JoNova

A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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Secret deal: Australia already has an ETS – carbon tax – starts in 5 weeks

Get ready. The legislation was done on the last day Parliament sat in December. The Coalition government knew it would be popular with the voters who all want “carbon action” so they… buried the news. No cheering. No speeches.

It apparently starts on July 1, and applies to 150 companies — about half our emissions. It’s a Cap N Trade system with “Caps” that can be screwed gently down as the climate warms to fill government coffers and raise electricity prices.  The Direct Action plan auctions can be phased out and the SneakTax phased in. It could end up being the main game. A blank cheque.

It’s called “Safeguard” — it was safe for politicians and guards them against their failure to meet pointless, symbolic international agreements to slow storms. A Safeguard for politicians but a SneakTax for the people.

What does it mean? It’s time Australia got a new central political party.

Alan Kohler in The Australian

From July 1, coincidentally the day before the election, the Coalition’s “safeguard mechanism” within its Direct Action Plan will come into force.

One-hundred and fifty companies, representing about 50 per cent of Australia’s total carbon emissions, will be [...]

Delcons: Might be a million votes that don’t matter

There is a voting block in Australia that is ignored and disorganised, but ready to be galvanized. It’s part of a worldwide phenomenon. Readers who havent read the first post on the Delcons  phenomenon ought start there.

An election is likely to be called any day. There are 15 million voters enrolled in Australia. If  4% of Liberal-Nat voters are Delcons, that’s about 2% of the total voter pool or 300,000 people who don’t matter. And that’s a conservative, pardon the pun, estimate. Another 10% of Liberal voters said they are “a little less likely” to  vote for the Liberal Party at the next election. These voters are not lost from the leftie end of the Liberal Party fan club. Potentially there are another 750,000 who could be convinced to instead vote National, ALA, Lib Dem, Family First or some other option should it appear. All up, these 14% of Lib voters have a million votes and are the most passionate sixth of Liberal supporters.

What could possibly go wrong?

Picture 300,000 less Liberal donors, volunteers, scrutineers, and people to hand out how-to-vote cards at 7,000 polling booths on July 2nd. Imagine 300,000 fewer website commenters willing to defend [...]

Delcons, Defcons, and elections in Australia 2016

With an election likely for July 2nd, the hottest topic in Australian politics right now is how to vote. So put your best case forward here. Hammer this out. Will Turnbull promise anything to win back the Delcons — the angry conservatives? The time to ask is now, and if the Liberal base are not prepared to vote against him, they have nothing to negotiate.

“Better to have a real conservative opposition than a fake conservative government.”

The elephant in 2016 is the ferocious boiling anger among betrayed conservatives and small government libertarians, divided over whether they can bear to vote for Turnbull (a Liberal*) who has been called the best leader the Labor Party never had. Delcons was tossed at the so-called “Delusional” Conservatives. But they took up the badge. Defcons means the Defiant ones.

Right now, and since September, I’m a Delcon, like Tim Blair, Merv Bendle, and James Allan. Convince me otherwise. (We love you Miranda but you are wrong.)

“As long as Turnbull is in charge there will be no real alternative for conservative libertarians.”

The issue: Is it better to vote for the lesser of two evils and hope a Turnbull-led party can be reformed [...]

Bill Shorten wants a lot of new carbon taxes and to help international bankers

 A gift for Turnbull, who doesn’t deserve it.

Welcome to Election-2016 in Australia.

We’ve done this before: Bill Shorten has promised there will be “no carbon tax under Labor”.  This almost exactly mirrors the promise made by Julia Gillard on her way to the most pathetic parliamentary win ever recorded in Australian history. Gillard’s barely-there-with-the-help-of-two-turncoats-success was based on this infamous deceit, which Mr Bill Shorten approved of and voted in. Channelling Gillard-2010

At least he is kinda upfront about saying there will be no tax apart from a lot of new taxes he calls trading schemes. What kind of trade are you forced by law to make? A tax…

“There will be no carbon tax under Labor, there will be no fixed price under Labor, what we are doing instead is we are working with the market to create an Emissions Trading Scheme,” Opposition Leader Bill Shorten said.

He is offering a kind of “Cap N Trade”, which is bound to suit all the Aussies who’ve been lining up at protests saying “No Carbon Tax. We want Cap N Trade”. Have you met one ? Me neither.

Let’s not forget the advantages of trading versus taxes: Markets are [...]

Poll: Australians more skeptical. Climate change “dropped off” political radar

In Australia the latest (unpublished) opinion poll shows concern about tackling climate change has fallen from 55% in 2007 to 35%.

Groupthinking struggles to understand:

The aversion to talking about climate change during the election campaign reflects a wider problem: our concern for this issue has fallen even while it has become larger and more urgent, writes Mike Steketee.

Climate change dropped off the political radar – ABC Drum

It sure does reflect a wider problem: that democracies need real public debate, real choice, and we are not getting it. Skeptics want climate change to be a voter issue — bring on a plebiscite. Let the public decide how much they should spend to change the weather. But that’s exactly what the believer politicians fear. They know they have to hide the topic because it’s electoral death. Everyone wants to stop pollution and “save the planet” — it’s motherhood and apple pie, but no one wants to pay much to try to change the climate. Eighty percent might believe the climate changes, but only12% want to pay two dollars to offset their Jetstar flight (and it’s less for Qantas). Therein lies a diabolical dichotomy.

