What the hell was he thinking?

Looking for a great Christmas present idea? I’ve been enjoying the new glorious full-colour book covering the work and “why’s” of a great Australian cartoonist. There is still time to buy it for a friend, or put it on your list. Cartoonists have leeway to say what no one else will, and of cartoonists, there are few like John Spooner.

John Spooner’s Guide to the 21st Century:  What The Hell Was He Thinking


  If a scholar in two hundred years time happened to be regarding the intricacies of Australian political life at the turn of the 21st Century, they would find few better guides…. than the cartoons of John Spooner. — Gordon Morrison

John Spooner Cartoons. The last cartoon.

John Spooner’s last cartoon, 2016. The Age.

As well as being a collection of his work, a keepsake with over 250 images, Spooner explains what was going on in the editorial zone of one of Australia’s largest newspapers as it evolved over the last 40 years.

Spooner writes about how different things were in The Age in the 1970s. (It used to be a real newspaper once). He describes the gradual closing down of dissent from the party line. He worked under 13 editors, “but with ever diminishing approval.”

Climate denier, cartoon. John Spooner.

The book is not just about the agonies of a ‘denier’.

The importance of the media and the downfall of good journalism is one theme that runs through the book. In 1975 the editor of The Age which first employed Spooner was Graham Perkin. Spooner writes that there is a youtube of Perkin years later talking about how he defined the test of a good paper: “You must be prepared to ‘run stories which may offend readers, which may lose you readers, because you believe its in the public interest.’ This was “editorial courage”. Perkins insisted that The Age was the natural opponent of government because ‘no one else represents the public’. Imagine an editor saying that now?

We’ve lost that core philosophy:

“Wherever your viewpoint was, you had a place at The Age.”
“On great matters of social or political tension,
The Age could own the whole debate.”

Book Cover, John Spooner

It’s a coffee table book which will start conversations. But also a book to read with many  explanations and thoughts.

Spooner felt right at home back then. He worked for The Age for years and said “I believed in it as a force for good.” Saying that strong media is a way to fight back against “the bullies”.

Sadly, as Spooner kept raising difficult topics, and brought in the likes of Bob Carter, Bill Kininmonth, John McLean and David Evans (all skeptics) he and The Age were growing further apart. At one point a reader wrote that Spooner had a “manic obsession with climate denial” comparable to “alcoholism”, and the editor replied that he thought the reader ‘had a point’. All that, merely because Spooner thought there were things the public ought to know.

Notably, Spooner emphasizes that The Age allowed him to express his views most of the time, but it’s obvious that it was getting harder and rarer. The culture had changed.

At times, apparently, it was only the cartoonist at The Age who was asking hard questions. In a room of senior writers and editors Spooner questioned the team “How will The Age explain to its readers the deliberate energy price rises that we have advocated?”  No one had an  answer.

A smart cartoonist is a funny one

To be funny, you have to be one step ahead of the audience. You have to join two new dots. The humor is in the surprise.

Spooner is one of the few cartoonists on the planet who grasps the scientific detail. Indeed in this book he even describes water vapor feedback and its importance correctly. Outside of scientists, almost no one is able to weigh up the issues and recognize what matters. I am always impressed with the depth of his backgrounding and the aptness of his filter.

Cartoon, Climate Denier, Kevin Rudd, John Spooner,

For those who lived through the era of Bush-Obama-Rudd-Gillard-Abbott there is a suite of his most significant cartoons from his long history as well as his thoughts about the time.

 A cartoon too far

One cartoon that would never be published “depicts a destitute tree family begging for a spare molecule of CO2 from a harsh Dickensenian naysayer in 2030”. (When the Renewable Energy Target would have reached its goal). See below, with apologies for the dark poor rendition.

Spooner describes how if he had tried to use this, the editor would have had understandable dismay. If it were printed, “The letters page editor would “have been flooded with angry Get UP style denunciations.” In other words, the righteous indignation wears nearly anyone down. The hard path is to fight for unpopular views. The easy path is also the non-controversial, boring and predictable one. We need to teach children that.

