Climate wars: CCA warns on action as Abbott's advisor rejects science | RenewEconomy

Climate wars: CCA warns on action as Abbott’s advisor rejects science

Australia’s independent climate policy advisor calls for stronger climate policies, while Abbott’s business advisor says climate science a con.


The Climate Change Authority says Australia needs to be prepared to take decisive action as the world moves towards ambitious abatement targets at next year’s international conference in Paris.

The CCA on Monday released a paper looking at the implications and requirements of an international agreement, and what that means for Australian climate policy, particularly in light of current moves to unravel the carbon price, the renewable energy target and other environmental initiatives.

bernieCCA chairman Bernie Fraser said the forthcoming conference was likely to be held in “rather more favourable circumstances” than the last in Copenhagen, which coincided with the early onset of the global financial crisis.

And, he noted, mainstream climate scientists had continued to strengthen their earlier findings on the links between human-induced increases in greenhouse gas emissions and the rise in average global temperatures.

The CCA has previously called for Australia to lift its target from emissions reductions of 5 per cent to more than 19 per cent by 2020, reflecting the increased ambition of major emitters such as the US, China and the EU, and other international action.

newmanHowever, as the CCA released its paper – the first of several planned for the next two weeks – Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s main business advisor, Maurice Newman, has again launched an extraordinary attack on the climate science.

In an article published in The Australian newspaper, Newman claims that the “wheels are starting to fall off the anthropogenic global warming bandwagon.”

In a collection of anecdotes seemingly compiled from the more notorious anti-climate blogs, Newman says climate science is not settled, and attacks “global warmists” – which in his estimate presumably include US president Barack Obama, China Premier Li Keqiang, UK prime minister David Cameron, and just about every other global leader apart from Abbott, Canada’s Stephen Harper and maybe Poland’s Donald Tusk.

“As the proof of human-induce­d global warming evaporates, an orchestrated push for more extreme policy action continuesm” Newman writes.

“The celebration of Australia’s 0.8 per cent drop in CO2 “pollution”, the biggest reduction in 24 years (subject to revision), didn’t satisfy the abatement zealots. They want higher taxes and more challenging targets.

“They seem oblivious to job ­losses, our already high energy costs and slipping international competitiveness. That the drop is utterly meaningless in a global context, or that CO2 is not a pollutant, does not deter them.

“Global temperatures have stopped rising. Their future direction is unknown.”

Newman is one of those instrumental in calling for the CCA to be dismantled – for fear that dissenting views are heard – along with every other part of the clean energy package put together by Labor and the Greens. So far, most of this has been held up in the Senate, but this could change when the new Senate takes shape in July.

The CCA, meanwhile, says that international action on climate change is squarely in Australia’s national interest. It will reduce the risks and likely impacts of climate change for Australia.

It notes that the Paris meeting in December 2015 will not deliver a binding agreement like Kyoto, but would focus on action rather than legal form,

“The best measure of success of the Paris meeting will be the extent to which it encourages and inspires stronger national action to reduce emissions over time,” it writes.

”A successful agreement would see countries committing to act, setting targets, and being transparent and open to review.”

And it says an international framework should support and encourage all major emitters – including Australia – to set fair targets and implement policies to meet them.

“Australia has played an active role at past international negotiations and, as a wealthy developed country and a high per capita emitter of greenhouse gases, it will be expected to carry a fair share of the post 2020 emissions reductions.”

Sadly, there seems little prospect of that. Abbott has sought to curry favour among other climate obstructionists such as Harper and Tusk, has refused entreaties to have the topic discussed at the G20 (apparently it is not an economic issue), and has instructed the country’s negotiating team to throw up obstacles at every turn in climate talks.

This comes as more Australia fossil fuel projects are abandoned in the face of an “energy revolution” in China, and elsewhere, and as Australia attempts to pull apart the renewable energy industry that seeks to take its place.

As Newman notes, Australia risks being left out in the cold on climate. But not for the reasons he thinks.

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  1. david_fta 6 years ago

    Maurice Newman is the last person that a responsible Prime Minister would want as business advisor, since he neither understands how the natural world works nor accepts that others do.

  2. Graeme Henchel 6 years ago

    The mendacious monk thinks climate change is crap
    Thinks there’s no need for an emissions cap
    Along with the hypocrite sycophant Hunt
    He wants to give Renewable Energy the shunt
    He owes his Prime ministership to the barons of coal
    Paying them back is his primary goal
    So he chooses advisors who are dodgy deniers
    So he can feed their rubbish to his cabinet of liars
    While the rest of the world is starting to act
    He tries to shore up a denialists pact
    Abbott the liar and Harper his chum
    An axis of idiots, dumber and dumb

    • John McKeon 6 years ago

      Graeme, I was going to say that Maurice is the greatest of the %@#*wits, but your little ditty is far more eloquent.

