Scientists warn government must aim for faster transition to net zero to save Great Barrier Reef – ABC News #auspol #ClimateCrisis demand #ClimateAction #SDG13 #TellTheTruth #IPCCReport #CoralNotCoal

Marine scientists say they hope a new-look parliament will lead to more ambitious climate targets amid more frequent coral bleaching events.

By Christopher Testa

Marine scientists say more ambitious climate targets will be needed to save the Great Barrier Reef.

Marine scientists say Australia’s carbon emission reduction targets must accelerate under the nation’s new-look parliament if the Great Barrier Reef is to be saved.

Federal Labor has remained firm on its existing target of a 43 per cent reduction in emissions by 2030 and an aim of achieving net zero by 2050.

The government may secure a majority in the lower house but is likely to need support from the Greens and potentially former Wallaby David Pocock to pass contentious legislation in the Senate.

Selina Ward, a senior lecturer at the University of Queensland and academic director of Heron Island Research Station, said the election result left her “really hopeful and optimistic”.

However, the expert in coral reproduction and recruitment has warned coral reefs’ ability to recover from events like bleaching and cyclones depends on them having time to do so.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese visited Fitzroy Island to outline Labor’s Great Barrier Reef policy during the federal election campaign.(ABC News: Ian Cutmore)none

“What has us most worried at the moment is we keep having these events close together,” Dr Ward said.

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority’s recently published annual snapshot this month confirmed the reef experienced its fourth mass bleaching event in seven years.

It was the first to occur under typically cooler and darker La Niña conditions.

Coral reefs can recover from bleaching events but are less effective at doing so when it occurs frequently.(Supplied: Ruby Holmes, One Tree Island Sydney University Research Station)none

Restoration alone not enough

The new government has promised to spend an extra $194 million over four years to improve the reef’s water quality, reduce plastic pollution and limit nutrient run-off, along with more restoration work.

“Those things are, of course, important, but without strong climate change action, they won’t save the reef by themselves,” Dr Ward said.

Lissa Schindler from the Australian Marine Conservation Society said the government’s existing emissions reduction target was in line with a 2C warming scenario under which “we will lose 99 per cent of coral reefs”.

“What science is telling us is we need 75 per cent by 2030 to limit warming to 1.5C [degrees],” Dr Schindler said.

The incoming government may need the support of the Greens to pass legislation, Greens leader Adam Bandt is pictured with new Senator Penny Allman-Payne.(ABC News: Chris Gillette)none

Dr Schindler said to achieve more ambitious targets the government would need to help regional communities reliant on thermal coal exports transition to more secure industries.

While Labor failed to win any seats from the Coalition in north and central Queensland, there were swings in all but one of those electorates.

Both Dr Ward and Dr Schindler said the results showed Australians increasingly understood climate risks.

RE: updated version of draft aerial survey text [SEC=OFFICIAL]

Read on http://www.abc.net.au/news/2022-05-25/great-barrier-reef-future-relies-on-ambitious-climate-targets/101094686

Humanity’s 21st century challenge is to meet the needs of all within the means of the planet.

In other words, to ensure that no one falls short on life’s essentials (from food and housing to healthcare and political voice), while ensuring that collectively we do not overshoot our pressure on Earth’s life-supporting systems, on which we fundamentally depend – such as a stable climate, fertile soils, and a protective ozone layer.

The Doughnut of social and planetary boundaries is a playfully serious approach to framing that challenge.

Doughnut Economics

Bright Green Lies systematically debunks many of the lies and distortions that characterize the discourse of those who argue that ‘technology will stop global warming’ or that ‘technology will save the planet.

Almost every major centrist/progressive institution in the United States, from 350.org to Greenpeace to Democracy Now to the Democratic Party seems committed to powering the industrial economy with ‘renewable’ energy. And we hear all the time that ‘solar power will save the planet.’ But a) will ‘renewables’ actually power the economy? and b) are ‘renewables’ good for the planet? 

The answer in both cases is no. In fact, the answer is worse than no, in that because of these bright green lies much of the environmental movement has been transformed from being about saving wild places and wild nature into being about powering the industrial economy. These bright green lies have turned much of the environmental movement into a lobbying arm for a sector of the industrial economy, such that you can have 100,000 people marching on the streets of Washington, D.C., and if you ask them why they’re marching, they’ll say, ‘To save the planet,’ but if you ask them for their demands, they’ll say, ‘Subsidies for the solar industry.’ There has never been another social movement so completely coopted. 

Bright Green Lies systematically debunks many of the lies and distortions that characterise the discourse of those who argue that ‘technology will stop global warming’ or that ‘technology will save the planet.’ The book has a chapter devoted to debunking claims that each of following will individually or collectively power this culture sustainably, or help the planet: solar power, wind power, recycling, ‘efficiency, ‘ batteries and other forms of energy storage, changes in the electrical grid, and hydropower. We also provide our own solutions, and more importantly, a way of looking at these problems that centers the health of the planet. 

Bright Green Lies

Labor, Greens look set to push businesses to adopt tougher emission targets – ABC News #ClimateCrisis demand #ClimateAction #SDG13 #TellTheTruth #IPCCReport #auspol #FundOurFutureNotGas #CoralNotCoal #BrightGreenLies

The future of Australia’s biggest emitters looks uncertain under the new Labor government, with the Greens and climate change-focused independents set for a loud voice.

Companies, from airlines to miners, say they are already a step ahead on carbon reduction, but many of their targets are below what will be implemented under Labor.

The question now is: How far can industry be pushed, especially if the Greens end up with a balance of power?

Labor went to the election with a pledge to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 43 per cent within just eight years.

Many companies already have their own 2030 targets, including the major airline Qantas.

The ASX-listed company’s target is a 25 per cent reduction in net emissions by 2030, which is below Labor’s pledge and even further below the 75 per cent target the Greens will push for.

“We need to make sure that we’re moving at a pace that allows us to keep that important part of travel and keeps that investment in the country,” Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said in response to questions from ABC News.

Qantas’ competitor Virgin has a lower 2030 target: A 15 per cent net reduction in carbon emissions.

Virgin chief executive Jayne Hrdlicka is yet to commit to higher targets but has said the airline will work with the new government.

Ms Hrdlicka says more investment in sustainable fuel industries in Australia can help business hit higher targets.

“We look forward to conversations with them [the Labor government] about sustainable aviation fuels and the opportunity to make a very profound difference with respect to the environment, and we expect those conversations will start in earnest next week,” she said.

Coal and gas projects were already risky before Labor

Outside of air travel, Labor’s win has major ramifications for the gas and coal industry.

That industry was already grappling with its future viability.

Sustainable energy such as solar power has already gained prominence and carbon-intensive energy is becoming less profitable.

Just a few months ago, Origin Energy sought approval to shut down Australia’s largest coal-fired power plant seven years early.

Rio Tinto has been selling its coal mines and is unlikely to approve new ones, while BHP has also committed to an exit and has a 30 per cent carbon reduction goal for 2030.

The big four banks have publicly committed to stop financing coal by 2030 or 2035, although critics argue they still invest each billions in fossil fuels such as gas.

Labor also wants to impose emissions limits on the 215 most polluting facilities.

The details are yet to be determined, but it could involve changing the current “safeguard mechanism” introduced by the Abbott government in 2016.

This mechanism covers Australia’s biggest carbon polluters, which emit more than 100,000 tonnes in carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2-e) covered emissions in a financial year.

It impacts businesses across a broad range of industry sectors, including electricity generation, mining, oil and gas extraction, manufacturing, transport, and waste.

Under the mechanism, these businesses must ensure the facility’s net emissions do not exceed the baseline determined by the Clean Energy Regulator. There have been suggestions that Labor may increase that baseline.

The Climate Council’s report ‘The Lost Years: Counting the Costs of Climate Inaction in Australia’ found that the Federal Liberal-National Government has overwhelmingly failed on climate action over its three terms of government. 

As Climate Council CEO Amanda McKenzie says “The record is clear, in eight years, the Federal Government’s decisions have exacerbated the climate crisis and they have tried to cover up their policy failings. Australians have lost almost a decade of what should’ve been our moment to take strong and bold action on climate.” 

We call on all parties to get emissions plummeting THIS DECADE. There’s no more time to waste.

The Lost Years

Industry group says companies ‘could trip over’ if targets rushed

A lobby group that represents manufacturers is urging the new government to set workable time lines.

Ai Group’s head of climate, energy and environment policy, Tennant Reed, says most businesses are committed to net zero emissions by 2050 or well before.

RE: updated version of draft aerial survey text [SEC=OFFICIAL]

“If we impose such high costs on local businesses that are uneven relative to those their competitors face that they lose market share or lose profitability, we’re going to have some problems.”

He says the safeguard mechanism for industry is a more effective way of meeting climate commitments without sending businesses into ruin.

“I don’t think anybody argues that we can get to 100 per cent reductions overnight,” he said.

