Rural Liberals want to take climate policy back to square one: Inquiry into science | RenewEconomy

Rural Liberals want to take climate policy back to square one: Inquiry into science

Terrible fortnight for Australian climate policy capped off by reports rural Liberals want inquiry into the science behind the theory of man made climate change.


Australian climate change policy – and its contribution to global climate action – looks set to take another Giant Leap Backwards this week, with reports emerging that the Liberal Party’s regional committee will call for an examination of the science behind the theory of anthropogenic global warming at a conference this weekend.

The ABC reports that the Liberal Federal Regional and Rural Committee plans to move a motion at the conference calling for a parliamentary inquiry to “examine the scientific evidence that underpins the man-made global warming theory and investigate the reasons for the failure of computer models, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and prominent individuals to predict, among other things, the pause in global warming this century”.

Worryingly, the motion will also recommend that “in light of the uncertainty around this issue, Australia does not sign any binding agreement at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris later this year”.

Liberal Party Federal Regional and Rural Committee chair Brian Mayfield (left), with anti-wind WA Liberal Senator Chris Back and Tasmanian Liberal Senator Richard Colbeck

The recommendation offers a stark contrast to reports this week that the Abbott government was weighing tougher emissions reduction targets for the post-2020 period, in an effort to restore Australia to the international mainstream on climate policy in time for that same December Paris meeting.

The motion, if it is moved, would cap off a bad few weeks for progressive political thinking in Australia; kicked off by the Prime Minister’s astonishing anti-wind musings and frank assessment of his party’s views on the Renewable Energy Target.

The establishment, today, of a legally binding RET could pass as a positive – in terms of generating investment certainty for the beleaguered renewables industry – but only if you ignore the fact that it makes Australia the first developed country to downsize its target, adding to its honour of being the first to dismantle a carbon price.

As reported here today, the new bill will cut new investment in renewables by around $5 billion, just as the world accelerates its investment in wind farms, with more than $US3.7 trillion to be spent on solar alone in the next two decades, and $US8 trillion overall, according to a new report by Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

The legislation also allows native wood waste to be burned and included in the target, and introduces a “wind commissioner” to deal with the complaints against turbines being aired and expounded upon in the current Senate Inquiry into wind farms.

In its efforts to answer questions about the possible health effects of wind turbine noise on nearby residents, the Inquiry has succeeded mainly in outing the numerous conscientious objectors to wind energy – and their outlandish views on the subject – that populate the cross-benches as well as the Coalition ranks.

This, and the Abbott government’s stubborn refusal to take climate change seriously, look more and more embarrassing and isolated against the vast global majority; with the exception, of course, of the US ultra-conservative Republicans, whose collective scetpicism of climate science was recently labelled a “national embarrassment”.

Screen Shot 2015-06-24 at 11.12.08 am
Headline from satirical news website, The Onion, last week.

“One of the embarrassments that goes on in this country today is that we have a major political party called the Republican Party that is rejecting what the overwhelming majority of scientists are saying,” Independent Vermont Senator, Bernie Sanders, said on the weekend.

“That is, of course, climate change is real and caused by human activity,” said Sanders, a 2016 Democratic presidential candidate. “That’s an issue we’re going to talk about a whole lot.” Indeed.

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  1. Beat Odermatt 5 years ago

    Is there anything more stupid then that?

    • Chris Fraser 5 years ago

      Let’s not judge .. we want to read the minutes of proceedings first.

      • Beat Odermatt 5 years ago

        Yes, I do judge when elected people stop working for the future of Australia and tap an unlimited source of stupidity to justify their existence. If you believe in all issues about climate change or not, we must move towards a low carbon economy for our grandchildren’s sake. It seems Abbott and some ultra conservative supporters of the flat earth theory are desperate to put Labor back into Government.

        • Chris Fraser 5 years ago

          Yes, Naturally … but i just thought the speeches would be quite funny …

          • Beat Odermatt 5 years ago

            I don’t mind watching comedies but not tragedies. These people may look like comedians but provide only tragedies.

    • mick 5 years ago

      mate sadly I think its just herd mentality

  2. barrie harrop 5 years ago

    These clowns should study this report released today, it seems contrary to Aust PM view “coal is not so good for humanity”.