    • JonathanMaddox 6 years ago

      Move over Gina, here’s a bush poet with a conscience whose lines actually scan.

      Or is this meant to be hip-hop?

      • Graeme Henchel 6 years ago

        Thanks Jonathan. and I do live in the bush. This Abbott KAKISTOCRACY has bought out my inner poet. See more at

    • Graeme Henchel 6 years ago

      In Abbott’s world it’s quite routine
      To say black is white and brown is green
      In this world of deceit and distortion
      Words get twisted in all contortion
      The climate’s not changing
      The earth is flat
      Bronwyn’s not biased
      Joe is not fat
      Cuts are increases
      Co-payments aren’t tax
      Promises aren’t broken
      Who cares about facts
      Concoct a crisis where none exists
      Standard fare for mendacious sophists
      Claim to be the pensioners best friend
      When caught out just condescend
      When the lying impact starts getting weaker
      Morrison can bash an asylum seeker
      In Abbott’s world it’s quite routine
      To lie to the point of being obscene

      • zlop 6 years ago

        “The earth is flat”
        “President of real Flat Earth Society believes in the global warming”
        “such a group exists. It thinks the world is flat — but also getting warmer”

        • wideEyedPupil 6 years ago

          Run back to your master you grovelling troll.

          • zlop 6 years ago

            The president of the Flat Earth society did not want to
            be cited by Obama — “Obama: ‘We Don’t Have
            Time for a Meeting of the Flat Earth Society”

        • JonathanMaddox 6 years ago

          [citation needed]

    • wideEyedPupil 6 years ago

      Of course it’s true. The ABC is a lap dog on Climate Change and so many other issues today. All the lead presenters just play he said she said journalism when conducting interviews on the issue with denialists in government and jesters like Warburton. The fact that not one of them has successfully deconstructed Warburton’s mad rhetoric is less a testament to the complexity of Climate Change and more a testament to the lack of solid knowledge and confidence the ABC presenters have on the issue (I watched Alberici have half ago but quickly retreated to a “the experts say” position to which Warberton said “phooy the experts”). If the exact same CC scenarios eventualities were linked to an asteroid headed Earths way, these same journalists would be all over the minutiae of details about the situation and treating the issue far more seriously.

  3. zlop 6 years ago

    Science says — greenhouse gases Cool. a little.
    IPCC is a policymaking organization, deceives to increase taxation.

    • Dillon 6 years ago

      Care to link to some peer-reviewed scientific literature to back up your claim that greenhouse gases cool?

      • zlop 6 years ago

        High school Physics defeats peer reviewed
        IPCC Global Warming Professors.

        Below the clouds — radiative equilibrium.
        Increased greenhouse gas radiation to space, above the clouds,
        results in colder air — colder air lowers clouds,
        lower clouds imply lower surface temperature.

        • Dillon 6 years ago

          first of all, high school physics is not inconsistent with the IPCC’s reports on climate change. Recommend you have a read of the latest one.

          Second the IPCC does not carry out the science it simply compiles it to help policy makers make informed decisions. There are literally 1000s of peer-reviewed studies that show that climate change is occurring and is in a large part being caused by the release of greenhouse gases from burning fossil fuels and deforestation.

          Third you seem to misunderstand the greenhouse effect which works like this, incoming radiation from the sun hits the Earth’s surface and is re-emitted as infrared radiation, that infrared radiation is trapped by greenhouse gases in the atmosphere such as carbon dioxide and methane among other. This heats up the atmosphere. This process is critical to us here on Earth because if it didn’t occur the earth would be between 15 to 30 degrees cooler then it is now. So its a good thing.

          The problem is that we are releasing large amounts of these greenhouse gases into the atmosphere through the combustion of fossil fuels and deforestation which is increasing the amount of heat that is being trapped by the greenhouse effect. Hence the plant is warming up.

          Hope you will look into this a bit further, it’s a serious issue that we need to be tackling, to which solutions can be found and implemented that will improve the systems we have in place.


          • zlop 6 years ago

            “incoming radiation from the sun hits the Earth’s
            surface and is re-emitted as infrared radiation”

            Net heating of the atmosphere, is from above,
            where it is warmer than the adiabatic lapse.

