Top climate scientists around the World are saying that to have a high probability of avoiding a catastrophic 2 degree Centigrade temperature rise the World must stop GHG pollution by about 2050. However in Australia, a world leader in annual par capita greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution and in fossil fuel exports, there is an unspoken agreement between the major parties (the Liberal-National Party Coalition Opposition and the Labor Party Government, aka the Lib-Labs) that Australia will keep burning and exporting fossil fuels until the World makes it stop. At huge expense to Australian taxpayers the pro-coal, pro-gas, anti-environment Australian Labor Government is posting out to all Australian householders a 20 page booklet called “What a carbon price means for you. The pathway to a clean energy future” (.pdf) and which dishonestly claims that the Gillard Labor Government is “tackling climate change”. Australian taxpayers should be enraged that they are having to pay for being lied to by omission and commission and that their children are being lied to in a process of massive, nation-wide intellectual child abuse.
Before proceeding to systematically demolish the lies of this document, it is important to get the basic facts straight.
Australia is among the world leaders in annual per capita greenhouse gas pollution, coal exports and liquid natural gas (LNG) exports. Thus “annual per capita greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution” in units of “tonnes CO2-equivalent per person per year” (2005-2008 data) is 0.9 (Bangladesh), 0.9 (Pakistan), 2.2 (India), less than 3 (many African and Island countries), 3.2 (the Developing World), 5.5 (China), 6.7 (the World), 11 (Europe), 16 (the Developed World), 27 (the US) and 30 (Australia; or 54 if Australia’s huge Exported CO2 pollution is included).
Top UK climate scientists Dr James Lovelock FRS (Gaia hypothesis) and Professor Kevin Anderson ( Director, Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, University of Manchester, UK) have recently estimated that only about 0.5 billion people will survive this century due to unaddressed, man-made global warming . Noting that the world population is expected to reach 9.5 billion by 2050, these estimates translate to a climate genocide involving deaths of about 10 billion people this century, this including 6 billion under-5 year old infants, 3 billion Muslims in a terminal Muslim Holocaust, 2 billion Indians, 1.3 billion non-Arab Africans, 0.5 billion Bengalis, 0.3 billion Pakistanis and 0.3 billion Bangladeshis. Australia is disproportionately complicit in a worsening climate genocide (“Climate Genocide”).
Australia is world number 1 in coal exports and according to the Australian Government “Australia is a major exporter of liquefied natural gas (LNG), with considerable potential for further development based on its abundant resources of natural gas. Australia is the third largest LNG exporter in the Asia-Pacific region and the fourth largest LNG exporter in the world, exporting 17.9 million tonnes in 2009-10 with a value of around $7.8 billion” (see Australian Government, Department of Energy , Resources and Tourism, “Australian liquefied natural gas”, 2010).
Politically Australia is dominated (18 July 2011 primary vote in parenthesis) by the Liberal-National Party Coalition Opposition (51%), the Australian Labor Party Government (26%) and the Greens (11%) (see “Latest Nielsen Poll”, Nielson, 18 July 2011). The Gillard Labor Government (elected in November 20101) is a Minority Government that rules with the support of 1 Greens MPs and 3 Independents and the next elections are due in 2013.
The Coalition greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution policy is essentially the SAME as that of the Labor Government, specifically “5% off 2000 Domestic GHG pollution by 2020” coupled with unconstrained, unlimited, burgeoning, world-leading coal and liquid natural gas (LNG) Exports. The Coalition has a Direct Action Plan (energy efficiency, incentives for cleaner energy, re-afforestation, and biochar) but must be criticized for doing too little. However it can potentially do a lot more.
In contrast, .the Labor Government has proposed a Carbon Tax-ETS-Ignore Agriculture (CTETSIA) plan involving an indirect, selectively market-based plan to achieve a decrease in GHG pollution. Labor ‘s CTETSIA plan entrenches climate change inaction while dishonestly pretending to do otherwise. Thus Labor’s CTETSIA plan will: promote a disastrous coal to gas transition (that will double power sector-derived GHG pollution because methane leaks at about 3.3% and is 105 times worse than CO2 as a GHG on a 20 year timeframe with aerosol impacts included; see “Planned coal to gas transition will DOUBLE Australian electric power greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution”, Bellaciao, 15 May 2011); scupper science-demanded 100% renewable energy by 2020; institute an empirically ineffective, disastrously counterproductive and utterly fraudulent Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) (Source); and ignore agriculture (yet World Bank experts have recently determined that GHG pollution is 50% bigger than hitherto thought and that livestock alone contribute over 51% 9f the bigger figure; see Robert Goodland and Jeff Anfang. “Livestock and climate change. What if the key actors in climate change are … cows, pigs and chickens?”, World Watch, November/December 2009).