Spooner Cartoon, That didn't make the cut, CO2.

Trees come begging for CO2 — a draft cartoon that would never be published at The Age. Click to enlarge.

The book has hundreds of cartoons on topics from Trump to economics, Sept 11, Islamic Terror and national debt. Cimate battles are one chapter.

From the editors:

During more than 40 years of drawing for The Age, Spooner has confronted some of the most controversial political, social and economic issues of our era. He explains how his views about journalism, political correctness, terrorism, free trade and global warming have gradually diverged from received wisdom.

Spooner seeks to clarify the position of so-called ‘climate deniers’, ‘protectionists’ and media ‘pluralists’. He contends that Australia’s one trillion dollar foreign debt, its ludicrous energy poverty and confusion about free speech are disappointingly linked to a decline in journalistic ideals.

In words and images Spooner hopes to answer the question ‘what the hell was he thinking?’ His book contains more than 250 cartoons, drawings, etchings and paintings.

The book is so much more than climate change.

John Spooner’s Guide to the 21st Century:  What The Hell Was He Thinking  $65

9.5 out of 10 based on 60 ratings

59 comments to What the hell was he thinking?

  • #

    There are no worries about not having any spare CO2. Plenty of new coal fire power stations are under construction and planned for many years if not decades to come. The real worry is will there be any spare electricity in Australia. I still wonder if many in the MSM and major political parties are the real enemies. I can’t see how anyone with a fair amount of logic, reason and intelligence could continue to promote renewables so fervently today as many do in both major parties and in the MSM given the ample amount of information at hand to expose the CAGW as a scam. Either that or they are mentally challenged. Either way they are extremely dangerous to our economic well being, and we will suffer the consequences if they are allowed to continue.


    • #
      Just Thinkin'

      To get the answer to many of your questions you probably
      need to have a read of this book, “MONEY LAND, why thieves and crooks now rule the world
      & How To Take It Back.”

      By Oliver Bullough (Profile Books)

      I’m only part way through and I can see what has been happening in Australia……


      • #

        Thanks but I wasn’t actually asking how they are doing it – I already know that. Most of my questions was purely rhetorical – I should stop doing it as I can see how it confuses some. I’m just wondering how widespread it is in the MSM and political scene. I suspect it’s far wider than most people think, and it’s getting more so with most people unaware of it happening right under their noses. Some though believe we can still turn things around. I tend to believe that’s impossible. The wave of evil is too strong. It will be defeated later but not until it has done enough damage to wake people up. Once the real evil is exposed to all then the real right begins. For now though too many are having so much fun they simply don’t give a damn.


        • #
          Latus Dextro

          Take heart PeterS, there simply won’t be enough piano wire or lamp posts in Christendom.
          For it may well not quite come to the devastation you suggest.
          Nature may have the monumentally inconvenient
          un grand surprise to deliver if Prof. Valentino Zharkova, Professor in Mathematics at Northumbria University (BSc/MSc in Applied Mathematics and Astronomy; Ph.D. Astrophysics)
          is on her mettle and the nail, although she is wisely virtue signals her belief in UNFCCC defined climatism.

          Meanwhile, some sound information and data, science at its best at Tony Heller:
          Fraud In The National Climate Assessment (Part 1)
          Fraud In The National Climate Assessment (Part 2)

          Merry Christmas!


        • #
          Roger Knights

          “The wave of evil is too strong. It will be defeated later but not until it has done enough damage to wake people up.”

          The wave in the United States hasn’t been deterred by Trump’s actions. It is sweeping through state and local governments, getting them to commit to a high percentage of renewables in the future, and to signing contracts to get there.

          The potential maximum size of a reactionary wave in five years or so is staggering. And it’s not something warmist crusaders have any precautions about.