Emma Herd, the head of climate change and sustainability for consultancy firm EY, says the make-up of the new parliament will usher in a new debate on climate targets for 2035.

“Up until now, you really had industry voluntarily taking a lot of action around reducing their emissions.

“The review and the tightening of the safeguard mechanism is going to bring around that compliance driver and really begin to push industry to reduce their emissions at a much more rapid rate.”

She says there is no doubt the debate will now centre around how businesses increase their targets.

How the Greens could push Labor to set more ambitious climate targets

How far the new government will go on carbon reduction will depend on how big a voice the climate-focused Greens and independents end up with in the new parliament.

Labor could just grasp a majority government in the lower house

However things look more uncertain in the Senate where Labor is not projected to hold a majority.

If Labor does not have the Coalition’s support, the Greens’ support will be mandatory for any legislation it wants to pass through the Senate. Tasmanian senator Jacqui Lambie will find she has a greater voice too.

If the Greens hold the balance of power in the Senate, it will give them leeway to negotiate stronger emissions reductions targets as well as push Labor to phase out about 114 coal and gas projects that are currently in the pipeline.

“The Greens will have balance of power in the Senate, potentially in our own right, and the government can’t take our votes for granted,” Greens leader Adam Bandt told the ABC.

Adam Bandt wants stronger emission reduction targets, and says the Greens will push Labor on the matter.(AAP: Russell Freeman)none

“This election delivered us a mandate to act on climate. The Greens want to sit down with the government and work out a plan to pass climate legislation, but that should include a freeze on new coal and gas projects.

Mr Bandt identified new gas projects, including Scarborough in Western Australia and Beetaloo in the Northern Territory, as those they would push back against.

Apart from the Greens, there are now also the “teal” independents, who campaigned heavily on climate change action in the lead-up to the election.

Independent candidate Monique Ryan, who took the seat of Kooyong from former treasurer Josh Frydenberg, has described Labor’s 43 per cent target as “manifestly inadequate”.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says global emissions must be halved by 2030 to have any hope of limiting global warming to, or close to, 1.5 degrees Celsius.

Labor has an emissions reduction goal of 43 per cent by 2030, which is less than the 45 per cent cut promised ahead of the last election. This goal, if replicated in other countries, is consistent with 2C of warming globally.

The Greens’ more ambitious 2030 target of 75 per cent and net zero by 2035 is consistent with keeping warming within 1.5C.

The new Labor government has been contacted for comment on how far it will go on its targets and when it expects to start implementing them. 

Climate-friendly policies to help renewable energy sector

While some companies may be nervous about being pushed further on their emissions reductions targets, the renewable energy industry is excited.

It sees Labor’s win as likely to speed up the transition to battery storage.

“If they get more ambitious, we would be delighted,” says Brian Craighead, founder of Energy Renaissance, which manufactures lithium batteries for commercial and industrial use.

Mr Craighead has welcomed Labor’s targets but wants further action.

Mr Craighead says business is booming off the back of a greater appetite for renewables, with some pf his company’s big customers working in farming, defence and transportation. 

“Demand is through the roof. We’re seeing more and more folks, large companies asking for batteries as quickly as they can. This election is only going to accelerate that.”

Natural Solar chief executive Chris Williams says the next decade is an exciting one for the renewable energy space.

“The future of renewable energy, particularly in Australia, on the back of this election result is very promising,” he said.

Humanity’s 21st century challenge is to meet the needs of all within the means of the planet.

In other words, to ensure that no one falls short on life’s essentials (from food and housing to healthcare and political voice), while ensuring that collectively we do not overshoot our pressure on Earth’s life-supporting systems, on which we fundamentally depend – such as a stable climate, fertile soils, and a protective ozone layer.

The Doughnut of social and planetary boundaries is a playfully serious approach to framing that challenge, and it acts as a compass for human progress this century.

Doughnut Economics

The company installs household batteries to store solar energy. Currently 3 million households in Australia have solar but far fewer of them have batteries to store the power and use it any time

Mr Williams says the company has had a spike in battery sales since the election result.

“We’ve seen an uptick today compared to Monday of last week at around about 25 per cent,” he said.

More than 100 Australian startups have also signed a campaign to draw attention to the need for stronger action on climate change.

One of them is Australian non-alcoholic beer company Heaps Normal. Its co-founder and chief executive Andy Miller says Australian businesses have done a lot of heavy lifting on climate change, and the government needs to act fast.

“We need our Government to step up to the plate.”

— Read on www.abc.net.au/news/2022-05-25/labor-greens-set-to-push-businesses-on-emission-reduction-target/101094606

Bright Green Lies systematically debunks many of the lies and distortions that characterize the discourse of those who argue that ‘technology will stop global warming’ or that ‘technology will save the planet.

Almost every major centrist/progressive institution in the United States, from 350.org to Greenpeace to Democracy Now to the Democratic Party seems committed to powering the industrial economy with ‘renewable’ energy. And we hear all the time that ‘solar power will save the planet.’ But a) will ‘renewables’ actually power the economy? and b) are ‘renewables’ good for the planet? 

The answer in both cases is no. In fact, the answer is worse than no, in that because of these bright green lies much of the environmental movement has been transformed from being about saving wild places and wild nature into being about powering the industrial economy. These bright green lies have turned much of the environmental movement into a lobbying arm for a sector of the industrial economy, such that you can have 100,000 people marching on the streets of Washington, D.C., and if you ask them why they’re marching, they’ll say, ‘To save the planet,’ but if you ask them for their demands, they’ll say, ‘Subsidies for the solar industry.’ There has never been another social movement so completely coopted. 

Bright Green Lies


Minerals and Materials Blindness

Climate Change made devastating early heat in India and Pakistan 30 times more likely – World Weather Attribution #auspol demand #ClimateAction #SDG13 #TellTheTruth #IPCCReport #ClimateCrisis #EcologicalCrisis #QUAD

Climate Change made devastating early heat in India and Pakistan 30 times more likely – World Weather Attribution

Since the beginning of March, India and Pakistan and large parts of South Asia experienced prolonged heat, that at the time of writing, May 2022, still hasn’t subsided.

March was the hottest in India since records began 122 years ago and in Pakistan, the highest worldwide positive temperature anomaly during March was recorded and many individual weather stations recorded monthly all-time highs through March. At the same time, March was extremely dry, with 62 percent less than normal rainfall reported over Pakistan and 71 percent below normal over India, making the conditions favourable for local heating from the land surface. The heatwave continued over the month of April and reached its preliminary peak towards the end of the month. By the 29th of April, 70 percent of India was affected by the heatwave.

While heatwaves are not uncommon in the season preceding the monsoon, the very high temperatures so early in the year coupled with much less than average rain have led to extreme heat conditions with devastating consequences for public health and agriculture. The full health and economic fallout, and cascading effects from the current heat wave will however take months to determine, including the number of excess deaths, hospitalisations, lost wages, missed school days, and diminished working hours. Early reports indicate 90 deaths in India and Pakistan, and an estimated 10-35 percent reduction in crop yields in Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, and Punjab due to the heatwave.

The early and prolonged heat particularly affected the North West of India and Southern parts of Pakistan, the so-called bread basket of the subcontinent. Towards the end of April and in May the heatwave also reached more coastal areas and the Eastern parts of India. It was however the early, prolonged and dry heat that made this event stand out as distinct from heatwaves occurring earlier this century.

Scientists from India, Pakistan, the Netherlands, France, Switzerland, New Zealand, Denmark, United States of America and the United Kingdom, collaborated to assess to what extent human-induced climate change altered the likelihood and intensity of the heatwave.

Using published peer-reviewed methods, we analysed how human-induced climate change affected the heat in the early affected region (see fig. 1) that also experienced a lot less rain than usual. To capture the duration of the event we chose the March-April average of daily maximum temperatures.

Figure  1: (a) March-April average daily maximum temperature for the year 2022 as observed in the CPC dataset. The study region is highlighted by the green polygon. (b) same as (a) for anomalies w.rt. 1979-2022.

Main findings

  • The 2022 heatwave is estimated to have led to at least 90 deaths across India and Pakistan, and to have triggered an extreme Glacial Lake Outburst Flood in northern Pakistan and forest fires in India. The heat reduced India’s wheat crop yields, causing the government to reverse an earlier plan to supplement the global wheat supply that has been impacted by the war in Ukraine. In India, a shortage of coal led to power outages that limited access to cooling, compounding health impacts and forcing millions of people to use coping mechanisms such as limiting activity to the early morning and evening.
  • Gridded observations that correspond well to station data and capture India and Pakistan are comparably short (starting 1979). The exact return period of such a rare event is thus highly uncertain and depends on the length of the data as well as the fitted distribution. When combining information of the shorter dataset with a dataset that only covers India but for a longer time span (starting 1951) we estimate the return period to be around 100 years in today’s climate of 1.2C global warming. We thus use 1 in 100 years, as the event definition for the attribution study.
  • To increase the data available and determine the role of climate change in the observed changes we combine observations with 20 climate models and we conclude that human-caused climate change made this heatwave hotter and more likely.
  • Because of climate change, the probability of an event such as that in 2022 has increased by a factor of about 30.
  • The same event would have been about 1C cooler in a preindustrial climate.
  • With future global warming, heatwaves like this will become even more common and hotter. At the global mean temperature scenario of +2C such a heatwave would become an additional factor of 2-20 more likely and 0.5-1.5C hotter compared to 2022.
  • We note here that our results are likely conservative; the relatively short lengths of observed data rendered it difficult to consider statistical fits that are more ideal for extremes. In large model ensembles more accurate fits indicate a larger increase in likelihood.
  • It is important to note that this early heatwave was accompanied by much below average rainfall and humidity and thus constituted a dry heatwave, rendering humidity much less important for health impacts than heatwaves occurring late in the season and in coastal areas.
  • In Pakistan and India, extreme heat hits hardest for people who must go outside to earn a daily wage (e.g. street vendors, construction and farm workers, traffic police), and consequently lack access to consistent electricity and cooling at home, limiting their options to cope with prolonged heat stress.
  • Rising temperatures from more intense and frequent heat waves will render coping mechanisms inadequate as conditions in some regions meet and exceed limits to human survivability. Mitigating further warming is essential to avoid loss of life and livelihood.
  • While some losses will inevitably occur due to the extreme heat, it is misleading to assume that the impacts are inevitable. Adaptation to extreme heat can be effective at reducing mortality. Heat Action Plans that include early warning and early action, awareness raising and behaviour changing messaging, and supportive public services can reduce mortality, and India’s rollout of these has been remarkable, now covering 130 cities and towns.

— Read on www.worldweatherattribution.org/climate-change-made-devastating-early-heat-in-india-and-pakistan-30-times-more-likely/

Humanity’s 21st century challenge is to meet the needs of all within the means of the planet.

In other words, to ensure that no one falls short on life’s essentials (from food and housing to healthcare and political voice), while ensuring that collectively we do not overshoot our pressure on Earth’s life-supporting systems, on which we fundamentally depend – such as a stable climate, fertile soils, and a protective ozone layer.

The Doughnut of social and planetary boundaries is a playfully serious approach to framing that challenge, and it acts as a compass for human progress this century.

Doughnut Economics

Almost every major centrist/progressive institution in the United States, from 350.org to Greenpeace to Democracy Now to the Democratic Party seems committed to powering the industrial economy with ‘renewable’ energy. And we hear all the time that ‘solar power will save the planet.’ But a) will ‘renewables’ actually power the economy? and b) are ‘renewables’ good for the planet?

The answer in both cases is no.

In fact, the answer is worse than no, in that because of these bright green lies much of the environmental movement has been transformed from being about saving wild places and wild nature into being about powering the industrial economy. These bright green lies have turned much of the environmental movement into a lobbying arm for a sector of the industrial economy, such that you can have 100,000 people marching on the streets of Washington, D.C., and if you ask them why they’re marching, they’ll say, ‘To save the planet,” but if you ask them for their demands, they’ll say, “Subsidies for the solar industry.” There has never been another social movement so completely coopted.

Bright Green Lies systematically debunks many of the lies and distortions that characterize the discourse of those who argue that ‘technology will stop global warming’ or that ‘technology will save the planet.’ The book has a chapter devoted to debunking claims that each of following will individually or collectively power this culture sustainably; or help the planet: solar power, wind power, recycling, ‘efficiency, ‘ batteries and other forms of energy storage, changes in the electrical grid, and hydropower. We also provide our own solutions, and more importantly, a way of looking at these problems that centers the health of the planet.

Bright Green Lies

UN calls for renewable energy push following damning climate report | News | DW | 18.05.2022 #auspol It’s time for #ClimateAction #SDG13 #TellTheTruth #IPCCReport

UN calls for renewable energy push following damning climate report

UN chief Antonio Guterres has called for more investment in renewable energy and an end to the millions of dollars in subsidies for fossil fuels, as a new report shows several climate indicators broke troubling records.

Australia’s new Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has a huge job ahead to catch up the lost years of Liberal National Government.

The Climate Council’s report ‘The Lost Years: Counting the Costs of Climate Inaction in Australia’ has found that the Federal Liberal-National Government had overwhelmingly failed on climate action over its three terms of government. 

As Climate Council CEO Amanda McKenzie says “The record is clear, in eight years, the Federal Government’s decisions have exacerbated the climate crisis and they have tried to cover up their policy failings. Australians have lost almost a decade of what should’ve been our moment to take strong and bold action on climate.” 

We call on all parties to get emissions plummeting THIS DECADE. There’s no more time to waste.

The Lost Years

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres released a five-point plan on Wednesday aimed at boosting investments in renewable energies. His message coincided with the publication of the World Meteorological Organization’s Climate Report for 2021.

“We must end fossil fuel pollution and accelerate the renewable energy transition before we incinerate our only home,” the UN chief said in his pre-recorded message. “Time is running out.”

WMO report shows ‘failure’ to stop climate disruption

Wednesday’s report showed that critical climate indicators all broke records last year. These include greenhouse gas concentrations and rising sea levels. The last seven years were also the hottest on record.

“Today’s State of the Climate report is a dismal litany of humanity’s failure to tackle climate disruption,” Guterres said.

Petteri Taalas, the secretary-general of the WMO, told DW that mitigating climate change is “much cheaper” than dealing with its consequences. 

“It’s even up to 20 times more expensive if we let climate change happen and we are not able to mitigate it,” Taalas said. 

“It’s also financially viable to pay attention to climate mitigation and start using these climate-friendly means to produce energy in the transport sector and also other sectors that we are dealing with,” he added.

What is Guterres’ five-point plan?

The UN plan focuses on increasing the spread of renewable technologies, along with greater investments, as well as ending subsidies for fossil fuels.

Guterres called for public and private investments in renewables to be tripled to at least $4 trillion a year.

Clean and cheap: Solar’s winning formula

The plan would also require governments to lift intellectual property protections on renewable technologies to increase access to them, as well as to open up supply chains of materials necessary for such technology which are currently controlled by just a few key players.

Guterres also pleaded with governments to end subsidies for fossil fuels that currently amount to half a trillion dollars per year, while also promoting renewable energies. He said fossil fuel companies were getting rich while consumers were paying the price.

While people suffer from high prices at the pump, the oil and gas industry is raking in billions from a distorted market,” he said.

Taalas said energy systems needed to be made dependent on renewable and nuclear energy. 

“We have to convert our transport system to be more based on electric vehicles, public transportation and perhaps hydrogen in the future,” he added. 

Trajectories not on target

Even though renewable energies are expected to source most of the growing electricity demands in the coming years, the rate of growth is nowhere near fast enough to keep global temperatures below the 1.5 degrees Celsius increase over pre-industrial levels as outlined in the Paris Agreement.

Renewables currently provide just 30% of global electricity generation, with fossil fuel energies still dominating.

Guterres pointed to red tape as one of the key obstacles to the growth of renewable energies, as well as subsidies that end up promoting fossil fuels.

“In Europe, it takes eight years for a wind project to be approved,” he said. “In the United States, I understand that it can take as much as a decade at the federal level alone, where one needs to go through about 28 federal agencies.”

“Every minute of every day, coal, oil and gas receive roughly $11 million in subsidies,” he added.


— Read on www.dw.com/en/un-calls-for-renewable-energy-push-following-damning-climate-report/a-61837833

Climate Dominoes

Minerals and Materials Blindness

It’s time. Time for Labor and the Greens to say yes to love – Michael West #auspol #ausvotes #ClimateCrisis demand #ClimateAction #SDG13 United we stand, divided we fall. #TellTheTruth #IPCCReport

It’s time. Time for Labor and the Greens to say yes to love – Michael West

By

Anthony Albanese Australia’s new Prime Minister speaking in Cairns

Labor has won a working parliamentary majority in a sullen, angry country. Perhaps more by pure luck than design, Australia has avoided a hung parliament.

That’s the good news. But for this Labor government to do us proud, it will have to do something humble.

Call the Greens into its fold. There is no alternative in the long term, writes Mark Sawyer.

Adam Bandt leader of the Greens

”The Australian people have voted for change,” said Anthony Albanese. ”The Australian people have voted for hope,” said Penny Wong. They certainly didn’t vote for Labor, at least not in a sustainable way. 

That’s why it’s time for Labor to do a deal with the Greens in the interests of giving Australians a sustained progressive government.

Why the Greens and not the Teals, who will have more MPs than the Greens? The Teals, enlightened people that they are, represent Australia’s one percenters.

Remember that concept?

The global financial crisis gave us that term. Even if the GFC ended, the one percenters didn’t go away. The Teals represent those people. Of the 10 most expensive suburbs in Australia, the Teals represent nine. Only Killara sits outside, being in the Liberal seat of Bradfield, and that might go Teal next time. 

The Teals represent every Sydney beach suburb north of the Harbour Bridge, every harbour inlet to its east. And their Melbourne and possibly Perth acquisitions aren’t exactly Struggle Street. Their patron saints, Simon Holmes a Court and Malcolm Turnbull, are multimillionaires. Yes we have only one planet, but the Teals’ people have more than one world. Worlds that include Aspen, Gstaad, long-term rentals in London or Manhattan.

The Teals are not the natural partners of a prime minister who grew up in public housing with a single mother on a disability pension, who dedicated his victory to her and people living on public housing today.

For those who believe Labor doesn’t need to do a deal now that Team Albo has burst through the paper like an Aussie Rules footballer, look at the party’s primary vote. To win an election on 32.84% is not a triumph, it’s a warning. Labor needs to heed it. The alternative is Labor being harried from the left, making Albanese a backseat driver in his own government, and Labor’s primary vote sporting a 2 in front of it in 2025.

Labor hasn’t topped 40% in 10 elections, except for the Kevin 07 frenzy, and therefore has lost its claim to speak for half the nation plus one. The Coalition has lost that too, but now they are going into opposition, they can stew on that problem themselves. Labor has to set up a government with a bit more staying power than its last show.

Time to stop being a party of protest, and act their age 

As a national party, the Greens are 30 years old. in 2022. And electorally, the Greens have come of age. A nationwide vote of 11.88%, House seats in two states, and impressive gains in the Senate gives them legitimacy like never before.

The Greens are often foolish and mulish. They voted against Labor’s first attempt to put a tax on emissions. But they are Labor’s natural long-term allies. A lot of them left Labor when the party fell in behind the Coalition on the Iraq War and refugees. It’s time to gather them in and set Australia on a path for a durable progressive government. And they have youth and vigour.

An alliance with the Greens now, while the Liberals are flat on their backs, would seal government for three terms and perhaps more. Scare campaigns from the right about the Greens would have no traction. 

The Greens could be given a special role in Queensland, the Coalition’s last redoubt. Incredibly, the Green primary vote in Queensland (12.98%) is almost half of Labor (27.89). The Greens could be made ambassadors for the energy transition in Australia’s north.

Labor will be dealing with the Greens anyway, so it’s time to give them seats at the table. The Greens could be given certain portfolios and made to own the failures as well as successes. Make them work the health budget and get dental care into Medicare. Make them work with the states to build affordable housing. The Greens have some great ideas. Make them walk their talk. Make them a party of government, not protest.

The Greens would have to make some concessions, a skill they sometimes keep hidden under a bushel. They would have to fall in behind Labor on national security. They would have to work with Labor to develop a fair and orderly refugee campaign, and persuade the nation of their arguments from within the governing tent.

 The Greens have won the support of one in eight Australians. That has to be respected. But the other seven Australians matter too. 

Keeping the Teals at arm’s length

An alliance with the Greens would have plenty of benefits, but some risks. It would allow Labor to keep the Teals at arm’s length. That would certainly infuriate the best-connected people in Australia. These are people who don’t hear the word ‘’no’’ very often. They are not used to being left out of the starting XV.  But they have never been Labor’s people.

They are our best educated, the healthiest, the highest achievers, at the pinnacles of medicine, education, academia, architecture, engineering, design, media and law. They are the celebrities, the award winners, the influencers, the tech millionaires, the media personalities, the beautiful people. The funds managers and other money shufflers. The highest priced accountants for the best tax minimisers. The corporate litigators who crush small business rivals with their thumbs. The people with the microphone, the Insta following. The people who can volunteer for a glamorous cause because they don’t have to scrape a living. Their Deliveroos and Ubers come from outside.

Not long ago, the Teal electorates were sending the likes of Tony Abbott and Bronwyn Bishop to Canberra. They are not Labor’s people.

Labor can get with the strength

If Albanese is to stay true to the public housing block he told us so much about, and the mother who raised him on a disability pension, he has to ensure Labor runs a government built on half the nation, not a third. The Greens and Labor won 44.9% of the primary vote on Saturday. That’s a mandate. The people of Warringah, Wentworth, Mackellar, North Sydney, Kooyong, Goldstein and Curtin have never voted Labor, although the last one is named for a Labor PM.

And while the growth of the Teals has been spectacular, it can’t last without changing its shape. In 2025 there may be another harvest of four or five seats. After that, Australia’s little bits of paradise become harder to locate.

Meanwhile the Liberals should forget Peter Dutton and go bold. A female leader would be ideal, but there is no obvious standout. If Andrew Constance wins in Gilmore, he will have taken a rare seat back from Labor for the Liberal Party. That makes him leadership material. That’s the start of a journey back to relevance.

Albanese will have a small majority. Smart leaders govern as if they wield a huge majority anyway. But Labor can’t be credible at its current level of support. Labor and the Greens need to stop being the best of frenemies. Anthony and Adam, it’s time to make it legal.

— Read on michaelwest.com.au/its-time-time-for-labor-and-the-greens-to-say-yes-to-love/

Economics is broken. It has failed to predict, let alone prevent, financial crises that have shaken the foundations of our societies. Its outdated theories have permitted a world in which extreme poverty persists while the wealth of the super-rich grows year on year. And its blind spots have led to policies that are degrading the living world on a scale that threatens all of our futures. 

Can it be fixed?

In Doughnut Economics, Oxford academic Kate Raworth identifies seven critical ways in which mainstream economics has led us astray, and sets out a roadmap for bringing humanity into a sweet spot that meets the needs of all within the means of the planet. En route, she deconstructs the character of ‘rational economic man’ and explains what really makes us tick. She reveals how an obsession with equilibrium has left economists helpless when facing the boom and bust of the real-world economy. She highlights the dangers of ignoring the role of energy and nature’s resources – and the far-reaching implications for economic growth when we take them into account. And in the process, she creates a new, cutting-edge economic model that is fit for the 21st century – one in which a doughnut-shaped compass points the way to human progress. 

Ambitious, radical and rigorously argued, Doughnut Economics promises to reframe and redraw the future of economics for a new generation.

Doughnut Economics

The Southwest’s Drought and Fires Are a Window to Our Climate Change Future — ProPublica #ClimateCrisis #TellTheTruth demand #ClimateAction #SDG13 #IPCCReport #auspol #ausvotes

In a Q&A with ProPublica, experts describe how a new climate reality threatens the Southwest, the fastest-growing region in the U.S.

By

Lake Mead National Recreation Area in Nevada. Two corpses were discovered in early May in Lake Mead, as water levels fell to their lowest point since the reservoir was filled in the 1930s. Ethan Miller/Getty Images

ProPublica is a nonprofit newsroom that investigates abuses of power. Sign up for Dispatches, a newsletter that spotlights wrongdoing around the country, to receive our stories in your inbox every week.

The concentration of carbon dioxide in Earth’s atmosphere has reached its highest level in recorded human history. Again.

In April, the level of CO2 was 27% higher than it was 50 years ago, according to the latest data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. (Methane, a gas with about 85 times the near-term warming effect of CO2, has risen more than 16% since 1984, the first full year that NOAA collected data.)

Each spring, going back decades, we have surpassed the previous year’s CO2 record, as humans continue burning hydrocarbons at breathtaking rates, releasing greenhouse gasses. That impacts temperatures, precipitation, the intensity of storms and other weather patterns.

Across the American Southwest, this has amplified record droughts and fires.

Climate change is exposing where the bodies are buried, literally. Boaters and paddle boarders discovered two corpses in early May in Lake Mead, as water levels fell to their lowest point since the reservoir was filled in the 1930s. Lake Powell has also dropped to its lowest point since being filled. The ongoing drought appears to be the worst in 1,200 years, according to research recently published in the journal Nature Climate Change. Around the region, there have been hotter temperatures, smaller snowpack and an earlier start to the fire season. Wildfires have already torched more than 300,000 acres near Santa Fe in northern New Mexico this year.

This new reality threatens the Southwest, the fastest-growing region in the U.S., and the 40 million people who rely on the Colorado River, while offering a glimpse at what climate change will bring there and elsewhere.

“This happens to be one of those years when we can look out the window and look at the future as the smoke pall floats overhead,” said David Gutzler, a professor emeritus who researches climatology and meteorology at the University of New Mexico’s Earth and Planetary Sciences department.

To better understand how climate change is and will continue to affect the Southwest, ProPublica spoke to three experts: Gutzler; Mikhail Chester, a professor in Arizona State University’s engineering school and the director of the Metis Center for Infrastructure and Sustainable Engineering; and Gregg Garfin, a climatologist at the University of Arizona and co-lead author of the Southwest chapter in the Fourth National Climate Assessment.

The conversations have been edited for length and clarity.

Wildfires are burning near Santa Fe, while the Boulder, Colorado, area is still reeling from a fire that burned a developed area in the dead of winter. What are the connections between a changing climate and wildfires?

Gutzler: We make the extremes worse. That’s a bit different than saying a wildfire is caused by climate change. As temperatures rise, hot temperature-related extreme events are likely to become more frequent and more severe, and that’s exactly what we’re seeing across the West right now.

Garfin: There are also parts of the region where there’s a link between fire severity and climate change. The way that plays out is that climate change affects the hydrology, so it leads to a shorter snow-cover season, less snow-covered area, soils that are desiccated, and then temperature also puts stress on trees that dries out the fuels.

The Climate Council’s new report ‘The Lost Years: Counting the Costs of Climate Inaction in Australia’ has found that the Federal Liberal-National Government has overwhelmingly failed on climate action over its three terms of government. 

As Climate Council CEO Amanda McKenzie says “The record is clear, in eight years, the Federal Government’s decisions have exacerbated the climate crisis and they have tried to cover up their policy failings. Australians have lost almost a decade of what should’ve been our moment to take strong and bold action on climate.” 

We call on all parties to get emissions plummeting THIS DECADE. There’s no more time to waste.

The Lost Years

Research also suggests the Colorado River’s flow is down about 20% this century. How might the region’s river systems be shaped by climate change?

Gutzler: We should plan for diminished flows, particularly out of snow-fed rivers. … What snow there is melts earlier and melts faster. That’s exactly what we saw this year. In the Rio Grande Basin, snowpack was pretty close to what most people would consider average right around the time of peak snow, a month and a half ago. But it has just melted really fast in this hot weather, so the effect of that on streamflow is we get less flow in the river for the same amount of snow that fell last winter.

Garfin: We’re seeing less snow-covered area, less water content in the snowpack, early runoff in the late winter and early spring at elevations lower than around 7,000 feet, an increased fraction in the precipitation that we get coming as rain rather than snow and reduced soil moisture. All of these things combine to reduce the efficiency of runoff. …

We’re already seeing an increasing water supply coming from treated effluent that’s primarily being used to irrigate parks or golf courses. Probably we’ll be seeing more of our potable water supply coming from treated effluent. Another thing — we saw this in Arizona in the State of the State address from Gov. (Doug) Ducey — he said let’s put billions of dollars into developing desalinated water supplies, and there have been plenty of feasibility studies. It’s expensive and it takes a lot of energy, but we could end up with some technological breakthroughs. … Water managers throughout the Colorado River Basin have been creative in finding ways to keep more water in the reservoirs. Obviously that’s not enough, but I think there will be water marketing and trading maneuvers — because some tribes have large amounts of water — to create the legal mechanisms for the cities to buy more water from tribes.

RE: updated version of draft aerial survey text [SEC=OFFICIAL]

What about the impact of climate change on living things in the region? What do we know about changes to ecosystems and biodiversity?

Gutzler: The change in the climate is happening at the same time as humans affect ecosystems in other ways that aren’t connected to climate change, just by habitat destruction and all the other things that people do to change the environment. I view climate change as an added stress to wild ecosystems that are already stressed by large numbers of people moving into the Southwest.

One way for mobile species to adapt to climate change is to move north. … If people have built fences or, at the U.S.-Mexico border, a wall, then the combined effect of a changing climate and barriers to migration can jeopardize the health of species and ecosystems.

In addition to biodiversity, how does a changing climate interact with the Southwest’s rapid population growth?

Garfin: We’ve got a lot of people who have built their homes or expanded towns into the so-called wildland-urban interface, and that puts infrastructure at risk (to wildfires). Also, if we have severe fire, eventually there’s going to be rain — it doesn’t even have to be record rainfall — and all that stuff that has burned is going to find its way into watercourses. We end up with debris flows that can take out infrastructure, that can take out roads or that can end up in reservoirs and increasing the sediment load and decreasing water quality.

Chester: We are figuring out already how to deal with extremes in terms of heat, in terms of monsoons, in terms of drought that are beyond the forecasts of most other places in the United States. The worst of the worst in a particular place in Illinois, let’s say, is probably not close to what you get in Phoenix, so we’re already living with these extremes. … For the most part, things aren’t breaking right now. …

Now, you’re running into the reality that the conditions that we’re designing for are not necessarily what we will live with in the future. So, if we designed for 120 degrees Fahrenheit maximum temperatures, is that what’s going to be the max 20 years from now, 30 years from now, or is it going to be greater?

If the Phoenix metro area is doing pretty well overall, are there any examples of infrastructure that’s already nearing the breaking point?

Chester: You get a lot more blackouts and brownouts in the power system when you have these heat waves. That’s the case anywhere in the U.S., but you certainly have that here. You get inundation of the stormwater system. … Everything breaks more frequently when you have hotter temperatures. That’s the simpler way of looking at it.

The Southwest is a very ethnically diverse region. How does that affect the calculus as society pursues solutions?

Garfin: If we don’t deal with equity in climate solutions, then we’re going to shoot ourselves in the foot. Through the impacts to vulnerable communities and less economically well-off communities, it’ll end up being more costly anyway. … Previous failures were that housing developments in less affluent parts of our cities have typically lacked the kinds of landscaping that would reduce the heat-island effect and that would absorb more stormwater, so we know that now and we know that we haven’t done well by those communities.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change published reports this year that came with a warning — we’re likely to miss the Paris Agreement’s goal of limiting warming to 2.7 degrees Fahrenheit. What does that mean for the Southwest?

Gutzler: We’re living it this year. … You can take an extreme drought of the sort that we’re experiencing now and the way that it has impacted the environment, the water supply across the board, and say that is the direction the Southwest is headed unless we do something about climate change.

Garfin: We already have amplified heat in our cities from the urban heat-island effect, from just changing from natural vegetation to the built environment. Also, as you increase the background temperature, the effects that we see in our large cities — Phoenix, Tucson, Las Vegas — more people are exposed to the public health effects of extreme heat. … In places like Tucson or Las Cruces, our future might look like Phoenix, and Phoenix’s future might look like Middle Eastern cities. … Then, what’s projected is continued decreases in snowpack, perhaps more extreme high flows, but more days with very low flows. That leads to a much less reliable surface water supply.

Are there examples of steps being taken in the region to address climate change through mitigation or adaptation?

Garfin: If we look to some of the more progressive climate change plans like Flagstaff’s Climate Action and Adaptation Plan, they’re doing a couple things in terms of wildfire. One is insisting through their public policy that there’s more defensible space around houses and other structures that are in the wildland-urban interface. Then, they also had a bond in 2012 where city residents overwhelmingly voted to tax themselves to pay for forest treatments on public, federal lands in their watershed to reduce the risk of really severe fires.

Chester: There’s got to be a readjustment of how we utilize ecological infrastructure. … You’re going to have a lot of small-scale failures, and at times it might make sense to allow those failures to happen.

I’m not suggesting we allow loss of life. I’m not suggesting we allow major economic damages. So, a great example here of safe-to-fail infrastructure is Indian Bend Wash in Scottsdale. We’ve basically said, when the monsoon rains come, we are going to allow a giant river to move through the wash, and it might take out the golf courses, the bike paths, the Frisbee golf, the dog park. … The cost of replacing it is pretty low, but the benefit we get is enormous. The benefit is social in terms of all this space. The benefit is ecological; there’s a lot of green infrastructure in there. There’s also the benefit of stormwater attenuation.

With all this in mind, what does the future hold for the Southwest?

Chester: The problem — from my perspective as an engineer who studies infrastructure — is the rigidity of everything we’ve built out. … For the past century we’ve gotten away with these design assumptions that things can be rigid, can be based on a future that is largely predictable. Here we are in the future saying that doesn’t seem to be the case. We need a lot of flexibility.

Gutzler: Ultimately, carbon energy will be replaced on purely economic grounds by renewables, so there’s hope there. But the Southwest is inevitably going to become a hotter and drier place than it is now with huge stresses on human societies and wild ecosystems. That’s what’s in store for us, so we better adapt to it as intelligently as we can.

— Read on www.propublica.org/article/the-southwests-drought-and-fires-are-a-window-to-our-climate-change-future

Economics is broken. It has failed to predict, let alone prevent, financial crises that have shaken the foundations of our societies. Its outdated theories have permitted a world in which extreme poverty persists while the wealth of the super-rich grows year on year. And its blind spots have led to policies that are degrading the living world on a scale that threatens all of our futures. 

Can it be fixed? In Doughnut Economics, Oxford academic Kate Raworth identifies seven critical ways in which mainstream economics has led us astray, and sets out a roadmap for bringing humanity into a sweet spot that meets the needs of all within the means of the planet. En route, she deconstructs the character of ‘rational economic man’ and explains what really makes us tick. She reveals how an obsession with equilibrium has left economists helpless when facing the boom and bust of the real-world economy. She highlights the dangers of ignoring the role of energy and nature’s resources – and the far-reaching implications for economic growth when we take them into account. And in the process, she creates a new, cutting-edge economic model that is fit for the 21st century – one in which a doughnut-shaped compass points the way to human progress. 

Ambitious, radical and rigorously argued, Doughnut Economics promises to reframe and redraw the future of economics for a new generation.

Doughnut Economics

Almost every major centrist/progressive institution in the United States, from 350.org to Greenpeace to Democracy Now to the Democratic Party seems committed to powering the industrial economy with ‘renewable’ energy. And we hear all the time that ‘solar power will save the planet.’ But a) will ‘renewables’ actually power the economy? and b) are ‘renewables’ good for the planet?

The answer in both cases is no.

In fact, the answer is worse than no, in that because of these bright green lies much of the environmental movement has been transformed from being about saving wild places and wild nature into being about powering the industrial economy. These bright green lies have turned much of the environmental movement into a lobbying arm for a sector of the industrial economy, such that you can have 100,000 people marching on the streets of Washington, D.C., and if you ask them why they’re marching, they’ll say, ‘To save the planet,” but if you ask them for their demands, they’ll say, “Subsidies for the solar industry.” There has never been another social movement so completely coopted.

Bright Green Lies systematically debunks many of the lies and distortions that characterize the discourse of those who argue that ‘technology will stop global warming’ or that ‘technology will save the planet.’ The book has a chapter devoted to debunking claims that each of following will individually or collectively power this culture sustainably; or help the planet: solar power, wind power, recycling, ‘efficiency, ‘ batteries and other forms of energy storage, changes in the electrical grid, and hydropower. We also provide our own solutions, and more importantly, a way of looking at these problems that centers the health of the planet.

Bright Green Lies

Kate Raworth: Net-zero is not enough, businesses must shoot for net-positive – edie #auspol #ausvotes #DoughnutEconomics #ClimateCrisis #TellTheTruth demand #ClimateAction #SDG13

Influential Oxford economist Kate Raworth has warned that the recent surge in net-zero targets could create a disconnect between businesses and the living world, and the focus should instead be on setting net-positive strategies to build a restorative, regenerative economy.

Raworth spoke with edie at the inaugural Forum for Global Challenges event in Birmingham. Photo courtesy of Alistair Veryard

Speaking to edie at the Forum for Global Challenges event in Birmingham this week, Raworth – who coined the popular Doughnut Economics theory for sustainable development – said there is a real danger of net-zero becoming “just another piece of jargon” as many firms continue to operate based on linear, extractive business models.

“Nature doesn’t do ‘zero’,” Raworth said. “Nature is generous, it sequesters carbon, it creates cycles. The idea of aiming for ‘zero’ doesn’t connect us back with those living cycles of the world.

“The fact that a lot of the debates have become caught up in the concept of net-zero presents a real myopia in terms of understanding how we connect with the living world. I see net-zero as a passing point… We need to go past zero into an era of sequestration where we are drawing down far more carbon than the world is emitting.”

The Doughnut Economy

Raworth’s Doughnut Economics model is based on the premise that all economies must fall within the means of the planet. The inner ring of the doughnut represents the minimum standards required for a flourishing society, derived from the Sustainable Developments Goals (SDGs). The outer ring represents the ecological ceiling drawn up by earth-system scientists.

Source: kateraworth.com/doughnut

Between the two rings – the dough – is where governments and businesses should be operating, with the needs of people and the planet being met. But this is where economies that focus solely on net-zero principals will fall short, Raworth argues.

“If we come up with net-zero policies which actually degrade ecological diversity, then we’re not solving [the climate crisis] at all because we are not recognising the complexity and the holistic nature of our planetary boundaries,” she added.

“Businesses should aim to be net-positive, they should aim to be generous. I like to think in terms of generous design – we can build buildings that clean the air and put cleaner air back into our systems, we can create industrial systems that can put cleaner water back out, and we can build in ways that sequester carbon.”

Regenerative futures

At a government level, Raworth – who is a lead fellow at the Oxford University’s Environmental Change Institute – noted that the current invasion of Ukraine and the UK’s cost-of-living crisis “are signs that we need to transform the economic systems that we’ve created”.

“The fuel price crisis is a very strong signal that we should move even faster out of fossil fuels and towards renewable energy,” she said. “That shifts you towards low, stable, predicable prices from renewable energy, as opposed to being continually exposed to the variability of geopolitics of fossil fuel prices.”

And at a business level, Raworth stressed the need to ensure sustainability runs through every organisation’s hierarchy – from the owners and investors through to the board and staff.

“If you’re in a company that is owned and financed in ways that put quarterly reports and growth and extraction for the shareholders first, it’s extremely difficult to show that you’re going to be part of a regenerative and distributive future.

“Equally, if sustainability is buried in a department at mid-management level and it doesn’t have a voice on the board, that business is not fit for the future because the regenerative capacity of the living world has to have a voice at the governance table of every company.”


— Read on www.edie.net/kate-raworth-net-zero-is-not-enough-businesses-must-shoot-for-net-positive/

Economics is broken. It has failed to predict, let alone prevent, financial crises that have shaken the foundations of our societies. Its outdated theories have permitted a world in which extreme poverty persists while the wealth of the super-rich grows year on year. And its blind spots have led to policies that are degrading the living world on a scale that threatens all of our futures. 

Can it be fixed?

In Doughnut Economics, Oxford academic Kate Raworth identifies seven critical ways in which mainstream economics has led us astray, and sets out a roadmap for bringing humanity into a sweet spot that meets the needs of all within the means of the planet. En route, she deconstructs the character of ‘rational economic man’ and explains what really makes us tick. She reveals how an obsession with equilibrium has left economists helpless when facing the boom and bust of the real-world economy. She highlights the dangers of ignoring the role of energy and nature’s resources – and the far-reaching implications for economic growth when we take them into account. And in the process, she creates a new, cutting-edge economic model that is fit for the 21st century – one in which a doughnut-shaped compass points the way to human progress.

Doughnut Economics

Labor takes power with help of Teals and Greens and climate push | RenewEconomy #auspol #ausvotes now it’s time for real #ClimateAction #SDG13 let’s begin by understanding the problems we face. #insiders

Coalition swept from power by a stunning and unprecedented surge in support for Teals and Greens and a strong enough rebound for Labor.

By Giles Parkinson

The nine-year reign of the Coalition government has come to a crunching end, swept from power by a stunning and unprecedented surge in support for Teals and Greens and a strong enough rebound for Labor.

Anthony Albanese will be Australia’s 31st prime minister, athough late on Saturday night it was still not clear if he would lead a majority government, and may have to deal with a cross bench of up to 15. Many believe a minority position would be a good thing.

The election of Labor – and the strong support for independents and the Greens pushing for strong action on climate and a rapid switch to renewables – promises to be a watershed moment for Australia’s green energy transition.

The climate issue barely rated a mention among the major parties, but Labor – merely by embracing new technologies and ceasing to be a bollard against sound policy – will likely trigger an avalanche of green energy investment.

It will be under pressure to increase its targets – having trimmed them after its failure in the last election – but that may not be hard to do if it can unlock the flow of green capital, commit to its infrastructure projects, and give the key regulators a kick up the rear.

The electorate’s frustration with the Coalition has been brilliantly marshalled by the likes of the Climate200 campaign led by Simon Holmes a Court.

Inner city Liberals were eviscerated by the surge of the independents and the minor parties.

The Teals could number six or seven, with the return of Zali Steggall in Warringah paving the way for more strong, independent woman MPs representing the seats of Kooyong, Goldstein, North Sydney, Mackellar, and Curtin – although not all these victories are locked in.

The Greens success was more surprising, although not to those closely connected to the campaign.

They could pick up another three seats in Brisbane, a region badly affected by floods, and possibly another in the NSW seat of Richmond (another flood ravaged region) and MacNamara in Victoria. (Only the surging vote of anti-vaxxers in Richmond could save Labor against a strong Greens candidate in that seat).

Nearly all of these gains came in what has been considered Liberal heartlands.

No more Bright Green Lies!

Almost every major centrist/progressive institution in the United States, from 350.org to Greenpeace to Democracy Now to the Democratic Party seems committed to powering the industrial economy with ‘renewable’ energy. And we hear all the time that ‘solar power will save the planet.’ But a) will ‘renewables’ actually power the economy? and b) are ‘renewables’ good for the planet?

The answer in both cases is no.

In fact, the answer is worse than no, in that because of these bright green lies much of the environmental movement has been transformed from being about saving wild places and wild nature into being about powering the industrial economy. These bright green lies have turned much of the environmental movement into a lobbying arm for a sector of the industrial economy, such that you can have 100,000 people marching on the streets of Washington, D.C., and if you ask them why they’re marching, they’ll say, ‘To save the planet,” but if you ask them for their demands, they’ll say, “Subsidies for the solar industry.” There has never been another social movement so completely coopted.

Bright Green Lies systematically debunks many of the lies and distortions that characterize the discourse of those who argue that ‘technology will stop global warming’ or that ‘technology will save the planet.’ The book has a chapter devoted to debunking claims that each of following will individually or collectively power this culture sustainably; or help the planet: solar power, wind power, recycling, ‘efficiency, ‘ batteries and other forms of energy storage, changes in the electrical grid, and hydropower. We also provide our own solutions, and more importantly, a way of looking at these problems that centers the health of the planet.

