Category: Climate

May 21 2014

Bust the budget 2: Fossil fuel profits over fixing climate reality

This is the second part of a series arguing against the Abbott government’s first budget. Part 1 summarizes the overall unfairness and debunks the justification offered for this agenda. This part examines how the budget affects climate, environment, fossil fuel subsidies, business, and science. Unless otherwise hyperlinked, budget facts are sourced from either Joe Hockey’s …

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May 20 2014

Bust the budget to avert a less equal Australia

On Sunday I marched with tens of thousands of Australians against the Abbott government’s first budget. Why are we so angry? Because this budget continues Abbott’s agenda of protecting the rich, the privileged, and the powerful, at the expense of the poor, disadvantaged, and powerless. I’ll start by debunking the justification offered for this agenda …

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Apr 26 2014

Palmer’s revolt leaves Abbott with no climate policy

Australian coal mining billionaire politician Clive Palmer announced on Tuesday that his party’s Senators will vote against the Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF), the Abbott government’s proposed replacement for the carbon price it wants to repeal. Palmer wants the promised ERF funding to be redirected to pensions, and says he is even prepared to block budget …

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Apr 04 2014

Why the WA re-election matters

Western Australia will go back to the polls tomorrow for a rerun of last year’s Senate election (due to the count having been bungled in that state). The re-election will be critical in deciding the makeup of the new Senate from July this year, and is a key opportunity for the Greens. To pass legislation …

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Apr 01 2014

Tony Abbott learns what causes global warming

The following is a transcript of a secretly recorded conversation between Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Environment Minister Greg Hunt in the Prime Minister’s office. Abbott: Come in, Greg. Hunt: Good to see you again, Tony. Abbott: Yes – sorry I haven’t been available much. I’ve been busy talking to the important ministers. Hunt: …

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Mar 28 2014

Senate inquiry bogged down in party lines

A Senate inquiry into the Australian Government’s proposed climate Direct Action Plan reported on Wednesday. The report says nothing new, and I’m fed up with the inane narrow positions which each of the three parties has manoeuvred themselves into. First, the good news. The main report, authored by Labor Senators Lin Thorp, Louise Pratt, and …

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Mar 14 2014

Tasmania needs a Greens opposition

Tomorrow, Tasmanians and South Australians will go to the polls for their respective state elections. In both cases the Liberals are expected to gain government, but the Tasmanian election may present an unexpected opportunity for the Greens. The Tasmanian situation is reminiscent of last year’s federal election, pitting an unpopular governing coalition of Labor (led …

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Feb 27 2014

CCA goes out with a whimper

Australia’s independent Climate Change Authority (CCA) today released the final report of its emissions targets review. It should be obvious to everyone that the Abbott Liberal government will ignore this report. They are trying to pass legislation to abolish the CCA, and are unwinding all the (already weak) policies of the former Labor government. They …

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Feb 26 2014

Abbott has no long-term drought policy

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott today announced a $320 million drought relief package, but it fails to account for the long-term climate change that is drying out Australia. Many rural areas of Australia have been in drought for 16-22 months. 70% of Queensland is now in drought; much of northern NSW and southwest WA is …

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Feb 21 2014

We need to politicize climate change

We’ve all heard the laments: the public has gone cold on climate action because the issue has become so “politicized”. Someone has to say it: we need to politicize climate change. What does it mean to “politicize” something? It means to put it on the political agenda, propel it into the headlines, make it a …

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