Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Tony Abbott still a climate change denialist at heart

Abbott-fiddling-global-warmlogo-election-Aust-13the suspicion that the sceptic still lurks within grew stronger with an interview with Michelle Grattan forThe Conversation. People were less anxious about climate change for three reasons, Abbott said:

“First I think they’re more conscious of the fact that the argument among the experts is not quite the one way street that it might have seemed four or five years [ago].”

This election has heard no end of debate about Australia’s budget deficit but little about the environmental deficit that we are accumulating and that will take much longer to pay off.

graph-Climate-Action_vs_Ina

How much will climate inaction cost us? The Drum By Mike Steketee  5 Sep 2013, This election has heard no end of debate about Australia’s budget deficit; meanwhile, an environmental disaster looms that will cause us much more financial pain, writes Mike Steketee.

Victoria and other parts of eastern Australia, including Sydney, have just recorded their warmest winter on record. Was that evidence of climate change, Barrie Cassidy asked Tony Abbott on the ABC’s Insiders on Sunday. “It is evidence of the variability in our weather,” replied the person on the brink of becoming prime minister.

It was an answer at the same time unexceptional and revealing. Of course, Abbott is correct. Weather records are being broken all the time. For centuries Australia has been a land of drought and flooding rains.

But Abbott also could have given a different answer, along the lines that, whether or not specific record-breaking events were the result of human impact on the climate, they were occurring more frequently, particularly those associated with high temperatures, and that this was in line with the predictions of the overwhelming majority of climate scientists.

Here’s another record: for the whole of Australia, temperatures for the 12 months to the end of last month were the highest since reliable records were first kept 103 years ago.

Melbourne University Professor of Climate Science David Karoly concludes from research he conducted with postdoctoral research fellow Sophie Lewis that the probability of this occurring due to natural climate variations alone is extremely low. They add that it is notable that it happened this time under a neutral weather pattern – that is, without an El Nino effect driving up temperatures.

What Abbott did go on to say on Sunday was that he thought climate change was real, that humanity made a contribution and that he favoured strong and effective action against it. So perhaps in his reluctance to link record-breaking temperatures with climate change, he merely was giving comfort to the sizeable rump of global warming doubters in his party.

But the suspicion that the sceptic still lurks within grew stronger with an interview with Michelle Grattan forThe Conversation. People were less anxious about climate change for three reasons, he said:

First I think they’re more conscious of the fact that the argument among the experts is not quite the one way street that it might have seemed four or five years [ago].

The other reasons were that the drought had broken and that there was no international consensus on how to deal with climate change. So, he could have added, we can all relax for a while……….

This election has heard no end of debate about Australia’s budget deficit but little about the environmental deficit that we are accumulating and that will take much longer to pay off.http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-09-05/steketee-how-much-will-climate-inaction-cost-us/4935774

Advertisements

September 6, 2013 - Posted by | election 2013

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: