The Fantasy Country

3 11 2010

[Yes, I realise that ‘The Lucky Country’ was an ironic term and one of the most widely abused/misused in Australian culture. But trust me, I’m being at least ironic.]

Apart from a need to just write something, anything, before 12 months elapses since I last did, this has been bugging me more and more lately.

Australia has become a fantasy land. Up is down, black is white; climate change doesn’t exist and we best burn more and more of that lovely coal. Read the rest of this entry »

a few simple charts missing from 2007 national GHG accounts

3 07 2009

The Department of Climate Change released Australia’s latest national greenhouse gas accounts under the Kyoto Protocol reporting obligations, covering 2007 data.  The National Greenhouse Gas Inventory [1], updated June 1, is on the DCC website along with online access to the major category data. Maybe it’s just me but they seem remarkably less easy to read, and the reporting categories have changed substantially.

So I’ve knocked up some charts to make the data simpler to understand.

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any ETS is both an emissions floor and an emissions ceiling

19 06 2009

I’ve updated my thinking on the importance of Richard Denniss’ exposition of the futility of voluntary action under the CPRS.

I think Denniss’ expression of this reality of the CPRS as proposed was a reasonably novel perspective. The fact that it represents a ceiling as well as a floor for abatement is not something I’d really seen stated explicitly before. But it’s not a flaw of the CPRS per se, it’s how any ETS works. In fact, in many ways it’s kind of the point.


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Rudd government already worse than Howard?

18 06 2009

Perhaps that should be ‘in general’, but I was thinking primarily of climate change policy and fostering renewable energy in particular. Now that Wong has so ‘masterfully’ tacked the expanded 20%-by-2020 RET (expanded MRET) bill to the fate of the CPRS legislation, it seems both will fail to pass the senate. Certainly in this round, and possibly this year.

So that would be no ETS — no carbon price — and no RET despite being elected on a platform promising strong action in both regards.

I personally think it’s becoming increasingly likely that we are going to a double-dissolution. The Greens will never support the CPRS even remotely close to it’s current form (see Christine’s poignant words of wisdom) and I can’t see how either the Coalition nor Labor can back down from their entrenched positions. And of course now we’ve got Fielding being duped by those bastions of scientific objectivity, The Heartland Institute. (Still, probably wasn’t a tough sell.)

How can the CPRS bill get up before 2010 at this rate? And if the RET bill isn’t changed, that ship sinks too.

Not that I’m saying anything insightful here; I’m mostly just demonstrating I’m still kicking…

why the CPRS is a *maximum* abatement target

19 02 2009

Richard Denniss nails the CPRS with this piece. Absolutely correct: the whole Green Power scheme, for instance, will become totally meaningless in terms of reducing overall emissions. I suppose the best it does it work towards building the infrastructure momentum we ultimately need, but no abatement is realistically going to occur with such a criminally low target operating under standard energy demand growth.

Personally, I used to think emission trading was a wonderful idea. Now I think it’s just so open to gaming, manipulation, and fraud (‘offsets’ anyone?) that the reality is hopelessly compromised…

Kevin Rudd has sold us out to the coal lobby

17 12 2008

So, my loyal readers (… hah!), it’s been a while.

I won’t bother linking to the storm of condemnation of the Australian Rudd government’s betrayal that is the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme. I might write up my own take on the White Paper when I can control the rage enough to read it.

But here’s a letter to our Prime Minister Rudd in protest. I will send it on to a few other politicians for good measure. Of course I know it won’t change anything directly, but every voice counts. As Greenpeace say, what would you tell your children?

Don’t sell our future to the coal lobby

Prime Minister,
Words can barely express my dismay and outrage at your government’s grossly inadequate greenhouse gas emission reduction targets. Read the rest of this entry »

A dark day for Western Australia

13 09 2008

14/09/2008 Sadly, it was not to be — they’ve laid down with the Liberals after all.

So, alas, even with 5 Green MLCs a minority government will have control of both houses of parliament thanks to a party with 4.9% of the primary vote.

There’s something seriously wrong with our ‘representative’ democracy when the Greens (or anyone else) poll 11.7% and have no direct influence in government policy.

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