29
Jul
2014

Policies relating to Climate Change; BIG Coal Mine Approved; No Improved TPP Polling; Abbott Should Assume Budget Responsibility

Challenge for C Change Policy

Following Henry Ergas’s excellent article yesterday arguing that “Abbott must start cleaning out the Augean stable of climate change follies, beginning with the RET” (see below), I have had a letter published today keying off the Ergas article (see below). Note the Letters Ed’s omissions and additions and my error. Unfortunately, the omissions included my suggestion for an independent inquiry to examine the disparate relationship between changes in temperatures and CO2 concentrations.

Big Coal Mine Approved

Coincidentally, in an important “environmental” decision, approval has been given by federal environment minister Hunt (Queensland had already approved) to a proposal by an Indian company, chaired by an Indian billionaire, to develop in Queensland what would be Australia’s largest coal mine (and one of the largest in the world) if it proceeds. There is considerable potential for other coal mines in the same area, including from reserves owned by Palmer and Rinehart. While Hunt observes in his approval that the coal would “provide electricity for up to 100 million people in India”, strong opposition has been declared by environmental activist groups including by Greens senator Waters, who describes is as “an act of climate criminality”.  It will be of some interest to see what attitude is taken by Labor to the approval, which requires 36 “strict conditions” (including in relation to groundwater) to be met. The article below (extracted from the internet and longer than the published article) has the same heading as the one published in The Age, which differs from the internet one.

No Improved TPP Polling, Abbott Should Assume Budget Responsibility

Abbott’s leadership on MH17 has improved his personal polling (now equal to Shorten on “better PM”) but not the TPP (46/54), which continues unchanged with Labor well ahead. Hockey remains the problem. In my letter in today’s AFR (see below) I have suggested Abbott take responsibility for the budget, present a revised one by end August and have a Cabinet reshuffle. The publication of research suggesting there has been no increase in inequality of incomes should be used in explaining the case for reductions in budget expenditures and the widespread benefits from the near 50% increase in per capita incomes over the past 20 years