Today’s AFR has published my letterbelow pointing out that even adopting the best of the two recommendations in the Warburton RET review would result in Australia continuing to use 17 percent of its energy from grossly inefficient renewables and the payment of enormous subsidies.
Separately, the AFR publishes the results of a survey which purports toshow 82% support for keeping the existing policy. That would increase the renewables proportion to 26% and provide considerably larger subsidies than under the Warburton review. The survey was commissioned by a company which has invested heavily in renewables, notably windmills.
Whether or not this survey is correct, it seems likely that the Senate will prevent any change in the heavily protectionist existing policy, with the cost being borne by taxpayers. Hence this would run counter to desirable economic and budgetary reform objectives.
What is overlooked in the comments on RET is that any continued high resort to renewables would be based on acceptance of the global warming scare and wouldrun counter to the repeal of the carbon tax. A better approach would be to phase out the renewables subsidies on the basis that the increased uncertainties in the dangerous temperatures thesis no longer justify government expenditure designed to reduce usage of fossil fuels.
Meantime, the dispute over accuracy of temperatures continues, with two climate warmist academics claiming that the “adjusted” temperatures used by the BOM actually show a lower warming trend than if the “raw” data used. This is contrary to the analysis by scientist Jennifer Moharasy and does not explain various analyses by Tom Quirk and William Kininmonth indicating the apparent upward bias in BOM temperatures. Although the report in today’s Australian quotes the BOM as attempting to explain the large warming trend in its “adjusted” temperatures for Rutherglen, compared to the “raw” data trend, the explanation is questioned by Graham Lloyd,author of the Australian’s article (see below).
There has as yet been no official statement on the temperatures dispute by the head of BOM, Dr Rob Vertessy or by Environment Minister Hunt or his Parliamentary Secretary to whom the BOM reports. Dr Vertessy, who joined the BOM in 2007 as a water scientist, does not appear to have had experience on temperature measurements. But having spent 20 years at the CSIRO before joining BOM he will doubtless be well-educated on global warming!
While Abbott continues to reject any policy of having troops on the ground in Iraq, it is reported that 200 special forces may be sent to Afghanistan to supplement the 400 “trainers” already there and that some kind of “enhanced partnership” arrangement has been made with NATO. The sending of special forces to Afghanistan may be partly intended to encourage the US to retain a strong back up force there – a kind of response to the comment Obama made when questioned about troops in Iraq viz, that if we send troops in and then withdraw after destroying IS everything will then return to what is was before.
The IS problem is illustrated by the attempt made by IS to gun down an Australian plane when it was dumping food and water to Amerli, the Iraqi town now “saved” after being besieged.
Abbott has also continued to strongly condemn the Islamic State (he describes it a “a death cult”), implying that it needs to be utterly destroyed. As suggested in an article below by David Martin Jones, who is an expert analyst working at Queensland University, there is a need to take the attack on jihadism much further than simply identifying extremist groups. His article, published yesterday before Abbott’s comment, also argued that a death cult exists, but across a wider spectrum and operating as a form of political nihilism that needs to be identified publicly by governments and intelligence agencies – “the elected representatives of a secular democracy ought to do far more to defend a political way of life and target the promulgation and appeal of this potent and ultimately fascist death cult”. In short, we need some pronouncements by our political (and other) leaders of the importance of western values and our rejection of attempts to undermine those.