      • #

        Just read at Morning Mail …

        “Malaysia has filed criminal charges against Goldman Sachs and two former executives for their role in the alleged multi-billion-dollar ransacking of state investment fund 1MDB. Attorney General Tommy Thomas said the Government is seeking several billion dollars in fines from Goldman Sachs for breaches of securities laws that involved it making false and misleading statements to investors. He said his office will seek prison sentences of up to 10 years for the former Goldman executives, Roger Ng Chong Hwa and Tim Leissner.”


    • #
      Another Ian

      To help you worry more about that spare electricity

      4 Charts Expose Abominable Inadequacy Of Europe’s Wind Energy …”Power Collapses Within Minutes”

      German wind energy opposition organization Vernunftkraft here posted some charts at Facebook showing just how abominably inadequate wind as a source of power really is. “Power collapses within minutes” The following chart shows the performance of wind energy for 15 European countries (shaded dark blue) and that of Germany (light blue) for the period May, 2018: ”

      Notrickszone via http://www.smalldeadanimals.com/index.php/2018/12/17/we-dont-need-no-stinking-giant-fans-11/

      And in comments

      “I love this line in the link “using it (wind power) is like hiring a worker who shows up for work only one day a week and nobody can say on which day and which shift.” “


    • #
      el gordo

      ‘I still wonder if many in the MSM and major political parties are the real enemies.’

      Put your mind at rest, the MSM has to take full responsibility for what has happened and their only defence is that there was a communications revolution and they lost their bulldog status.

      ‘Spooner seeks to clarify the position of so-called ‘climate deniers’, ‘protectionists’ and media ‘pluralists’. He contends that Australia’s one trillion dollar foreign debt, its ludicrous energy poverty and confusion about free speech are disappointingly linked to a decline in journalistic ideals.’


  • #
    Just Thinkin'

    An absolutely fantastic book….

    I highly recommend it. Very insightful……


  • #

    Warmist leaders can not be immune,
    To satire and mocking lampoon,
    But mostly they fear,
    That their head will appear,
    In a well illustrated cartoon.


  • #

    We are in the midst of a spritual battle.

    We have what appears to be occult driven world govts & occult-driven UN appear to be trying to take down monthestic religions, predominately Christianity.

    This explains what seems to be on the surface as “the Hand of Madness”, but IMHO, is in fact the forces of darkness attacking those who stand for God. The Gospel stands in the way of their coveted global darkness or New Dark Age….

    “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”

    ( Ephesians 6:12 )


    • #

      Yes the occult has a lot to do with it as it and other things are associated with and driven by demonic forces looking for weak-willed people.


      • #

        Look at which presidents and high US gov officials were members of ‘skull and bones’ whilst at Yale, one of the best recruiting places in the US university scene.


    • #
      el gordo

      Steve it has only recently come to my attention that all the church building in Medieval times was not because of global warming.

      Leading up to the millennium they were assured that Satan was returning and the end of the world was nigh, but fortunately this day of dread didn’t happen and the church building began in praise to the deity.


    • #
      el gordo

      Taking it further, this save the world movement (green slime) originated in Europe and it has all the hallmarks of a millennialist nightmare. Its an embedded cultural gene, a christian meme, but in the modern era its morphed into this unholy mess.


      • #

        I don’t think it was Europe. The economist Patrick Woods has other ideas
        which he discusses here. The ideas we are facing may have come out of Europe a long time ago, but, Woods claims they surfaced in the US in the 1930s to codification of them more recently by Zbigniew Brzeziński (recently deceased) and David Rockefeller. Both Woods claims were members if not founders of the Trilateral Commission. (Al Gore is also supposedly a member, which might explain a few things.) [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e8JRCoSgsUU].

        The “Fossil Fuels are causing CO2 which is going send us into a new Ice Age” of the 1970s was reworked into “Fossil Fuels are causing CO2 which is going to send us into runaway Global Warming.” and a certain William Connelly with others, (the et al Connelly et al) set about trying to rewrite Internet history. It was supposedly the same crew pushing both memes.

        Germany gave it a go in the 1930s and from what you can find out about those days, it was distinctly unpleasant and undesirable. We all know the outcome.
        Give Woods a hearing and see what you think.

