Category: News

Good news from China (maybe)

Last week China announced what might be a rare bit of good news on climate change – or is it too good to be true? The Chinese government State Council has set a cap on total energy use for 2011-2015, which it claims will cause Chinese coal consumption to peak below 4 billion tonnes per …

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Aussie coal exports 2nd biggest “carbon bomb”

A new report by consultancy Ecofys for Greenpeace, called Point of No Return, details 14 proposed fossil fuel projects, dubbed “carbon bombs”, that would together effectively lock in dangerous climate change. If the 14 projects go ahead, they would add 6.3 Gt/year (greater than present US emissions) to global CO2 emissions in 2020, a 20% …

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It’s high time we talk about coal

As Australia bakes in record-breaking heat and burns in devastating fires, the country’s political and media elites have yet again lined up to defend the industry driving global warming and cast those who speak out against it as extremists.

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2012: The year the world snoozed

The Guardian described 2006 as “The year the world woke up” to climate change. If that’s the case then I guess 2007 was the year we rolled over and went back to sleep. Our alarm clock has continued to ring ever more loudly and clearly, but we just keep on hitting the snooze button – …

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Response to RET Review

Today the Climate Change Authority (CCA) released the final report of its Renewable Energy Target review. It repeats all the same arguments I debunked in my response to the discussion paper released in October, and makes similar recommendations (though some of the details have been refined). The RET Review fails to acknowledge that Australia and …

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Doha climate talks: Gateway to hell?

The Doha climate talks (COP18) reached an agreement on Saturday night. They’re calling it the “Doha Climate Gateway”. To me it looks like a gateway to probable inaction and climate catastrophe. Delegates blatantly ignored the urgent warnings being screamed at them from all directions, and put off consideration of ramping up ambition until next year, …

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Doha climate talks: Dreadful deal on the table

There are just a few hours to go until the Doha climate talks (COP18) are scheduled to finish (though they are likely to go into overtime). Drafts of the key decisions have been released, and the outlook is very black indeed. The most important draft text, agreeing a second period of Kyoto, is still filled …

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Climate deregulation still on agenda

It’s called the COAG Taskforce on Regulatory and Competition Reform, and don’t be fooled by the boring name: it could be the gravestone of Australian climate policies and environmental regulation. Today Prime Minister Julia Gillard meets with the unelected Business Advisory Forum (BAF), and tomorrow with the Council of Australian Governments (COAG), to advance this …

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Doha climate talks: Island states stand up for ambition

“We have not seen concrete progress on the issues that are important to ensuring the survival of all our members. How many conferences do we have to endure where we go back to our countries and say, ‘next year we will increase ambition to reduce emissions, next year we will see finance, next year we …

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Doha climate talks: battlelines

This is the second installment of a three-part blog post about the ongoing Doha climate talks (COP18). Part 1 recaps the history of the negotiations up to 2011; this part covers this year’s battlelines; and Part 3 outlines my opinion on what should happen in Doha and why it matters. Bonn After governments had loudly …

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