Government announces emissions target – but is it enough? 121



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The Federal Government will today announce it plans to cut carbon emissions by between 26 and 28 per cent by 2030, using 2005 as a baseline, but the question remains: is this enough?

Although 26 per cent may sound like a bold and ambitious target, it will still put Australia second-last in terms of commitment to reducing carbon emissions. Canada, which has been described by Climate Change Authority chairman Bernie Fraser as a “laggard” drags the chain behind us.

Climate experts say this target is not high enough to limit warming to 2 degrees above pre-industrial levels, which is what they say is needed to prevent dangerous climate changes.

Both the government’s own Climate Change Authority and the Academy of Science, Australia’s premier scientific institution, have called for a 40 to 60 per cent cut on 2000 levels by 2030. The Climate Change Authority, an independent organisation, recommends 63 per cent cuts in that same time frame.

Opposition climate change spokesman Mark Butler told the ABC that a 26 per cent target put Australia at the back of the pack.

“Countries to which we often compare ourselves — like the US and the United Kingdom, Germany, countries like that — all have targets in an equivalent timeframe into the 40 per cent range, so 41 per cent for America, 48 per cent for the UK, mid-40s for Germany.”

According to the Climate Institute, there are 24 countries with emissions comparable to Australia, each releasing between 0.5 and 1.5 per cent of the global total. Together, that accounts for 21 per cent of carbon pollution – equivalent to that created by China.

Among the 24, Australia has the highest per person emissions and ranks fifth in pollution per GDP thanks to our reliance on coal. The Climate Institute insists that Australia needs to make deeper cuts in order to play its part in the global goal of stabilising the climate.

In per capita terms, a 26 per cent cut is actually a smaller cut than the average across the developed world, or than that proposed by any of the US, European Union or Japan.

Bill Shorten accused the Prime Minister of having “flat earth views”.

Meanwhile, climate change sceptic and West Australian Liberal MP Dennis Jensen said the target was “too high” and that no target was needed. “I think it would be damaging … you’re going to be forcing electricity prices up, obviously,” he said.
The Government will take the proposal to an international meeting in Paris at the end of the year that aims to reach a global agreement on emissions reductions.

What do you think of the government’s proposed emissions target? Should we be doing more?

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  1. Yes of course we should World Leaders and we were ahead of the pack till Abbott came into Government, now we are not even the race

    1 REPLY
    • Spot on Libbi.
      Abbott will destroy this wonderful place the way he is going.
      I am a lucky person that has solar power I do not generally pay power bills except in the winter when my bill goes to $40.00 for three months.
      Less day light hours and the aircon on most days to keep warm.
      So why are we all not going solar?? the government could put the panels on your roof and the money it makes goes back into paying off the panels.
      Sure you will get no rebate during the year but you will not pay any power bills. This has to cut emissions.
      The power every one is generating will just about cover your councils power for street lights etc.
      It will cut down on power stations costs because they will have power coming into them.
      It will create thousands of jobs.
      Reduce pollution in record time.
      Just a thought it will be interesting what you all think?

  2. Dinosaur govt both on emissions & how they have destroyed our NBN.

    1 REPLY
    • I have had NBN connected and it hasn’t made one iota of difference. Yes, the ageing copper needs to be replaced in the inner suburbs. Laba and it’s fraudband.

  3. Of course. Learn to love the elegant grandeur of wind turbines. Subsidise solar, fund research. This lot are just DOPES. Obama was right in his recent statements on climate change.

    6 REPLY
  4. We have a party of old chook’s and dinosaur’s in charge who don’t believe in can’t expect to much and we get nothing 🙂

  5. I’m lost for words when it comes to how we ( our elected government) are caring for our environment and each other.

  6. This Over 60s page is becoming more and more left-leaning, as are the people who comment . You people should get a grip.

    13 REPLY
    • There’s no rules saying right wing people can’t voice their opinions as well, just because there are more left wing comments perhaps it because so many people are seeing this government for what it is finally.

    • I am a swinging voter……how can anyone defend what Abbot is doing…. a controling Narcissist,who does not know the meaning of integrity!!!!

    • Why would I voice my differing opinions here? To be verbally abused or personally attacked? Lefties are totally unable to see the other side’s views without over reacting and denigrating someone for having a conservative opinion. You would automatically label me ‘racist’, ‘climate denier’ or whatever you deem pertinent to the particular argument. The point I will make is that, when I joined this group originally, I thought our group was geared towards the shared social interests of people in their 60s+. I am a member of several politically motivated groups. I discuss politics on those sites. This site used to provide a diversion from political, world issues. Not so anymore. Everyday we are bombarded with one-eyed political opinions, sometimes from ill-informed whingers. I guess I will sit back now and expect to be berated for telling it like it is…..or should I say, like it has become on here.

    • Cheryl, only a few people, on both the left and the right, resort to verbal abuse and frankly they should be ignored. We are all entitled to our opinions and it is best that they be expressed, considered and where appropriate debated.
      I am glad that this site consider things of real importance – and climate change is one of these. It is not just politics.

    • Surely Cheryl, that is the charm of living in Australia , being entitled to a view. And the great thing about social media is that with a flick of a button, you can leave a conversation to falter without reading it.