Bright Green Lies

https://youtu.be/O0pt3ioQuNc

Liberal party figures lamented the loss of key “moderates”, but the massive loss or support in what have traditionally been traditionally safe seats highlights the frustration of seeing these conservatives vote consistently with the Far Right.

In reality, the losing Liberals were neither moderate (Tim Wilson is the former policy chief for the Institute of Public Affairs that wrote the lengthy wish list that included killing off the ABC and all climate action), or spineless (Josh Frydenberg had some idea of what a good policy might look like but was too scared to implement it, such as when he dumped his proposed vehicle emissions tax after it was dubbed the “carbon tax on wheels” by the Murdoch media.)

As NSW Liberal energy minister and treasurer Matt Kean noted: “There are definitely lessons to be learned, that when the Liberal party goes too far to the right, we lose in the centre.”

Importantly for Australia’s transition to smarter, cleaner and cheaper technologies, this election brings to an end the mind-numbing stupidity of having a prime minister Scott Morrison, mocking battery storage and electric vehicles, and an energy minister Angus Taylor, seemingly obsessed with nothing more than support fossil fuels and slowing down solar.

It’s not entirely clear that Albanese really gets climate and energy, but in Chris Bowen he has a capable energy and climate minister who actually drives an EV, and there are plenty of others in Cabinet – and of course on the cross bench – who understand the importance and the opportunities and will be pushing for strong action that respects, rather than ignores, the science.

Ironically, it may be the likes of Kean – with his ambitious plans to transform the country’s biggest and most coal dependent grid to renewables in a decade – that could help a Labor government, supported by Greens and the Teals – deliver the sort of climate and energy policy the market has been calling for.

Giles Parkinson is founder and editor of Renew Economy, and is also the founder of One Step Off The Grid and founder/editor of the EV-focused The Driven. Giles has been a journalist for 40 years and is a former business and deputy editor of the Australian Financial Review.

— Read on reneweconomy.com.au/labor-takes-power-with-help-of-teals-and-greens-and-climate-push/

Minerals and Materials Blindness

Michael Pascoe: My dog says Morrison must go. He’s right #auspol #ausvotes #ClimateCrisis demand #ClimateAction #SDG13 #TellTheTruth #IPCCReport #CoralNotCoal #FundOurFutureNotGas

Without a commitment to integrity we are doomed to continue our slide towards the corruption of America’s Trumpian politics.

By

I have a very peaceable dog, a lover not a fighter, happy to befriend or at least ignore every dog he meets – with one exception*: Trent Zimmerman’s Simba.

Nixon (so named because he somewhat resembled a canine Tricky Dicky when he was caught looking serious as a pup) has given a good impression of wanting to remove Simba’s throat any time their paths have crossed.

I have apologised to Trent and spoken harshly to Nixon about his behaviour, explaining that it is not Simba’s fault that Trent and every other federal Liberal MP lacks the ticker and humanity to stop the cruelty inflicted on the Biloela family for more than four years now.

Scott Morrison

They all value their pre-selections more than the lives of those two little girls, Kopika and Tharnicaa, and show no sign of caring that their leader, Scott Morrison, continues to lie about the government’s ability to let the family go home to Bilo’. He can stop the needless and very expensive torture any time he wants.

No, Nixon has not actually said that is the specific issue that so riles him about the North Sydney MP (via his dog) but it’s easy enough to deduce.

All the other issues at stake in today’s election – and there are many of them – are, quite frankly, way over Nixon’s head.

But he has some understanding of children; children are closer to him and he to them. And he understands cages and cruelty. Like many a dog, he seems to sense evil when it’s afoot.

That’s what the treatment of Priya, Nades, Kopika and Tharnicaa has become – a display of evil for political purposes, to cover up the appalling original mistake of the big pre-dawn raid, a government enmired in its own failure.

Nixon is a single-issue dog. The Biloela family alone is enough reason for him to want a change of government, given that Labor and the quality independent candidates have pledged to allow the family’s return home while the Coalition ducks and weaves and lies about it.

The matter of integrity

So I have the pressure of Nixon’s stare on me as I vote today, but there are other issues I have considered.

For me, the broader issue of integrity in government is crucial. Without a commitment to integrity we are doomed to continue our slide towards the corruption of America’s Trumpian politics.

For the past two years The New Daily has been steadily exposing the unprecedented level of the Morrison government’s corrupt use of public money for its political ends – billions of dollars in multiple rorted grants schemes, uncontested tenders and outright gifts.

Now Trent Zimmerman has stuffed pamphlets in my letter box effectively boasting about it: “TRENT’S PLAN FOR OUR HARBOUR FORESHORES AND LOCAL BUSHLAND”.

Trent is a former North Sydney councillor. That sort of work, apparently, is supposed to determine our federal government.

A companion piece of advertising – part of the nasty negative campaign against the impressive community independent candidates – alleges that independents won’t be able to deliver the bribes and pork your Liberal member does.

So according to the Morrison government and all its members, public money is to be used to buy votes, not used for the best outcome for our Commonwealth, not used on the basis of the greatest need, not prioritised to deliver the biggest bang for our hundreds of billions of borrowed bucks.

The supposed leader of the Liberal Party’s compromised “moderates” rump, Simon Birmingham, declared over the obscene carpork scandal that people voting for the government meant it was perfectly fine.

It is not. It has long since tipped beyond the level of venality to outright corruption. No wonder Scott Morrison and all but one of his MPs will only consider a toothless and useless integrity commission.

Blaming the Opposition for not even bringing his bill to the floor of the Parliament is another whole level of Mr Morrison not holding a hose.

Were I a single-issue dog owner, the pledge by the quality independents and Labor to produce a genuine federal ICAC would be enough to win my vote.

The Climate Council’s new report ‘The Lost Years: Counting the Costs of Climate Inaction in Australia’ has found that the Federal Liberal-National Government has overwhelmingly failed on climate action over its three terms of government. 

As Climate Council CEO Amanda McKenzie says “The record is clear, in eight years, the Federal Government’s decisions have exacerbated the climate crisis and they have tried to cover up their policy failings. Australians have lost almost a decade of what should’ve been our moment to take strong and bold action on climate.” 

We call on all parties to get emissions plummeting THIS DECADE. There’s no more time to waste.

The Lost Years

But wait – there’s more

On climate policy, the choice is stark and obvious. I do not understand how anyone with even a little understanding of the science, the threat and the opportunities could possibly vote for the worst option – the Coalition, riven as it is with climate deniers and climate don’t-cares, beholden to Big Carbon.

The immediate past deputy prime minister, Michael McCormack, was at least being honest when he said “we’re not worried, well I’m certainly not worried, about what might happen in 30 years’ time”.

It is the voter’s responsibility, perhaps the voter’s hope, to choose the least-worst option. On the role and treatment of women, that can’t be the Morrison mob.

Julia Banks’ columns in The New Daily during this never-ending election campaign have relentlessly exposed the Morrison government’s inherent misogyny. Her column yesterday was red hot in calling out the way the integrity-free Liberals have attacked their independent opponents:

“They have also facilitated a bubbling to the surface of their deeply embedded sexism, simply because they are being challenged by professional women in the form of the Teal independents.

“That the Liberals think it’s OK to describe these women, who include doctors, lawyers, businesswomen and an esteemed foreign correspondent, and the countless men and women in their communities, as everything from ‘puppets’ to ‘fakes’ to ‘frauds’ is disturbing and vile.

“Howard disgustingly referred to these women as ‘anti-Liberal groupies’. A groupie is defined as a young woman who follows celebrity or pop groups as a trade for sexual favours.”

As the general said, the standard you walk by is the standard you accept.

There are other issues, important issues, that also are worth considering – getting past the Coalition’s preferred (and false) cliches about their economic management, the major parties’ dud housing policies in the face of a crisis, our appalling diplomatic failures that have resulted in Australia being the only country on earth unable to talk to China, the preparedness of a loose-cannon defence minister to endanger national security for domestic political points, the lack of ambition or vision for Australia to realise its potential to be a better country for all, symptomatic of a tired government no longer fit for purpose.

Journalists generally aren’t supposed to announce who they’ll vote for, but the balance today in working out the least-worst option is so demanding, the risk of continuing on the most-worst path so great – and Nixon’s stare so commanding – that I will.

I have voted for both major parties in the past, but today I am fortunate to have the option of an impressive independent candidate in my electorate, one that is now marginal.

Kylea Tink’s campaign colour is pink, but she fits well under the ‘Teal’ umbrella. Hopefully the strength of the Teals commitments will be able to keep the bastards honest and instil a little more backbone.

So I will be voting one Kylea Tink, #2 Labor and the rest of the numbers can fall where they will until a coin flip decides whether Clive Palmer’s UAP or One Hanson is last.

I believe I owe that to this land, my children and grandchildren – and Kopika and Tharnicaa.

