Carbon Economy


Coal baron slams Maurice Newman

Really, I thought our Maurice did a great job of slamming himself but Fairfax has made sure of it: The Abbott government’s chief business adviser Maurice Newman’s latest contribution to the national debate urges us to prepare for global cooling. Global warming has supposedly paused for the past 18 years and Newman’s preferred scientific advisers


Welcome to the carbon price gouge

From the ABC: The WA Government has refused to commit to removing an extra charge added to public transport fares when the carbon tax was introduced. In 2012, the Government said public transport fares would jump 1.5 per cent to recover the estimated cost of the carbon tax. Opposition transport spokesman Ken Travers said it


It’s crazy politics alright, Dick

There’s nothing like the smell of a plutocratic barny in the morning. From the chairman of the Government’s Renewable Energy Target (RET) review, Dick Warburton: The RET review, due to be handed to the federal government in the next two weeks, is expected to reduce the minimum amount of Australia’s electricity required to be produced from clean


Libertarians are unable to see climate change

By David Collyer, cross-posted from Prosper Prime Minister Tony Abbott and his government do not believe in climate change. They have erased all of the measures Rudd and Gillard introduced to shift Australia to a low-carbon future. If they merely doubted climate change, they would simply zero-price the behavior-changing settings and await more information. This


The long dark carbon tunnel ahead

Two pieces this afternoon sum up what I’m thinking but am too disenfranchised to write. Bernard Keane of Crikey captures my feelings: The carbon price is dead. Australia thus slips back into its pre-2007 role as an active opponent of serious action on climate change, having removed a functional, effective and low-impact carbon pricing scheme and replaced


Inexplicable freeze in renewable investment

In case you’re wondering about the strength of the Government’s anti-climate change agenda, consider this: Australia’s investment in renewable energy all but dried up in the first half of 2014 amid uncertainty fuelled by the government’s latest review of the mandatory target, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. In the six months to June, just


Garnaut: why Australia is out-of-step on carbon

Cross-posted from The Conversation: Ross Garnaut was the architect of the Labor government’s carbon pricing scheme, which looks likely to be scrapped this week despite last week’s brinkmanship in the Senate. The Conversation asked Professor Garnaut where this leaves Australia on the world stage, whether we have any tools left to cut greenhouse emissions, and


The Coalition’s carbon debacle for business

Citi nicely captures everything that’s wrong with the Coalition’s carbon policies today: Huge Uncertainties — There remains considerable uncertainty around whether and in what shape the repeal bill, and the government’s proposed Direct Action scheme bill, will be enacted. Running company valuation scenarios seems unproductive, given the rapidly moving political landscape. On balance, we expect  the


Climate Clive back flips on carbon price

From Crikey’s Bernard Keane: … in Clive Palmer, the Coalition faces someone who makes Abbott look like he has a maniacal obsession with consistency. The key to understanding Palmer is that he’s always about what’s ahead. What’s in the past is irrelevant. The issue of consistency simply doesn’t arise, because Palmer eternally moves forward, toward the


Climate, nation forgotten in policy scab grab

Careful what you wish for. From the AFR: A key business organisation, the Australian Industry Group (AIG), said the entire business community was frustrated at the prospect of yet another ­policy vacuum on climate change, saying it would only increase business uncertainty, create a perception of risk, and affect investment decisions. “Everyone in the business


Prepare for sweet FA carbon discounts

Ready yourself for the great disappointment of no carbon price: Qantas Airways has officially abandoned a “carbon surcharge” on its domestic and regional fares in anticipation of the likely repeal of the carbon tax. However, the move is unlikely to result in lower airfares because the airline said the competitive nature of the domestic aviation


Coalition carbon obsession risks it all

Last night the world’d most prominent conservative commentator, the FT’s Martin Wolf, wrote that: We do not have a Chinese or an American atmosphere. We have a global atmosphere. We cannot run independent experiments upon it. We have instead been running a joint experiment. This was not a conscious decision: it happened as a result


Who wins if the RET is cut?

