Category: Solutions

Can a new political party save the planet?

In the course of researching my guide to Australian minor political parties, I discovered the new not-yet-registered party “Save the Planet”. It is a single issue party advocating an emergency response to climate change, comparable to the remobilization of the economy during World War 2. This is because the party recognizes atmospheric greenhouse gas levels …

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If I were Prime Minister…

I recently wrote a submission to the Australian independent Climate Change Authority’s Caps and Targets Review. Unfortunately, indications so far suggest the Review may be heading in a direction different from what I had hoped. I do not want to have wasted all the effort I put into my submission, whose level of detail almost …

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Is it time to abandon emissions trading?

Yesterday the European Parliament voted down a European Commission proposal to postpone the auction of 900 million permits for the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS) from 2013-2015 until 2019-2020 (called “backloading”). The proposal was predictably opposed by Poland and other eastern European countries, and unfortunately also met resistance from conservative forces within some …

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Caps Review Part 7: Complementary measures

This is the seventh part in a series about the Caps and Targets Review being conducted by the Australian Government’s independent Climate Change Authority (CCA) this year. Part 1 summarized the global climate crisis, Part 2 explained the importance of the review and how CCA should approach it, Part 3 outlined the role Australia should …

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Caps Review Part 6: ETS design flaws and pitfalls

This is the sixth part in a series about the Caps and Targets Review being conducted by the Australian Government’s independent Climate Change Authority (CCA) this year. Part 1 summarized the global climate crisis, Part 2 explained the importance of the review and how CCA should approach it, Part 3 outlined the role Australia should …

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Caps Review Part 5: Emissions caps

This is the fifth part in a series about the Caps and Targets Review being conducted by the Australian Government’s independent Climate Change Authority (CCA) this year. Part 1 summarized the global climate crisis, Part 2 explained the importance of the review and how CCA should approach it, Part 3 outlined the role Australia should …

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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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Doha climate talks: my priorities

This is the third 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; Part 2 covers this year’s battlelines; and this part outlines my opinion on what should happen in Doha and why it matters. Most analysts treat Doha as …

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The fossil-fuelled war on renewables

In recent months, ~2 GW of Australian coal-fired electricity generation has been closed temporarily or permanently (~2.5 GW in winter), comparable to the 2 GW that would have been closed by the abandoned policy of contracts-for closure. Some might conclude Australia is finally beginning its transition to a low- or zero-carbon economy, and we can …

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Laggard to Leader

A landmark report was launched a few weeks ago by Beyond Zero Emissions (BZE), Laggard to Leader: How Australia Can Lead the World to Zero Carbon Prosperity. Laggard to Leader is at its heart a response to the oft-heard arguments that Australia is too small for our actions to make a significant difference to global …

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