Mr Rudd, Mr Garnault, et al: “What effect will Australia’s proposed Emissions Cap and Trade (ECT) program have on Climate Change?”
This is what I don’t understand. The media and the Federal Opposition (the Government, too, but I know where it’s coming from) have a duty to point out to the Australian public that any such policy will have no effect on actual temperatures, local or global. Even if you accept the IPCC’s position, surely the only sensible option for Australia would be to prepare itself for future adverse consequences as a result of climate change. By all means agitate for global emission targets and sign on when the major emitters sign on, but to do so before America, China and India commit is utterly futile on a practical level. As a symbolic gesture it remains awfully expensive and counter-productive, serving only to decrease Australia’s ability to cope with the droughts, sea level rises and the fifty thousand other catastrophes we’re headed for. Why is it deemed too complicated for us to say: “To avert climate change, the world needs to reduce carbon emissions. Individual nations, or even larger groups of nations, will only hurt themselves unless the major players also come to the table. We need to sit down and draft these protocols together.”
Personally, of course, I see no need for that to happen, either. But at least it would be a logical counter-measure if you truly believe the IPCC. What K.Rudd plans to do to us has no logic beyond political grandstanding. This is not being made clear enough. The casual observer is being led to believe that somehow an ECT scheme in Australia will avert climate change in Australia, or perhaps contribute a little to global climate stability, when in truth that contribution would be so small you couldn’t measure it.
Anna Bligh, Premier of Queensland and not exactly a conservative role model, at least seems to know where our money comes from: she and her young Treasurer have based their latest big-borrowing budget on the predicted growth our of coal industry. Interesting how she wasn’t savaged by the media over such a policy. It’s unsettling to now know she’s put us into debt on the promise of returned dividends from an industry her Federal counterpart is doing his best to hobble; I fear Queensland will therefore be particularly vulnerable to Rudd’s ECT therapy. And whilst medical ECT treatments may be used (usually as a last resort) for alleviating depression, Rudd’s is more likely to induce it – mentally and economically.
But I could swallow it all if it had the potential to do what it’s designed to do and reduce climate change. But it won’t. And there’s no debate about that. Not one scientist, or even politician, would publicly claim it would without those big nations I’ve mentioned doing the same. I’ll leave the scenario of world-wide carbon reductions for another time. For now, I simply ask once again: “What effect will this have on climate change, Mr Rudd, Mr Garnault, et al?”
(BTW: where do they find these economists?)
UPDATE: maybe they should read this report.