            Near the surface, thermodynamic effects
            interact with and dominate radiation.
            Lapse is -g/Cp, independent of chemistry

            “the physical nature of the so-called GH effect is a
            Pressure-induced Thermal Enhancement (PTE), which
            is independent of atmospheric chemical composition”

          • Dillon 6 years ago

            The study you have linked too does not seem to be peer-reviewed so it is essentially useless. We need peer-review to make sure we have the highest levels of evidence and quality to the work. Skepticism is a fundamental part of science but it should be carried out in the scientific literature. So that we can make sure that the evidence wins out and we get the best model of reality that we can. Please try and go to the peer-reviewed scientific literature so we keep junk ‘science’ out of our thinking.

          • zlop 6 years ago

            “so we keep junk ‘science’ out of our thinking”
            114 out of 117 (97%) climate models were wrong.

          • Dillon 6 years ago

            Not sure where you are getting that figure from. Would be good if you could link to the source you got that info from. Recommend you have a read through this:


          • zlop 6 years ago

            Article from here “Study in journal Nature Climate Change:
            114 out of 117 climate model predictions from 1990′s wildly
            overestimated global warming”

          • Alen 6 years ago

            You need to realise that the models and scenarios are designed to be far ranging, so as to capture a wide range of possible futures, i.e. Different story lines, different emission levels..etc. the original projections were updated as science and information improved and evolved from the IS92 scenarios using SRES and now RCPs. These are designed to provide an indication of how the Earth will react or look like if the respective emissions were/are realised. Saying xx amount were wrong is not a revelation, as they as a group were designed to include many future possibilities (high emission, medium and low emission) and therefore most were knowingly planned to be ‘wrong’. But you have to include these scenarios in order to calculate your overall uncertainty.

            By the way, we are currently closely following one of the high emission scenarios in the SRES (A1FI)

          • zlop 6 years ago

            Built into the models is that CO2 warms.
            Thee is no evidence of warming by CO2.

            Only 2 variables (Solar Radiation and gGround Pressure)
            are needed to predict Global Average surface temperature.
            Yet, for political, policy making reasons, CO2 is included.

          • wideEyedPupil 6 years ago

            You guys realise that these comments by “zlop” are generated by bots or paid trolls with similar level of discretionary intelligence to bots, right?

          • zlop 6 years ago

            Global Climate Doom is serious. That is why the
            Koch Bothers hire Purple People eaters to stop the climate.

          • JonathanMaddox 6 years ago

            Nah. Asking for payment would not occur to a troll with a similar level of discretionary intelligence to a bot.

        • Max Boronovskis 6 years ago

          Ha ha, like scissors beats rock eh!

          • zlop 6 years ago

            Like, Common Core greenlights the greenhouse warming delusion, prevents understanding. 2+2=5 will help you get along.

  4. David H 6 years ago

    I am all for a cleaner environment and at some point technology, economics and rational thinking people will dictate the way forward, not government.

  5. Chris Fraser 6 years ago

    Haha. Yeah, Maurice … just keep denying all of it. Obviously ordinary observation doesn’t work.

  6. zlop 6 years ago

    “Global temperatures have stopped rising. Their future direction is unknown.”

    We are ready to slide into an Ice Age. Climate of Australia, like other
    tropical regions, will not be severely affected. However, some Northern
    counties will have to be abandoned, resulting in huge migrations.

  7. José Truda Palazzo Jr. 6 years ago

    Amazing how the extreme-right-wing Abbott government and the populist left Dilma Roussef of Brazil look alike on their medieval discourse and boycotts to international climate action. Apparently idiocy knows no ideological boundaries!

  8. Alan Baird 6 years ago

    Every so often we get conservative-reactionary people who should be printlessly ignored. They are simply “padding in the thread” rather than “thread in the padding” and can simply be skipped past using the scroller. They are a waste of print and time. They do not like real science. Like their leader, they are more likely to give extra monies for religion than for the CSIRO which they de-fund for cheap political revenge. The track record is there. Their fingerprints are all over the lying assertions. Their spokespeople are found in the Murdoch Press or on Macquarie Radio. What do you expect other than arrant bias? And of course, they accuse the milquetoast ABC of bias. Only those with an irony bypass could read the Tele. Rag. Dross.

  9. hippygreenieleftie 6 years ago

    Love it Graeme!
    The Winking Wanker is a great target for creative abuse.
    It all contributes to edging him out.
    “One term Tony” Abbouttface: hateful thug or driven, deluded, inadequate nincompoop.
    Whichever, he is manifestly flawed and unfit to govern.
    Crimes against decency.
    Crimes against humanity.
    Crimes against the planet and future generations.
    I despise him more than I did John Howard.
    Keep up the pressure!

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