    • I couldn’t agree with you more Janet about the good fortune we have to live in this lucky country. And yes, we can leave the conversation if we choose to tune out or in for that matter and that is one aspect where social media affords us all a personal choice.However, the very unpleasant aspect of social media is that it has also given the less considerate people amongst us a voice and a persona behind which to hide their anonymity; and it is this security of anonymity which allows them the opportunity to denigrate those who might put forward a dissenting viewpoint.

    • Cheryl, I think we have to accept that this is socialist website, just like the competition is right leaning. It is what it is.

  7. What I find hard to comprehend is. The carbon that we are burning is carbon that is or was already here. When we burn it we produce C02. The carbon returns to the earth and the CO2 is released to the atmosphere and transformed to O2 by plants and allows us to breath. Where is the pollution.?

    13 REPLY
    • mike here-liked with a comment Roger hydrogen powered engines which are used already & are expensively on the road would go a great way to curb the excessive amounts of CO2 in our atmosphere. Especially if used in stationary engines too.

    • Roger, carbon is not the problem. The problem is the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere which is increasing because we are burning that old carbon faster than the plants can transform it back into a stored form of carbon. The increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere acts like an ever thicker blanket round the earth and stops it cooling – ever been too hot in bed at night? We need to decrease that blanket effect by decreasing the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

    • I thought that the plants changed the co2 which is a gas back to o2 which is what we breath and the carbon returns to the Earth as a solid as carbon as soot from combustion. The co2 is I do not think a problem as we know that global warming is a rort to extract a carbon tax and the Earth is not getting warmer it is going through a cold cycle. My thoughts only.

    • The wise guys told us to build a desalination plant because it would never rain again, said our dams would never be full again. Then THEY told us about global warming, now THEY are telling us 2030 will herald a mini ice age. So, we have had rain in abundance, not everywhere I admit, but more than THEY said. Major water catchment are holding well. In Victoria we’ve had the best snow season in 6 years. The desalination plant, a rort, has never been used. There has been no increase measured in temperatures, except those taken by THEM. the calving of ice is an annual event, some years worse than other, a natural event. The earth is never constant in its performance, but THEY are Chicken Little and the sky is always falling. And don’t bother trying to come back at me with figures and crap, because I will still believe it’s bullshit. There are too many scare mongering scientists who line their pockets by grant grabbing.

    • Roger Murray as a denier . . . Just a couple of points:
      1. global warming due to CO2 in the atmosphere is supported by the majority of serious scientists. It is not a rort.
      2. “soot from combustion” is not relevant
      3. The amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is increasing because we are burning that old carbon faster than the plants can transform it back into a stored form of carbon and O2. So we need to decrease our burning of those carbon based fuels.

    • My question is why all of a sudden this has become relevant. Look at the emissions during the Middle East problem look at what was emitted during the Wars.Look at volcanic eruptions, I am not convinced yet it is a problem. Carbon Tax is the key. Its all to do with money extraction me thinks.

    • Roger, world population is growing at an alarming rate. Everyone wants clothing, housing etc. take housing for a start. Land must be cleared, our CO2 recycling trees gone to make way for more housing, infrastructure, industry etc.
      It takes energy to produce the goods and services our growing populations want and need. How has that energy been provided in the past in this country and many others? By coal-fired CO2 emitting power stations.
      Don’t forget the extra cars on the roads using
      fossils fuels.
      We have changed the balance between green plants recycling CO2 from the atmosphere and our consumption of O2 from the atmosphere.
      Result:- an increase in CO2 levels and it’s resulting effect on our climate.
      Hopefully you can see that it is not a ploy but a real issue which needs to be confronted now!
      We must not be selfish.

    • I agree Fay but when a tax is introduced alarm bells start ringing. You can bet Al Gore is not in this for the good of man kind or Obama and most of the others.

    • it’s obvious that you don’t live next door to a smoking chimney, especially when the timber is wet and one doesn’t know if the logs came from a poisoned tree, not good!!

    • The CO2 is produced from carbon that was sequestered in fossil fuels over millions of years. It was thus excluded from the environmental cycle until we introduced an excessive burden by burning fossil fuels etc.

    • Has anyone thought about water and what it is made up of. The doomsayers are saying that the water level is going to come up so that must increase o2 levels which maybe goes against the theory of co2 as this may counter balance it maybe. So as long as we have water there is hope do you think. There is always two sides to a conspiracy theory.

    • Havn’t they worked out that the oceans are absorbing this excess co2 gas and that those oceans are becoming acidic ??????

    • Stop cutting down world Forrest Increase planting. Any revenue raise will not go to help solving the issue it will get siphoned off. Look at history on similar issues.

  8. Why is it when talking about coal fired generation and climate change , they show clouds of steam from cooling towers not smoke rom coal fires ?

    2 REPLY
    • Because many reporters don’t know the difference 🙂 Also of course you do not see the smoke as that is particulate matter that has been mostly filtered out of the exhaust gases of power stations.

    • John, I’m sure the reporters know the difference between emissions from the chimney (which is barley visible) and steam from the cooling towers. It just doesn’t fit the ideology.

  9. We will never achieve this until we have a serious conversation about Nuclear Power. Alas the two parties in parliament don’t have the guts.

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