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"...public opinion deserves to be respected as well as despised" G.W.F. Hegel, 'Philosophy of Right'

a future climate scenario for Australia « Previous | |Next »
March 5, 2014

The State of Climate Report --2014 is the third in a series of reports produced by CSIRO and the Australian Bureau of Meteorology and it confirms past trends and projections. No doubt the Abbott Government will ignore it as it continues its rhetoric of dumping the "carbon tax" so as to decrease the costs of business, restore profitability, and increase economic growth.

The State of Climate Report --2014 states that the evidence is clear that human-induced climate change is continuing to increase the risk of extreme weather and temperatures:

(1) Australia’s climate has warmed by 0.9°C since 1910, and the frequency of extreme weather has changed, with more extreme heat and fewer cool extremes.

(2) Rainfall has declined since 1970 in the southwest, dominated by reduced winter rainfall. Autumn and early winter rainfall has mostly been below average in the southeast since 1990.

(3) Australian temperatures are projected to continue to increase, with more extremely hot days and fewer extremely cool days.

(4) Average rainfall in southern Australia is projected to decrease, and heavy rainfall is projected to increase over most parts of Australia.

(5) Projected sea-level rise will increase the frequency of extreme sea-level events.

The Report also states that it is extremely likely that the dominant cause of recent warming is human-induced greenhouse gas emissions and not natural climate variability and is caused by continuing to pump more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.

So the scenario for Australia is hot days, higher fire risk, more severe droughts. That means droughts are set to be more frequent, longer and more severe. Even if all emissions are stopped tomorrow, there is likely to be enough greenhouse gases in the atmosphere already to push the limits of the internationally agreed "guard rail" of two degrees of warming

No doubt the climate change deniers will continue to say that there is "nothing we can do about it as its just natural, climate has always changed and always will". Rejecting the science and doing nothing is betting on a very low probability scenario.

Failing to mitigate global warming by significantly reducing greenhouse gas emissions is fundamentally equivalent to continuing to smoke cigarettes, driving without a seat belt, or refusing to buy homeowner's insurance. Each of these situations represents the failure to take action to reduce the risks of a dangerous outcome.

Science isn't a matter of opinion. It's not like politics, where any topic of discussion can be debated by anybody with contrary views. Climate policy, in contrast, is in the realm of opinion. Australia's emissions come predominantly from burning coal for electricity hence the need for a price on carbon since it is designed to send a clear price signal to coal-fired power stations by charging them for each tonne of CO2 emitted.

The Abbott Govt's strategy on this, and other issues (the budget, debt, unemployment, de-industrialization) is not to govern the country; it is to wedge Labor. The bad economic news is all Labor's fault. The Abbott Govt's plan to fix things is being frustrated by the Labor Party in the Senate. Labor needs to be destroyed.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 6:48 AM | | Comments (9)


Climate policy is not just sending "a clear price signal to coal-fired power stations by charging them for each tonne of CO2 emitted."

it is also about replacing the sources of energy from coal-fired power stations to renewables.

and reducing the subsidies to the fossil fuel companies i.e. , ending the corporate welfare.

the biggest fossil fuel subsidy in Australia is the fuel tax credit scheme, which is worth $2 billion per year to mining companies. This is funding a rebate on diesel fuel for the mining industry.

Yes and I think we should cut down some of these trees...there's too many damn trees...the fire engines cant get to the fires

"The bad economic news is all Labor's fault"

It's not just Labor--Abbott says that “Green ideology” is hampering economic growth in Tasmania and unnecessarily protecting swaths of the state’s forest. Australia has too many national parks. Natural resources exist to be exploited too make a profit.

"it is also about replacing the sources of energy from coal-fired power stations to renewables."

The utilities are going to make less and less money from conventional generation (coal and gas). Conventional power stations, premised on centralised generation, are being driven out by solar PV, particularly during peak load, whilst the expansion of renewables is pushing the wholesale market price of electricity down.

The Australian utilities are losing money and being forced to close capacity--yet they continue to dig themselves deeper into centralised fossil fuel generation, and to push back against renewables.

Under an Abbott Government business corporations are part of the nexus of power that creates public policy.

I despair, I really do.
I saw the State of Climate Report at another website and there were several denialists who simply refused to believe it and made stupid ignorant comments which were repeated as fast as informed people refuted them.
Mind boggling crazy.

BTW check this out - please.

And similar elsewhere - talk with your feet.

The Abbott Govt saying that the ever-increasing numbers of unemployed take responsibility for there being no jobs and that the coal fired power stations do not have responsibility for the harms to to the climate that their products cause.

So who is going to pay for the Victorian coal power stations to make adequate provisions to clean up their mines when they are finished; and more specially, the cost of cleaning up a gaping wide flammable hole from the Morewell coal mine fire.

Will the coal companies be allowed to t walk away from their mine clean-up obligations.