Leader With Head In The Sand

It is incredulous that a leader of a developed nation, an affluent one at that, has consigned to the dustbin what the IPCC has described in the latest Assessment Report 5 as a deeply urgent need. The world must stop the growth of fossil energy resources, it must wind back their use, and it must leave them in the ground.

But this leader stated the following …

Coal is good for humanity. Coal is an essential part of our economic future.

It is very important we sustain our faith in coal. Coal is good for Australia.

The Courier Mail, October 13, 2014

You now know who that leader is. Prime Minister Tony Abbott.

It was at the opening of yet another coal mine in Queensland that the PM took a swipe at Australian National University superannuation fund for divesting itself of fossil fuels, just like the Rockefeller Foundation did a short time ago, and just like a number of major international banks and investment institutions have in recent times.

But Mr Abbott didn’t leave it there. He then took a swipe at China which is planning to impose a tariff on imported coal. 

Now, Mr Abbott has an economics degree, but in my view he has not one iota of understanding of the costs of greenhouse gas emissions on the economy, on society, and on the environment. These costs are rising exponentially as each year passes with no concerted action to decarbonise the economy.

China knows it has a massive air pollution problem. Its economy is in transition away from fossil fuels. It will take decades. China is also undertaking several emissions trading schemes. So, what happens when a country with an ETS or some form of carbon price, trades with another that has no greenhouse gas emissions price?

The recalcitrant country will be taxed. It is what economists call a “border tax”.

Is this what China is likely to impose? Is this what Europe is likely to adopt once its ailing economy is back on track?

It will possibly all play out in 2015 in the next round of climate negotiations.

Mr Abbott is taking a very big risk in not embracing the new economic advantages presented by the renewable energy sector. His rhetoric and praise about coal will be listed in the history books for myopia and bias.   

 Terms Of Service & Conditions Of Use          Privacy Policy          Site Map          Contact

Copyright © D N Menz    2009 - 2017