        Personally, I strongly prefer my freedom of choice …


    • #

      I don’t mind the idea of standing against the forces of darkness, occult in either hand with the reigns between my teeth at full gallop……


  • #

    because you believe its in the public interest.

    Media is an interesting puppy. The question we probably need to be asking is ‘what role should media perform?’

    On one hand we have to remember that media is a business. You have a target audience and you should be attempting to sell to them. You need to write the content that your audience expects to read

    With this in mind I have no real problem with the direction of the Nine Papers. The Age and the Silly decided their market was the latte set of inner city elites and clearly write for those people. The fact that those sorts of people are unwilling to buy enough newspapers to keep the financial wolves from the door is possibly a flaw in their market research, buy hey, they made their bed.

    The other papers are more interesting in the way they break down their content. In my little electricity free home town of Adelaide we have The Advertiser as our daily. It is filled with one eyed sports reports about our Great South Aussie Teams and soft leftie rubbish. The owners however know they can do this as they know anyone wanting more serious business and political analysis is going to buy the Oz and hence they can structure their market and content to suit.

    “But!” I hear you cry. “What about the NEWS!?!”

    Well… what about it?

    There is the assumption that the media is responsible for providing the public with the news. However this raises many other questions. What is news? What is important news? Who really wants it and who gets to say what it is? Take these question in the context that media is a business and the question about if the public actually WANT news also crops up.

    Do you want news? Are you prepared to pay for it? Are you prepared to pay for it if the news annoys and angers you?

    Here we unfortunately need to mention the ABC. The ABC is NOT A BUSINESS. They do not need to sell their target audience the content they are prepared to pay for. They, unlike nearly all other media, need to report the facts as neutrally as possible and if they can’t then they need to be razed, have their lands sown with salt and their people sold off into slavery. Or sold to private industry… but personally I like the first plan better.

    So, at the risk of rambling on for longer, I give you the question – What Role Media?


    • #

      In a phrase – giving the public what it wants…..

      As I was discussing with my teenage daughter – dont rely on Society to set your values –
      because Society can devolve into a rather debased behaviour. I have mentioned unplesant society endorsed behaviour like pedastry practiced in ancient greek times, the human sacrifices by the Aztecs, and slavery practiced in countries around the world right up to the 1900s. Even now we have organized s*x slavery in europe, then add in govt regulated infanticide and rampant other s*xual practices that society has embraced currently – the bottom line is that Society is easily manipulated and can plumb the depths of depravity while considering it “normal”.


      • #

        S*x slavery is bad but how about the old style African slavery in Libya and North Africa that’s reappeared in recent years?

        Must be those rotten Buddhist’s acting up again…………./sarc. (if needed)


    • #

      Not many journos go against what there bosses tell them to publish and how or else they end up ‘down the road’. There are some that buck the change but they dont last. The media (Western) family tree goes to one top branch of control. What amazes me is that countries media the US and others dont like are refereed to as ‘state media’ well .. what about corporate controlled, owned media..ABC state controlled media? what else.


      • #

        What the USA has called HAARP ( all part of Scalar tech ), is what I’ve been telling people for a while now – the Chinese now openly are saying they have HAARP tech to modify the ionisphere to manipulate weather.

        This tech has been known about for 20+ years, but mention it in the West, and you get called a nut.

        Worth reading “Fer de Lance” by the late Lt Tom Beardon ( US Air Force, Ret).

        Scalar waves create potential differences, and can create endo-thermic or exo-thermic energy transfers, thus able to steer weather / tornados or potentially destroy missiles in flight.


        “China is building a powerful radar system in the South China Sea that critics say could knock out communication systems, manipulate the weatherand even cause natural disasters.

        The system, which sounds like something out of science fiction, uses pulsed energy beams to study and manipulate electrically charged particles in the high atmosphere.

        It has civilian and military applications and could challenge US dominance in both spheres.

        The US military has already been working on similar technology, but it has proved controversial with critics warning that it could allow governments to play God by causing disasters such as hurricanes, typhoons and tsunami.