[...]

NSW State branch of Liberals calls for National Climate Debate

As with the US, Australian conservatives are fed up with the pandering to the pompous climate scare. Our PM might “believe” but many conservatives and libertarians don’t. There is growing unrest.

Here is the NSW state branch calling for real debate — trying to rein in Turnbull:

NSW Liberals call for national debates on climate change science

Fairfax Media understands the motion passed with support of more than 70 per cent of delegates at the state council meeting held on the Central Coast last weekend.

A motion passed at the party’s state council calls on the government to “arrange and hold public debates/discussions” between scientists from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and “independent climate scientists”.

The motion says the events should cover ”the global warming/climate change debate”; ”the claims by the IPCC”; and the statement “is all the science settled”.

The motions - which were debated after Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull had left the room following his speech - reveal the level of climate change scepticism among the Liberal base in NSW.

Sources say Mr Turnbull – known to strongly support action on climate change - was heckled by sections of the party during his speech and a large section of delegates [...]

The carbon tax and ETS is right back on the agenda in Australia — thank Gore and Palmer

The political bomb is ticking again. Despite being slayed twice at Australian elections the ETS monster – the emissions trading scheme -  has popped back out of the box. This time around, Turnbull and co will not paint it as a big deal grand scheme, nor give it a proper name. It will be eased in under the radar as much as possible (as I predicted) being forced on only the worst “polluters” as a cheaper way to offset carbon emissions.

There’s a strange rush on in Australian politics to force Australian companies (and consumers) to send money to struggling bankers in Europe.

It’s only a few credits… Greg Hunt says overseas emissions credits will ‘probably’ be allowed

The environment minister talks flexibility in emissions targets as Coalition backbenchers mock international deal reached at Paris climate conference.

The Turnbull government will “probably” allow emission reduction permits to be bought from overseas, giving Australia flexibility to increase the targets it pledged at the Paris climate conference, Greg Hunt has predicted.

Right now, to avoid lighting the same fires that got Turnbull ousted in 2009, Turnbull and Hunt are pretending an ETS was a part of the Abbott [...]

Labor hope for fantasy 45% reduction in Australian emissions by … 2030

Australians keep voting against climate taxes, but in 2016 we’re having an election based on climate. (We get the choice of “Bad” or “Worse”. For the economy, it’s the TNT-plan or the Nuclear-bomb?)

The Liberals are offering the obscene cut of 26 – 28% from 2005 by 2030. As a nation dependent on fossil fuels, with no nuclear or no new hydro on offer, the target is ridiculous. With the most rapidly growing population in the West, and one of the most energy intensive export industries globally, it’s economically suicidal. The Labor Party have a fantasy that it should be 45%. (Why not 85%?)

As far as the election goes in 2016, our only hope is to elect minor party and independent Senators to stop our two main parties from  hobbling the nation. Start planning now.

According to the opposition spokesman Mark Butler on the 7:30 Report last night, the 45% fantasy will all be fine, because energy use and economic development will be “decoupled” (for the first time in human history) and new technology will save us. We’ll have profoundly different cars he says.

Look at what the last 15 years have done for cars…

Imagine how different cars [...]

Turnbull, Hunt suggest carbon emissions trading could start mid 2016 (Thank Gore and Palmer for the open door)

Australians have voted against a carbon tax twice. Liberals threw out Turnbull over the introduction of an emissions trading scheme in 2009, yet here he is, barely leader for two weeks and already they are floating a timeframe for the introduction of emissions trading.

I did warn that the Turnbull agreement  with the Nationals to keep Tony Abbott’s climate policies means almost nothing. It’s easy for him to keep the “target” and shift towards an Emissions Trading scheme (ETS) and he and Greg Hunt are suggesting that already.

Indeed, some of the fine print Turnbull probably wanted was already written in Abbott’s plan. Thanks to Al Gore and Clive Palmer, the possibility of emissions trading was left in the Direct Action legislation.Why else would Gore fly out here to stand next to a coal miner? And what did he offer Clive in return we wonder? Suddenly, Palmer demanded an ETS for his vote, but finally settled for a clause saying an ETS should be “reviewed” if our main trading partners brought one in. So Turnbull can technically keep the Abbott “plan” but entirely break the spirit of it. The Nationals (and 54 pro-Turnbull Liberals) will look like fools if they have [...]

Turnbull is already saying climate policies are “not set in stone”. Beware the emissions trading scheme.

It’s only been a week, and already the door is open to the emissions trading monster.  The Nationals may have got Turnbull to agree in writing last Tuesday that he would not change the Abbott policies, but writing things on paper is not enough, apparently it needs to be carved in stone.

If the member for Goldman Sachs still wants the fake “free” market solution — the one he threw away his leadership for in 2009  — he can keep the current coalition plan but use foreign credits to meet the targets. The global carbon market is the $2 Trillion dollar scheme to enrich financial houses, crooks and bureaucrats. It’s a whole fiat currency, ready-to-corrupt. The vested interests in this are knocking at every door. They’d be mad not too. But what kind of world do we want to live in? We don’t have to reward the do-nothing unproductive sector and the corrupt.

A carbon tax is a pointless waste, and the worst kind of carbon tax is a global trading scheme.

If Australians don’t want to be sold out in Paris, they need to protest now. I suggest writing to The Nationals, Libs, Nick Xenophon and media outlets.

Six [...]