Australia records its warmest spring after blazing September, http://www.thebull.com.au/premium/a/42492-australia-records-its-warmest-spring-after-blazing-september.html Blair Trewin Climatologist, National Climate Centre at Australian Bureau of Meteorology. 1 Dec 13,
The spring of 2013 has been Australia’s warmest on record. Mean temperatures for the season were 1.57C above the 1961-1990 average, surpassing the previous record of 1.43C (set in 2006) by 0.14C. Daytime maximum temperatures were also the highest on record, coming in 2.07C above average and 0.24C above the previous record (also set in 2006), while overnight minimum temperatures were the fourth-warmest on record.
The warmth was most dramatic in September, which saw a mean temperature anomaly of +2.75C, setting a new monthly record by more than a degree. October was also a very warm month, 1.43C above average. Temperatures during November were closer to normal, 0.52C above average, but were still warm enough to complete a record spring.
The warmth was extensive, with virtually the entire country experiencing above-average mean temperatures for the spring. It was the warmest spring on record over an area covering most of western Queensland (sufficient to give Queensland its warmest spring on record), and extending into the eastern interior of the Northern Territory.
Records were also set on the west coast around Perth, on the east coast around Sydney, and on parts of the Nullarbor. The spring ranked in the 10 warmest on record over 83% of the country. The record warm spring leaves Australia on track to have its warmest calendar year on record. Mean temperatures for Australia for the 11 months ending in November were 1.23C above average and 0.18C above the previous record year, 2005.AUTHOR
But over the next six months, Abbott intends to trash the very mechanisms that could deliver this increased ambition – the carbon price, the renewable energy target and the Clean Energy Finance Corporation – along with the independent advisory body, the Climate Change Authority, that could possibly counter the advice from his inner circle of mad ideologues to whom the words “climate change”, “green” and “clean energy” are as inflammatory as the names Fairfax and the ABC.
On the international stage, in the climate change arena, Australia’s reputation has been shattered
Australia backing into climate change corner, MacroBusiness, 29 Nov 13, Carbon Economyon November 25, 2013 Cross-posted from Giles Parkinson at Reneweconomy. Tony Abbott has some homework to do. Over the next 15 months he is going to have to figure out how it is that Australia will meet its contribution to a new treaty that aims to limit global warming to 2°C.
He’s not the only one. More than 190 nations associated with the UN climate talks agreed on Saturday on a series of milestones that will hopefully take the world to a meaningful climate agreement in Paris in 2015. As part of that agreement, ministers will meet in June next year, country leaders in September, and by the first quarter of 2015, they will need to lay their targets on the table.
For Abbott this could be quite a challenge. Firstly, Australia, as one of the wealthiest nations in the world, and the biggest emitter per capita of any industrialised nation, will be expected to pull its weight. Read more »
Ai Group warns of flaws in Coalition climate change plan as Warsaw talks wrap up ABC Radio News AM By Lexi Metherell 25 Nov 2013, The Federal Government now has a deadline of early 2015 to set a target for reducing carbon emissions after nearly 200 countries reached a deal at the end of international climate talks in Warsaw.
But a peak industry body says a central part of the Government’s climate change policy will not always work.The Warsaw meeting ended with an agreement on a timetable for nations to name their emissions cuts before another meeting in Paris in December 2015. The Paris meeting aims to produce an international agreement to replace the Kyoto Protocol that will come into place in 2020. The Government is proposing to pay polluters to reduce emissions under its $1.5 billion Emissions Reduction Fund, which it wants up and running in July.
In its submission on the scheme, industry lobby group Australian Industry Group says companies are not always going to be able to deliver as planned. While the Government wants the fund to target domestic emissions, Ai Group is urging it also to include international carbon emissions. Chief executive Innes Willox says the Government should spend a portion of the allocated budget on the reserve of international carbon credits. ”We need to get our emission reductions done at least cost,” he said…….
Australia’s current target is to reduce emissions by 5 per cent by 2020 and the Climate Change Authority is recommending that it be at least 15 per cent.Ai Group says its proposal is a “prudent fallback” in case that target cannot be reached or if the Government wants to go further than 5 per cent.”…..
Federal Environment Minister Greg Hunt was unavailable for interview. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-11-25/business-group-warns-on-climate-policy-as-warsaw-talks-wrap-up/5114192
Australia left exposed on the climate front The Age, November 25, 2013 EDITORIAL So intense has been the focus on axing the ”carbon tax”, for which a repeal bill has passed the lower house, that this seems to have become an end in itself, divorced from the policy goal of averting dangerous climate change. The politics of the issue will dominate for some time, should the Senate block the legislation. Yet once Prime Minister Tony Abbott gets the result he promised – which depends on the new senators who take their seats in July – the policy question of how best to cut greenhouse gas emissions is likely to become ever more pressing. Experts doubt the Coalition’s ”direct action” policy can achieve even the minimum target of a 5 per cent cut from 2000 levels by 2020, especially as Mr Abbott insists funding will not increase to ensure it is reached. Where does that leave Australia if the required target increases?