    “Climate change presents ‘potentially catastrophic’ risks to
    public health, Lancet Commission study finds”

    • howardpatr 5 years ago

      Abbott and the bulk of the LNP Government ignore scientists, economists and Abbott’ spiritual/faith leader on climate change so there is little likelihood of them taking note of the medical profession.

  3. Alex 5 years ago

    I am not a proud Australian today. My countrymen voted these idiots in? Even calling them idiots is an insult to idiots.

  4. suthnsun 5 years ago

    Hubris, deeply misguided self interest? , whatever it is , it’s astonishing that feeble minds like this are entrusted with running our country. WAKE UP AUSTRALIA!

  5. howardpatr 5 years ago

    Fair to assume the Member for Hume, Angus Taylor, will provide his support to this group of Liberal Luddites. He might get “Stop These Things” members to oppose solar technologies as well as wind turbines, especiaaly if there towers involved.

  6. bill 5 years ago

    Is that a really bad picture… or are those 3 guys actually that butt ugly?

  7. Miles Harding 5 years ago

    So, the LNP ‘Moron Squad’ is closing ranks to repel all facts, not consistent with their peculiar world view which is at odds with all science and informed opinions. Shamefully, Labor appears to be helping with the drawbridge.

    Amazingly, these are rural libs. Aren’t they even a little curious about what the weather is doing these days? Seemingly not.

    If we follow the three phases of transformational change; Ridicule then Violent opposition and finally Acceptance as self-evident, then it would appear that Ridicule has passed and the LNP is now in the Violent opposition phase. Perhaps some progress has been made (??).

    Not only are facts being repelled, but logic are reason are also being excluded. This allows rational arguments to be easily defeated by distortions of fact, science and regurgitation of outrageous rubbish.

    There doesn’t seem to be much answer to this particular strain of fact resistant human, except to keep pushing them into increasingly contorted positions so they look like fools.

    In the mean time, clinging to coal will allow Australia to completely miss the opportunities of this century.

  8. Neil_Copeland 5 years ago

    Quite obviously only the village idiots were available for LNP candidates in these regional constituencies.

    • Miles Harding 5 years ago

      The gene pool is looking rather shallow.

  9. Chris Fraser 5 years ago

    Is that so ? A few pissant conservative climate dinosaurs are going to refute 300 years of greenhouse theory in a weekend ? Count me in ! They must really believe they actually have concerned voters in their jurisdictions who want them to do this.

    • Miles Harding 5 years ago

      No, no — just a concerned coal mine!

  10. Errol Harwood 5 years ago

    This only adds to my conclusion that for one to be nominated as a Liberal or National Party candidate there must be no signs of intelligence in the prospective candidate and they must be locked into the 18th or 19th Centuries. I am sure that the Labor party is much better

  11. Alan 5 years ago

    Who are the real “terrorists” in Australia? These guys will be responsible for more deaths than all other threats combined.

  12. Peter 5 years ago

    Just when I think the LNP can’t surprise me any more….
    I hear that this inquiry is going to be ‘peer reviewed’ – by Lord Munckton non the less!

    • john 5 years ago

      I do get the satire well said Peter

  13. Krispijn Beek 5 years ago

    A Dutch judge today ordered climate change is real and government must act upon it. See also the coverage on RTCC:
    It’s a long shot, but more case are in the making. Amongst others in Belgium and Philippines.

  14. john 5 years ago

    The only conclusion that can be made is that our society is really dumbing down to the lowest common denominator.
    Undoubtedly helped by no news feed both by Television and Newspapers.
    With science reporting removed from papers and as to Television only looked at as some kind of curiosity in labs.
    Rush headlong backwards Stralya

  15. Rob G 5 years ago

    Liberals = Climate denier.

    Wilful ignorance to what gain?

  16. John McKeon 5 years ago

    We are now into June of 2015. Three decades of warnings by experts.

    I am reminded of the political manipulation technique known as “paralysis by analysis”.

  17. Alan S 5 years ago

    The Libs love digging themselves into deep holes don’t they? Keep going and they’ll eventually strike coal.

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