        Most scientists have dismissed these warnings as alarmist, however, and questioned whether the technology is really capable of doing this.

        But while the American programme – funded by the air force, navy and universities – faces an uncertain future due to budget cuts, China is ready to speed up its own work in this field.

        The South China Morning Post has learned that Beijing is ready to start work building a powerful machine in Sanya, a resort on the island province of Hainan.

        The device, known as a High-powered Incoherent Scatter Radar, would be capable of influencing the ebb and flow of subatomic particles as far away as Singapore, a distance of over 2,000km (1,200 miles).

        The machine works by generating rapid pulses of electromagnetic energy and beams them into the ionosphere, a layer of the atmosphere that can reflect radio waves thanks to a high concentration of ions and electrons.

        By analysing the radio waves bouncing back off the particles, researchers can precisely measure the disturbance in the ionosphere caused by cosmic activity such as the sun’s rays.

        The data can also be used to correct the radar images collected by spy satellites to gather more information and focus more precisely on a specific target.

        By fine-tuning the high-energy beam, scientists could also stimulate the lower ionosphere to generate low-frequency waves and send these back to Earth.

        These waves can travel long distances through seawater and reach submarines in the deep ocean, which means the technology could be used to send instructions to the subs from the base without the need for them to approach the surface to receive them.”

        Now imagine what the Russians have……


      • #

        Many years ago I wrote a letter to a well known newspaper journalist complaining about the content of an article he wrote that was very clearly lacking facts and spinning deception.

        He wrote back and apologised to me explaining that he often has no choice but to write what his employer requires from him.


    • #
      Peter C

      What Role Media?

      Thanks mudcrab.

      Good question and good answers.

      You make a case for ABC news; because commercial media should tailor their content to their readers for commercial reasons (they have to sell their content) but the ABC should be impartial.

      Then against the ABC because they fail their charter and the public interest test.

      I agree that the ABC should go. There is enough commercial activity to cater for all views and provide actual news in the mix.


    • #

      Mudcrab says… ‘we unfortunately need to mention the ABC. The ABC is NOT A BUSINESS. They do not need to sell their target audience the content they are prepared to pay for. They, unlike nearly all other media, need to report the facts as neutrally as possible and if they can’t then they need to be razed, have their lands sown with salt and their people sold off into slavery. Or sold to private industry… but personally I like the first plan better.’

      Say, the ABC is weak, chuck ’em in the creek…, though fer their betrayal of free speech, I meself, personally, favour beheading.


    • #

      A book worth reading is The Electronic Whor*house writer by journalist Paul Sheehan.

      “Advertising presented as news” for example.


  • #

    Spooner’s book looks like it’s more fun than this!

    VIDEO 3min28sec: 17 Dec: KCTS9/PBS: When Turned Into Music, Climate Change Sounds Alarmingly Beautiful
    UW doctoral candidate Judy Twedt makes climate data into music
    By Sarah Hoffman
    While doing field work in the Arctic, University of Washington doctoral candidate Judy Twedt could see the impact of sea level rise, carbon emissions and rapidly disappearing sea ice firsthand. But communicating the urgency of that data to people outside the bubble of the scientific world remained a struggle.
    She found the answer in music.

    Twedt sonifies climate data — basically, she makes iconic or meaningful data sets audible by translating each data point into a note. When CO2 rises on a graph curve, the notes react by becoming high and screechy. As sea ice disappears, one hand replicates the sound of its diminishment by dipping into the low register of a piano while the other replicates a twinkling pattern that replicates repeating, shifting seasons.
    By using music’s unique ability to imprint on the human brain, Twedt’s result is a sonic map that can help us understand how climate change is upending our world, just by listening.


  • #
  • #

    The climate lunacy rattles on, Don Quixote-like……


    “Mass protests of the scale held during the Vietnam War are just around the corner for people concerned about climate change, environmentalists have warned, as a growing number of activists turn their attention to those who fund fossil fuel industries.

