24
Apr
2017

Slight Improvement in Newspoll, March for Science

Newspoll Brings Small Lift

Today’s Newspoll has improved the Coalition’s polling from 47/53 to 48/52 on a TPP basis but this still leaves it in an unwinnable position and, as Crowe points out, there is no improvement in the primary vote of 36 (Labor 35). Further, as Andrew Bolt argues, unless the continued division between Turnbull and Abbott is overcome the Coalition is unlikely to restore its polling to a winnable position. Bolt’s solution is for Turnbull to go.  Note also that, while ticking the citizen tests, Bolt seeks a more meaningful approach by attacking the groups which portray an incorrect picture of Australia (see attachments).

March of Science

The so-called March of Science yesterday reportedly occurred at about 500 places around the globe and received television and media coverage here. A major reason for the demonstration was the belief that governments are not doing enough to prevent the increase in temperatures and reports on the demos in the US indicate that particular concern centres there around Trump’s view on climate change, his decision to remove Obama’s views on that from the White House web, and his appointment of a new head of the Environment Protection Authority who is reported  to be a sceptic (although recent reports suggest he is less sceptical than first thought).

The US policy on climate change, including whether it will meet its (voluntary) commitment to reduce emissions given in Paris, remains uncertain. However, the question scientists and policy advisers should be addressing is whether the analysis so far published has established scientific results which prove beyond reasonable doubt that governments need to continue policies designed to reduce emissions of CO2 and possibly even step up action. Recipients of my commentaries will be aware that a large number of experts on climate analysis believe that existing emission-reduction policies are not justified scientifically and are imposing unwarranted costs on industries and households. Hundreds of papers have been published to this effect and I myself have made numerous presentations of similar ilk (see my website).

It is not appropriate here to  detail the analysis in support of the sceptical view. However, the letter below I sought (unsuccessfully) to be published today provides an indication of why the existing analysis is faulty.

Saturday’s  March for Science reportedly occurred in about 500 places around the world and was driven by concern that governments are not taking sufficient action to combat the threat of dangerous global warming. This threat is based on the conclusion reached by some scientists that  the continuing increase in emissions of carbon dioxide from usage of fossil fuels causes temperature levels to rise continually.

But what the marchers failed to acknowledge is that temperatures have not risen continually.  While emissions of CO2 have increased progressively since 1940, temperatures did not increase in the period prior to 1977 and have not increased since the late 1990s. Many scientists and others have concluded that the science of dangerous global warming is therefore defective and the new US President appears to have accepted that.

What we now have is a clash of scientific opinion, a phenomenon that has occurred many times in the past.  Government policies need to recognise this and reduce restrictions on usage of fossil fuels which are unnecessarily causing higher electricity prices. That would be a more balanced scientific approach.

An attempt by Turnbull to present a more sceptical view on climate change along these lines would help improve Coalition polling – and his own

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