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John Passant

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December 2013



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My interview Razor Sharp 18 February
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp on Tuesday 18 February. (0)

My interview Razor Sharp 11 February 2014
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp this morning. The Royal Commission, car industry and age of entitlement get a lot of the coverage. (0)

Razor Sharp 4 February 2014
Me on 4 February 2014 on Razor Sharp with Sharon Firebrace. (0)

Time for a House Un-Australian Activities Committee?
Tony Abbott thinks the Australian Broadcasting Corporation is Un-Australian. I am looking forward to his government setting up the House Un-Australian Activities Committee. (1)

Make Gina Rinehart work for her dole

Sick kids and paying upfront


Save Medicare

Demonstrate in defence of Medicare at Sydney Town Hall 1 pm Saturday 4 January (0)

Me on Razor Sharp this morning
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace this morning for Razor Sharp. It happens every Tuesday. (0)

I am not surprised
I think we are being unfair to this Abbott ‘no surprises’ Government. I am not surprised. (0)

Send Barnaby to Indonesia
It is a pity that Barnaby Joyce, a man of tact, diplomacy, nuance and subtlety, isn’t going to Indonesia to fix things up. I know I am disappointed that Barnaby is missing out on this great opportunity, and I am sure the Indonesians feel the same way. [Sarcasm alert.] (0)



Global emissions on the rise

As UN climate talks began in Warsaw, writes Kate Jeffreys in Red Flag, Philippines chief delegate Naderev Sano addressed the conference on Typhoon Haiyan. “I speak for the countless people who will no longer be able to speak for themselves after perishing from the storm”, he said. “We can take drastic action now to ensure that we prevent a future where super typhoons become a way of life.”

Sano, on hunger strike in solidarity with those impacted by the typhoon, broke down during his address. He explained that some of his relatives were still missing in devastated Tacloban. The typhoon is a grim reminder of the consequences of climate change. As representatives of the developing world argued during the Warsaw talks, global warming will result in more and more extreme weather events like Haiyan.

Throughout the talks, world leaders once again showed their indifference to environmental destruction and its human costs. Japan – the world’s fifth largest greenhouse gas emitter – dispensed with plans to cut greenhouse emissions by 25 percent relative to 2005 figures, in favour of a meagre 3.8 percent reduction.

Climate Action Tracker, a group of climate scientists and analysts, accused the Canadian government of “playing with numbers” on emissions reduction claims.

And the Australian government didn’t even bother to send a minister to Warsaw – sparing the conference delegates any more of environment minister Greg Hunt’s Wikipedia-based “insights” into climate change and catastrophic weather events.

Drawing on data from climate researchers in 10 countries, the Global Carbon Project found that emissions rose by 2.2 percent in 2012 and will rise by another 2.1 percent this year. Projections indicate a record 36 billion tonnes of CO2 will be released into the atmosphere in 2013 – an increase of more than 60 percent since 1990.

For its part, Australia released 371 million tonnes of CO2 in 2012. While Tony Abbott claims that he will follow through with Australia’s utterly inadequate commitment to reduce emissions by 5 percent by 2020, Climate Action Tracker predicts that under Liberal Party environment policy, Australia’s emissions will instead rise by 12 percent in this period.

The Abbott government has pursued an aggressive policy of environmental backwardness. It has abolished the Climate Commission and begun the process of shutting down the Climate Change Authority. Abbott also dispensed with the minister for science. And while Australia’s carbon emissions rose under the carbon tax, and big polluters benefited from its windfall profits, the abolition of the tax is largely seen as an attack on any notion of environmentally progressive policy.

Among the Philippine survivors of Haiyan, more than 12,000 people have arrived in Manila – climate refugees from the death and chaos of the typhoon. Staying with relatives or in temporary shelters, they are now forced to choose between returning to hometowns reduced to rubble and staying in the capital with few prospects.

As a world leader in brutal refugee policies, the Australian government shows how an inhumane system treats desperate people.

We need systemic change to prevent millions of climate refugees from suffering these degradations in the future.



Comment from Lorikeet
Time December 16, 2013 at 3:17 pm

As far as I’m concerned, it’s a big stretch to blame changes in the climate on human emissions. I’m sure I read that there have been 7 mini Ice Ages in the last 100,000 years. These were no doubt caused by volcanic eruptions and ash clouds blocking the sun.

The Climate Change Religion is one that will increase corporate power and bank domination of the masses.

It is also one of the mechanisms of global wealth redistribution, out of the hands of the poor and the average, and into the hands of a thin upper crust of rich people.

It is also driven by the superannuation industry.

Comment from JLD
Time December 20, 2013 at 12:47 pm

In response I would like to highlight the drawing together of Australia’s two most pressing political issues – asylum seekers and climate change. Without Government action targeting Australia’s largest polluters carbon emissions will continue to increase having economic and social impacts. The DCCEE estimates the future cost of climate change to be $226 billion on Australian assets. In contrast the expected revenue from the Carbon Pricing Scheme is $2.1 billion. It is widely recognised that climate change will impact on low income households disproportionally in Australia and around the world. People with a lower income will face greater hardship when displaced due to extreme weather events and rising sea levels. The future cost of failing to reduce carbon emissions will be economically damaging for Australia. The government is taking small steps towards large and fast moving issues.

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