The difficulty of answering that question may have prompted the government’s decision not to have ministerial representation at the latest UN climate conference in Warsaw. The minister would have faced embarrassment at being so out of step with other nations. This would also have drawn Australians’ attention to the actions economic giants such as the US, China and the European Union are taking to make deeper, earlier cuts to emissions………
Negotiators in Warsaw were dismayed that Australia, which once led the way, ”obstructs the process at every turn”, as one said. Coming from the world’s worst greenhouse gas emitter per person (and 15th in total emissions), this is seen as an act of bad faith. Australia won multiple ”fossil of the day” awards from environment groups at the Warsaw talks…….
In a speech on the conference floor in Warsaw, South African Environmental Affairs Minister Edna Molewa said her country was deeply concerned that Australia and Japan were reducing their climate change commitments. South Africa is part of a powerful negotiating bloc of developing countries, known as BASIC, that includes Brazil, India, and China.
Australia has also been blamed for a brief “walkout” by developing countries including China at a important meeting earlier in the week. The complaints ranged from Australian representatives moving to block any parts of the conference negotiating text to the delegates wearing T-shirts and giggling during the talks.
Australia did not send a minister to the conference, and observers say the delegation of diplomats have been forced to stick to a limited negotiating brief set down by Canberra. That includes not making any new commitments to financially help poor nations deal with climate change – a critical issue at the talks.
Countries have also been concerned about statements by Prime Minister Tony Abbott last week that appeared to narrow conditions under which Australia would adopt a more ambitious 2020 emissions target than the 5 per cent cut currently offered…….http://www.smh.com.au/environment/climate-change/south-africa-adds-voice-to-australia-critics-at-climate-change-talks-20131122-2y0yt.html
Australian delegation’s contemptuous attitude to UN climate talks the ‘last straw’ for developing nations
Developing nations blame Australia for loss and damage talks ‘walkout’ http://www.rtcc.org/2013/11/20/developing-nations-blame-australia-for-loss-and-damage-talks-walkout/ 21 November 2013, Delegation accused of wearing t-shirts and “gorging on snacks” during critical UN talks By Sophie Yeo in Warsaw Australia’s team at UN talks in Warsaw have been accused of lacking respect after delegates turned up to critical discussions wearing shorts and teeshirts.
The Australian delegation turned up in casual attire and “gorged on snacks” during negotiations on whether developed states should make reparations to vulnerable countries as the impacts of climate change become more severe, according to a spokesperson for CAN International.
Their behaviour caused over 130 developing nations to abandon discussions on the controversial issue of climate compensation at 4am last night. Read more »
Marshall Islands hits out at Australia and Japan over carbon target cuts http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-11-21/an-marshalls-climate-minister-lashes-out-at-australia-and-japan/5106838 21 Nov 2013, The Marshall Islands’ Climate Change Minister has lashed out at Australia and Japan for cutting their carbon reduction targets at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Warsaw. Tony de Brum says his country will be one of those that suffers the most from global warming and says Australia and Japan are setting a bad example.
The Australian delegation has already faced criticism from pressure groups for not taking the Warsaw negotiations seriously and attempting to derail the conference…….
Lack of leadership on climate change Australia’s plans to scrap the carbon price has won praise from the Canadian Government, but Mr de Brum has criticised Australia as a rogue nation.
“At a big conference like the UN you might expect one or two rogues to emerge, but never in our wildest dreams did we expect that those rogues might be our own big brother neighbours of Canada, Australia and Japan.” he said…..When the Pacific Rim is responsible for more than its share of world pollution it should be the Pacific countries that take the leadership vision in making sure the rest of the world follows.
“Instead we have Japan, Canada and Australia doing this number on us,” Mr de Brum says he has issued an open invitation to Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop to visit the Marshall Islands to see the impacts of climate change first-hand, but she has not yet set a date for the trip.
BHP in talks with government to help formulate carbon policy
BHP Billiton reveals it is working with Abbott government on the development of carbon policy, and praises Coalition’s ‘direct-action’ policy for protecting companies that compete in the international arena.
Almost two-thirds of global greenhouse gas emissions from industrial sources can be traced to 90 entities, including BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto, a peer-reviewed study has found.
Poor countries walk out of UN climate talks as compensation row rumbles on Bloc of 132 countries exit Warsaw conference after rich nations refuse to discuss climate change recompense until after 2015 John Vidal theguardian.com, Wednesday 20 November 2013 Representatives of most of the world’s poor countries have walked out of increasingly fractious climate negotiations after the EU, Australia, the US and other developed countries insisted that the question of who should pay compensation for extreme climate events be discussed only after 2015……..
Australia was accused of not taking the negotiations seriously. “They wore T-shirts and gorged on snacks throughout the negotiation. That gives some indication of the manner they are behaving in,” said a spokeswoman for Climate Action Network……http://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2013/nov/20/climate-talks-walk-out-compensation-un-warsaw
Australia turns into ‘anti-climate’ force at Warsaw REneweconomy, By Giles Parkinson on 19 November 2013It has taken just 7 days, but already the reputation of Australia as a constructive force in international climate policy has been completely trashed – both in terms of its domestic actions and in the wrecking ball tactics it has sent to Warsaw.
