord on climate change, the ideologues on both sides of the debate regard it as a failure. For the sceptics, the agreement that developing countries (which played a negligible role in causing … Continue reading

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Brendan Mackey. How good is the Paris Agreement?

  Finally, we have a new international climate change agreement to guide action post-2020. The Paris conference delivered on its promise thanks to skilful diplomacy by the French, a general sense of good will among nations, dedicated national delegates working … Continue reading

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Robyn Eckersley. Australia’s climate diplomacy is like a doughnut: empty in the middle.

There is a profound disconnect between Australia’s international climate diplomacy and its national climate and energy policies. The diplomacy could be cast in positive terms, on the surface at least. During the first week of the climate negotiations in Paris, … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Malcolm Turnbull on climate change.

Since he became Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull has committed himself to Tony Abbott’s policies on climate change. He supports Direct Action. He supports the Abbott government’s carbon reduction targets. At the Paris Conference, the Turnbull government reaffirmed its commitment to … Continue reading

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Travers McLeod. Unusual suspects challenging usual thinking on climate change.

“The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist.” Twenty years ago Kevin Spacey uttered this famous line about his alter ego, Keyser Söz, in The Usual Suspects. Keyser Söz isn’t climate change, but he … Continue reading

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Steve Hatfield-Dodds. Australians can be sustainable without sacrificing lifestyle or economy.

A sustainable Australia is possible – but we have to choose it. That’s the finding of a paperpublished today in Nature. The paper is the result of a larger project to deliver the first Australian National Outlook report, more than … Continue reading

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Erica Feller. Good democracy is challenged by mass migration.

Mass migration in a globalised world might well turn out to become, not least from the perspective of democracy, one of the overarching and defining challenges of our time. Syria and the exodus of millions of Syrians to neighbouring states … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Coal is good for humanity! The Tony Abbott story continues.

The messenger may have changed, but apparently not the message. Only this week our new Prime Minister said ‘Can I simply say, the government’s policies are unchanged’ An obvious example of this unchanged policy is that Malcolm Turnbull has agreed … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Is Malcolm Turnbull sacrificing his principles?

The polls show most Australian voters have welcomed Malcolm Turnbull’s election as Prime Minister. I did. It is very early days, but I am concerned by signs that he is bowing very much to the right wing of his own … Continue reading

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Nicholas Rowley. Cleaning up the mess on climate policy.

It is one of the rarely considered consequences of the sad story of Australia’s national policy response to climate change, that many of our finest public servants have sadly wasted years of analysis and effort to dutifully serve the demands … Continue reading

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Mark Carney and climate change – an historic speech

The following are extracts from a speech given by Mark Carney, The Governor of the Bank of England at a Lloyd’s of London dinner on 29 September 2015 He outlines how climate change is a huge financial risk, particularly for … Continue reading

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Climate Change and Refugees.

We have had a wake-up call about how Western and particularly US policies have destabilised the Middle East with the resulting exodus of refugees. Half of the Syrian population has either fled or been displaced within their own country. Climate … Continue reading

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Lynne Strong. Climate change and farming.

Farming in partnership with nature. I live in a very special part of the world. The view from my front verandah has rolling green hills to the left, the ocean to the right and in front of me – the ocean. You … Continue reading

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Clive Hamilton. Damned Lies, Minister Hunt and Climate Models.

If you believe what you read in the Daily Telegraph saving the planet must mean trashing the economy. That’s their story and they’re sticking to it, no matter what the evidence shows. If the numbers show the opposite, well, they … Continue reading

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David Holmes. Australia’s climate politics on a high wire.

(or – Murdoch and Abbott in climate dial duet) While the politicisation of climate change has transformed climate reporting into something of a circus, the Coalition’s announcement of a 26% emissions reduction target on 2005 levels for Australia by 2030 … Continue reading

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Ian Dunlop and Rob Sturrock. As the tide comes in, Australia chooses to remain the climate laggard

Amidst growing pressure and heightening expectations, on Tuesday Australia announced its intended nationally determined contribution (INDC) target to take to the Conference of Parties in Paris in December. It reinforces the notion of Australia as climate laggard going against the … Continue reading

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