*Correction: There is one other dog Nixon doesn’t like – he looks a lot like Simba.
— Read on thenewdaily.com.au/news/politics/australian-politics/federal-election-2022/2022/05/21/morrison-must-go-michael-pascoe/

RE: updated version of draft aerial survey text [SEC=OFFICIAL]

The UN Gets Radical on Economic Transformation – The Good Men Project #EcologicalCrisis #ClimateCrisis #TellTheTruth #IPCCReport and demand #ClimateAction #SDG13 #auspol #ausvotes #FundOurFutureNotGas

The world’s biggest intergovernmental body says economics is broken, fossil fuel firms have blocked reform, and governments are lying to us.

By Ben Martin

This week saw the publication of a major new IPCC climate change report,1focusing on what can and must be done to reverse emissions growth and keep global heating under control. It’s a colossal piece of work: 239 listed authors across almost 3000 pages of research and analysis, covering not just atmospheric science but technology, history, group psychology, institutional and political theory, cultural philosophy, international relations, and so much more.

In short, it is humanity’s roadmap for tackling climate change: all of the technological, social and political options for cutting carbon, rigorously costed, compared and assessed. It is terrifying in its frank assessment of the challenge, but also inspiring in its ultimate message: we know what to do, and we have all the tools and tech we need. We just need to act.

“Government and business leaders are saying one thing, but doing another. Simply put, they are lying. And the results will be catastrophic.”

— Antonio Guterres, UN Secretary-General

This isn’t a comprehensive assessment of the report itself (we’ll leave that to Carbon Brief), but we wanted to respond to four points that stood out to us at the Coalition.

The big picture: it’s not too late – yet

First up, the state of play. As the IPCC report makes plain, the window to limit global heating to a “safe” 1.5°C is, for all intents and purposes, over. Even if governments achieve their current climate pledges (which, at the moment, they are not), we will hit 3.0°C of warming before the end of the century – a disastrous outcome that will cost millions of lives and cause untold suffering.

But the bleakness of this possible future must not lead us to despair. Instead, the IPCC tells us that we can – and must – avert disaster through targeted, immediate and radical action. If you boil down those 3000 pages into five (extremely oversimplified) recommendations, this is what’s needed:

  • immediately stop building new fossil fuel infrastructure and start to phase out existing stuff
  • build massive amounts of renewables, everywhere
  • electrify everything – cars, lorries, heating, manufacturing, all of it
  • conserve nature, especially carbon sinks like soils, mangroves and rainforests
  • invest like crazy in R&D in hard-to-decarbonise sectors like aviation, cement, and steel.

The good news is that all of the above is eminently possible and we already know perfectly well how to do it. Even better, the costs of mitigation are falling fast, and are already much lower than most investors and policymakers are aware; the report even has a fantastic chart which lays out the potential and the likely costs for all the main decarbonisation side by side.

Almost every major centrist/progressive institution in the United States, from 350.org to Greenpeace to Democracy Now to the Democratic Party seems committed to powering the industrial economy with ‘renewable’ energy. And we hear all the time that ‘solar power will save the planet.’ But a) will ‘renewables’ actually power the economy? and b) are ‘renewables’ good for the planet?

The answer in both cases is no.

In fact, the answer is worse than no, in that because of these bright green lies much of the environmental movement has been transformed from being about saving wild places and wild nature into being about powering the industrial economy. These bright green lies have turned much of the environmental movement into a lobbying arm for a sector of the industrial economy, such that you can have 100,000 people marching on the streets of Washington, D.C., and if you ask them why they’re marching, they’ll say, ‘To save the planet,” but if you ask them for their demands, they’ll say, “Subsidies for the solar industry.” There has never been another social movement so completely coopted.

Bright Green Lies systematically debunks many of the lies and distortions that characterize the discourse of those who argue that ‘technology will stop global warming’ or that ‘technology will save the planet.’ The book has a chapter devoted to debunking claims that each of following will individually or collectively power this culture sustainably; or help the planet: solar power, wind power, recycling, ‘efficiency, ‘ batteries and other forms of energy storage, changes in the electrical grid, and hydropower. We also provide our own solutions, and more importantly, a way of looking at these problems that centers the health of the planet.

Bright Green Lies

“When the world’s foremost panel of climate scientists – and the head of the UN – come out and say that economics is broken, fossil fuel majors have deliberately blocked reform and our governments are lying to us – well, that hits different.”

But we don’t have time to go slowly!

The Climate Council’s new report ‘The Lost Years: Counting the Costs of Climate Inaction in Australia’ has found that the Federal Liberal-National Government has overwhelmingly failed on climate action over its three terms of government. 

As Climate Council CEO Amanda McKenzie says “The record is clear, in eight years, the Federal Government’s decisions have exacerbated the climate crisis and they have tried to cover up their policy failings. Australians have lost almost a decade of what should’ve been our moment to take strong and bold action on climate.” 

We call on all parties to get emissions plummeting THIS DECADE. There’s no more time to waste.

The Lost Years

None of the above is easy. But we don’t have enough time to proceed in a piecemeal, incremental fashion; in fact, the IPCC report is amazingly strident in its calls for radical, transformational systemic change – doubly so considering it is written by naturally cautious scientists and watered down by governments.

“Mitigation at the speed and scale required to likely limit warming to 2°C or below implies deep economic and structural changes,” says the report, from “the status quo of a global high-carbon, consumption, and GDP growth-oriented economy… to a low-carbon, energy services, well-being and equity-orientated economy.” (Or, as we like to call it, a green economy.) Furthermore, this “cannot be achieved through incremental change.”

That’s not the only radical statement in the report. The IPCC also argues that:

  • changing individual behaviour without systemic reform won’t do enough to tackle climate change;2
  • social and economic inequality is a driver of pollution and environmental destruction;3
  • colonialism is not only a driver of the climate crisis but also continues to exacerbate the vulnerability of marginalised and oppressed communities;
  • and even goes as far as saying that economic degrowth can contribute to improved wellbeing.

We’ve been saying this for years, but it’s another thing to hear such forceful language coming from the diplomatic cloisters of the UN. From sufficiency to wellbeing, from planetary boundaries to inequality, the IPCC report endorses – and in some cases even goes further than – our Five Principles of a Green Economy.

UN points the finger

The IPCC also gets tough with the vested interests and power structures which are profiting from the current system – and blocking real change.

The full report is explicit in naming economics and institutional power as reasons why we’re failing to tackle climate change: “The interaction between politics, economics and power relationships (our emphasis) is central to explaining why broad commitments do not always translate into urgent action.” Perhaps unsurprisingly, this text has been omitted from the “Summary for Policymakers”, where governments can veto text they don’t like.

And the full report has many references to industry lobbying from high-fossil fuel sectors and corporations as a major impediment to action: “the power of incumbent fossil fuel interests… block[s] initiatives towards decarbonization” through “targeted lobbying, doubt-inducing media strategies” and “funding groups opposed to climate policy”. Again, all of this was cut from the summary for policymakers.

As UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres put it at the report’s launch, “Government and business leaders are saying one thing, but doing another. Simply put, they are lying. And the results will be catastrophic.”

Again, none of this is really new. Greta, Greenpeace and Extinction Rebellion have all said as much. But when the world’s foremost panel of climate scientists – and the head of the UN – come out and say that economics is broken, fossil fuel majors have deliberately blocked reform and our governments are lying to us – well, that hits different.

Social movements are the key to unlocking action

One final and critical thing stuck out to us from the IPCC paper – its emphasis on the power of protest, social movements, and climate activism to achieve real change. It namechecks the Green Deal, Fridays for Future and the campaigning of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and states that climate activists have “played a substantial role in pressuring governments to create environmental laws,” – as we saw here in the UK.

As the report makes clear, “collective action by individuals as part of social movements… underpins system change.” Absolutely right, and that’s why our GEC strategy is based around connecting with and catalysing citizen movements through dialogue.

Antonio Guterres went one step further: “climate activists are sometimes depicted as dangerous radicals. But the truly dangerous radicals are the countries that are increasing the production of fossil fuels.”

Conclusion

As James Murray put it: “Scientists tell us we need to get to net zero carbon emissions or face catastrophe. Engineers tell us it’s possible. Economists tell us it could benefit everyone.”

So why isn’t it happening? Politics and the fossil fuel industry. And the best response is mass protest from citizens and communities. That’s the message from the world’s scientists and the UN, and we couldn’t agree more. Let’s put democracy to work and build a social contract for systemic economic reform.

 Ben Martin, GEC


Footnotes
1—Climate jargon alert: the full title is (deep breath) Climate Change 2022: Mitigation of Climate Change. Contribution of Working Group III to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, often abbreviated to “IPCC AR6 WG III: Mitigation”. Trips off the tongue, doesn’t it?

2—”Behavioural change not embedded in structural change will contribute little to climate change mitigation.”

3—”Unequal societies may be more likely to pollute and degrade their environments… More equitable income distributions can improve environmental quality.”

— Read on goodmenproject.com/featured-content/the-un-gets-radical-on-economic-transformation/