Australia, despite its rhetoric, stills see climate policy through a haze of pollution—only dimly seeing the costs and none of the opportunities.
United Nations-sponsored climate talks in Lima have ended in agreement, but whether it sets the stage for a new treaty strong enough to compel sufficient collective action to address the threat of climate change remains an open question.
New research shows that Australia could meet its climate targets and still lift industrial and energy emissions by half since 1990. The issue has become a sore topic at Lima, where Australia has picked up its 5th Fossil of the Day award from exasperated green NGOs.
Julie Bishop tries really hard in Lima to convince people that Australia is doing its fair share on climate. She even indicated Australia may have to be flexible on the issue of binding agreements.
Australia does a backflip on climate finance. Perhaps it realises that something is happening in Lima—something really big. And that something could, in the not-too-distant future, leave Australia landscape littered with stranded assets.
For the first time, the goal of phasing out fossil fuels by 2050 is in the draft text being debated at COP20 in Lima. What is an Abbott minister to do?