You may recall that recently the Federal Government’s own modelling (from ACIL Tasman)  showed that dumping the Renewable Energy Target would cost consumers a lot more in the long run. More modelling along those lines arrives today via Paddy Manning at Crikey:   There are tens of billions of dollars and perhaps hundreds of millions of tonnes of


Tony Abbott’s carbon war shifts to renewables

Prime Minister Tony Abbott is determined to rid Australia of all carbon mitigation it seems. From the AFR: Tony Abbott has sparked a war with the renewable energy sector by claiming their product was driving up power prices “very significantly” and fostering Australia’s reputation as “the unaffordable energy capital of the world”. …The attacks came


The Libs betrayal of carbon markets

From the AFR’s John Kehoe: Former US Treasury secretary Hank Paulson, a long-time Republican who served in the Nixon and Bush jnr administrations, likened the emerging climate change “bubble” to the financial risks that built up under his watch before the 2008 crisis. …“Risk management is a conservative principle, as is preserving our natural environment


With respect, what is Al Gore on?

Al Gore continues to weigh into the Australian climate debate and not in an altogether constructive fashion. From the News: AL GORE has warned Tony Abbott to “change or get out of the way” of sensible environmental policy, labelling the Prime Minister a “straight-out climate denier”. Speaking to Vice after forging an unlikely alliance with Clive Palmer,


Premature celebration on carbon renegade

It seems the Abbott Government’s celebrations upon repealing the carbon tax might have been premature (via MB reader Disco Stu): According to The Australian today, several Senate cross-benchers have threatened to vote against the carbon tax’s repeal unless the Government extends subsidies to the automotive industry, which are slated for abolition once the local industry


Is Clive the climate king or clown?

Well, what can I say? From the AFR: Clive Palmer has thrown the government’s carbon tax repeal plans into ­disarray by teaming up with former US vice-president Al Gore to demand Australia be part of a global emissions trading scheme which doesn’t exist. In an announcement in Canberra on Wednesday night, which the government said it


Hottest global May on record

From Bloomie: The average temperature of Earth’s surface last month exceeded all other Mays before it, since record keeping began in 1880, according to new data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association. The monthly temperature was 1.33 degrees Fahrenheit higher than the average May. That may not seem like much, but on a planetary scale, it’s


Palmer passes carbon tax repeal

Fuck off you green-lefty scum, it’s over. The carbon price is gone: Clive Palmer is set to agree to the repeal of the carbon tax but the government may face a fight to abolish related elements of Labor’s clean energy package, with crossbench support for retaining the profit-making Clean Energy Finance Corporation. Mr Palmer and


Fiji slams “selfish” Australia for letting it sink

Courtesy of the ABC Australia Network: Fiji’s interim prime minister Frank Bainimarama has accused the global community of abandoning Pacific island nations to “sink below the waves” instead of tackling climate change. Opening a regional summit, he singled out “selfish” Australia for criticism, saying there is “collective disappointment and dismay” in the Pacific at the


Australia’s economy to suffer if it falls behind on climate action

Cross posted from The Conversation: by Martjin Wilder Australia’s economy faces grave threats from climate change, but the greatest threat is if we do not make a serious effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. It’s not just the physical impacts of climate change that will hurt Australia’s economy. In a new report released today by the Committee for Economic Development


Wind farmer threatens Hockey with bull

The Canberra Times is carrying a story striking back at Joe Hockey’s utterly offensive recent comments about wind farms: The Bungendore farmer hosting wind turbines that Joe Hockey says are utterly offensive is challenging the Treasurer to a bull fight. Luke Osborne says George, his prized Angus bull, who has lived peacefully under the turbines for years,


Hockey: Wind power “utterly offensive”

Our Treasurer has tendency towards bluster and today he’d done himself no favours. From the ABC: Federal Treasurer Joe Hockey says he finds wind turbines “utterly offensive”, but is powerless to close down the ones operating outside Canberra. Speaking to Macquarie Radio, Mr Hockey was being asked about whether the Government would target clean energy


Green energy packs its bags

From the AFR‘s Chanticleer today: Contrary to popular opinion, leading businessman Dick Warburton does not have any pre-determined views about the future of Australia’s $20 billion Renewable Energy Target scheme. While it is reassuring he is determined to be completely impartial in his rapid fire review of the RET scheme, Warburton makes it clear in an