Australia is now seen as an “anti-climate” nation that is actively working against any consensus at these talks, as its domestic policies are translated onto the international stage. Read more »
Tony Abbott rejects Commonwealth climate change risk fund SMH, November 18, 2013 Ben Doherty South Asia correspondent for Fairfax Media Colombo, Sri Lanka: Prime Minister Tony Abbott has rejected a proposal from the 53-nation Commonwealth to establish a new fund to help poor and island countries to combat climate change.
As an extraordinary Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting concluded in Colombo, Mr Abbott joined with Canada in rejecting a decision by the summit to push for a Green Capital Fund to help vulnerable island states and poor African countries address the effects of rising sea levels, prolonged droughts, or catastrophic weather incidents, caused by climate change.
The proposal is for Commonwealth countries to work within the UN climate change network to build the fund for small and poor countries to access.
One of the key themes of the summit was the plight of low-lying, and poor states who are especially vulnerable to climate change, but don’t have the money for adaptation.: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/tony-abbott-rejects-commonwealth-climate-change-risk-fund-20131118-2xplc.html#ixzz2l9bFQGcM
Climate change rallies held around Australia, with calls for Coalition to keep carbon tax (Go to this ABC website to see terrific pictures of the climate cation rallies around Australia) http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-11-17/thousands-rally-across-australia-for-national-day-climate-action/5097536 Tens of thousand of Australians have turned out for climate change rallies across the nation, calling on the Abbott Government to keep the carbon tax. The National Day of Climate Action was organised by activist groups including GetUp!, the Australian Youth Climate Coalition and the Australian Conservation Foundation.
Organisers say about 60,000 participated at the rallies, which were held in capital cities and more than 130 towns and regional centres. Emergency workers played a significant role in warning about the dangers of unchecked global warming, while Labor and Greens politicians, along with climate scientists, also participated.
The Climate Council’s Tim Flannery told 30,000 people in Melbourne that Australians must make their voices heard. ”The simple truth is this: that we cannot leave a matter as important as climate change to the fickleness and whim of Australia’s politicians,” he said.
“We must stand up and be counted [and take] every effort to speed the uptake of renewable energy.” Greens deputy leader Adam Bandt evoked the memory of the 2009 Black Saturday bushfires, while firefighters spoke of their fears of increasingly hotter days.
“There is no sceptic at the end of a fire hose,” said Peter Marshall, secretary of the United Firefighters Union. In Brisbane, where an estimated 4,000 people came together, firefighter Dean McNulty spoke of the huge concern climate change posed to his colleagues, who battle natural disasters from the front line.
Mr McNulty says scientists were clear that global warming would make extreme weather events more frequent and severe. ”To firefighters, it is not just numbers and statistics, it is very real,” he said.
Australia suffers most extreme warming http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2013/s3890466.htm Reporter: Jake Sturmer
The UN’s World Meteorological Agency has found that this year Australia has had the most extreme warming of any country.
Transcrip:t EMMA ALBERICI, PRESENTER: The UN’s World Meteorological Agency has found that climate change is increasing the impact of storms like Typhoon Haiyan. And closer to home, in findings released tonight, the WMO says that Australia this year has experienced the world’s biggest increase in average temperatures. This report from Jake Sturmer. Read more »
Fossil-fuel demand is being stoked by massive subsidies, particularly in the Middle East, with the global total rising $US20 billion ($21.4 billion) in 2012 to $US544 billion. That total will rise to about $US600 billion a year by 2020, Dr Birol said.
By contrast, subsidies for renewable energy rose about $US10 billion in 2012 to $US101 billion, and will reach about $US220 billion by 2035, the agency forecasts. Despite continuing to lag in support at roughly a five-to-one ratio with fossil fuels, renewable energy will account for almost half the increase in power generation to 2035, Dr Birol said.
Climate change: Golden energy age for Australia will cost the world dearly , November 13, 2013 Peter Hannam Environment Editor, The Sydney Morning Herald Surging energy demand in Asia will deliver ”a golden age” for the Australian economy but also set the world on a path of dangerous climate change as fossil fuel-sourced emissions soar, according to the International Energy Agency. Read more »
Abbott puts Australia out of the Hunt on climate change Independent Australia, 8 November 2013, Coalition has signalled its commitment to climate change action by deciding not to send a minister to high level UN talks on the issue for the first time since 1997. Matt McDonald from The Conversation comments.
THIS WEEK, the Australian Government announced that it would not send a minister to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) negotiations in Poland for the first time since 1997. This announcement came on the back of a cancelled stakeholder meeting on Wednesday, traditionally held in advance of UNFCCC Conference of the Parties (CoP) meetings……..
the climate conference snub is one with troubling implications for climate politics and Australian foreign policy generally. Post-election we’ve seen an assault on climate policy, and lingering suspicion over whether Abbott has genuinely put his denialist tendencies behind him. These negotiations provide an opportunity for the government to signal a commitment to action on climate change, both domestically and internationally.
Australia should be sending the message that it is an engaged and proactive member of the international community, concerned with helping to forge global solutions to global problems. Read more »