The big functional difference between the Libs and the Labs is that while the Libs can potentially ramp up their Direct Action plan for “5% off 2000 by 2020” , Treasury analysis released by Treasurer Wayne Swan and Climate Minister Greg Combet several weeks ago (“Strong Growth, Low Pollution. Modelling a Carbon Price”) reveals that Labor will certainly NOT achieve “5% off 2000 by 2020” – in 2020 Australia’s annual Domestic GHG pollution will be 679 Mt CO2-e (Business As Usual) or 621 Mt CO2-e (with a Carbon Price) and can only attain the promised “5% off 2000 level by 2020” value of 466 Mt CO2-e by the artifice of purchasing 155 Mt CO2-e of Internationally-sourced abatement credits.
Treasury, ABARE and US EIA data show that Australia will almost DOUBLE its annual Domestic plus Exported GHG pollution in 2020 relative to that in 2000 (1,012 Mt CO2-e pa) to 1,803 Mt CO2-e pa (with a Carbon Price) or 1,861 Mt CO2-e pa (without a Carbon Price) (see “Analysis: Australian Labor Government Carbon Price-ETS scheme fails & entrenches climate change inaction”, Bellaciao).
It gets worse. In 2009 the German Advisory Council on Climate Change (WBGU) determined that for a 75% chance of avoiding a 2 degree C temperature rise, the World must pollute less than 600 Gt CO2 between 2010 and essentially zero emissions in 2050. Unfortunately Australia (through disproportionately huge annual fossil fuel burning and exports) and Belize (through disproportionately huge annual deforestation) have already used up their “share” of this terminal greenhouse gas (GHG) budget – and are now stealing the entitlement of other countries (see “World has 600 Gt CO2 left to pollute before 2050: Australia & Belize have ALREADY used their “fair share””, Bellaciao).
According to the Climate Commission’s report “The Critical Decade”, launched by PM Julia Gillard a month or so ago (Source), for a 75% chance of avoiding a catastrophic 2 degree C temperature rise (EU and Australian policy) the World must emit no more than 1 trillion tonnes of CO2 (1,000 Gt CO2) between 2010 and zero emissions in about 2050. One can readily calculate that Australia’s “fair share” of this terminal carbon pollution budget is 2,750 Mt CO2.
In 2009 Australia’s Domestic plus Exported GHG in Mt CO2-e totaled 600 (Domestic) + 31 (LNG) + 784 (coal) = 1,415 Mt CO2-e per year. Accordingly , at thjs rate of GHG pollution Australia will have 2,750 t CO2 / 1,425 t CO2-e per year = 1.9 years left before ti uses up its “share” of the terminal global GHG pollution “budget” i.e. Australia must get to zero GHG pollution by mid-2012 or roughly when pro-coal, pro-gas Labor introduces its fraudulent dishonest and ineffective Carbon Tax-ETS scheme (Source).
However in 2009 the German Advisory Council on Climate Change (WBGU) determined that for a 75% chance of avoiding a 2 degree C temperature rise, the World must pollute less than 600 Gt CO2 between 2010 and essentially zero emissions in 2050. Unfortunately Australia (through disproportionately huge annual fossil fuel burning and exports) and Belize (through disproportionately huge annual deforestation) have by August 2011 ALREADY used up their “share” of this terminal greenhouse gas (GHG) budget (see “World has 600 Gt CO2 left to pollute before 2050: Australia & Belize have ALREADY used their “fair share”“, Bellaciao).
For a detailed analysis of the worsening Climate Emergency sent to the Australian Government, its advisers and to Australian mainstream media see “Look-the-other-way, climate criminal Australia ignores 25 Elephant in the Room climate change realities“, Bellaciao, 6 July 2011). Yet look-the-other-way, climate criminal Australia simply does not want to know – it wants to exploit and indeed expand exploitation of its huge coal and natural gas reserves until the World makes it stop.
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