    Activists on Sunday disrupted Labor’s national conference in Adelaide to oppose oil drilling in the Great Australian Bight and the Adani coal mine in Queensland — two proposals considered “lightning rods” for unilateral climate protests.

    It happened weeks after thousands of school students defied Prime Minister Scott Morrison and marched on capital cities to demand significant action to reduce carbon emissions — surprising authorities with the number of participants involved.

    “The divide between the Government and the young people of Australia is probably the greatest it’s been since those huge protests of the Vietnam War era, and I think it’s for a similar reason,” Greenpeace chief executive David Ritter said.

    “Back then, 18 to 20-year-olds [facing conscription in the 1960s] felt their future was being callously taken away by a war they could see no justification or point for.”

    Hmmm…replace the vietnam war with the UN….

    “Back then, 18 to 20-year-olds [facing conscription in the 1960s] felt their future was being callously taken away by a UN/causethey could see no justification or point for.”

    There…fixed it…..


  • #

    May as well stick with the cartoons.

    I was trying to listen to France’s Le Figaro correspondent with others discussing the Yellow Vests on RT. Really, it was as bad as listening to Greg Sheridan or Paul Kelly pontificating for our faux-right or whoever the giant ABC would field for some equally pontifical nonsense (but with that special earnest tinge).

    The corporate media (RT included) are now saturated with agendas. It was not always so. There have always been agendas, but now it’s total saturation. You are never dealing with an informed individual. Never. You are dealing at all times with the representative of a globalist corporation, and usually that representative has full knowledge of his or her appointed role.

    The best the Figaro talking head could do was agree that mistakes were made before returning to his main points that the Gilets were a small and dwindling minority and that diesel had to go. Challenge him again and he’ll take you round in the same circle, with slight variations. He even had that Undead expression they all wear when faced with the possibility of debate. It says: “You can’t touch me. You’re lucky I even came. As one of the Undead I make more euros in my un-death than you can make in full life.”

    And if anyone disagrees with me, I’ve lost the satellite link and can’t hear a word you are saying. We’re not on satellite? Sorry, we’re out of time. Now about Megan and Kate being invited to appear on My Kitchen Rules…


    • #

      You have the essence of it down ferpectly. The Peasants are revolting, who was the fool who invented them? They’re just trouble makers …
      </sarc> (just in case).


      You did say the corporate media are now saturated with agendas. I beg to differ: they all look to me to be barely different facets of the same agenda


  • #

    Great cartoons! love it.


  • #

    what’s the German Ambassador doing in Pakistan with the Green Party’s Heinrich Böll Stiftung?

    18 Dec: The Nation Pakistan: ‘COP-24 not making headlines in media’
    Our staff report
    Islamabad – Why is the COP-24 taking place in Poland on climate change issues not making headlines in media, despite Pakistan being high on the vulnerability index of climate change? questioned Martin Kobler, German Ambassador to Pakistan.
    The Ambassador was speaking at an award ceremony held by Heinrich Böll Stiftung at local hotel here, titled, “Championing a Fair Future: Journalists on Climate Change & Resource Equity”.

    Heinrich Boell Stiftung (HBS) is a German Green Foundation operational in the country since the past 25 year’s on issues pertaining to ecology, democracy and human rights…

    Most recently, reporters carried out field visits in Khanpur, Quetta, Gilgit, Thar coal power project and Hunza partnering with organizations working on environment and sustainability. After community visits and immersive talks, journalists reported on several issues etc…
    Mome Saleem, head ecology programme and convener of the environmental journalists cohort of 90 members, gave an overview of this initiative and added that resource equity in any part of the world can only be achieved if the rights of nature and humans are recognized and secured. Gregor Enste, former resident director or HBS also saw the positive change in Pakistan he noticed, where citizens are taking charge of improving their environment.

    ***He also encouraged the journalists to turn to HBS for research support so that together the civil society and media could make this country and the globe a better place. He did however, caution about the worrying trend of casting aspersions on the organizations like HBS which have been investing in civil society and policy makers for informed decision making. He lamented the shrinking of space for alternate voices.


    Wikipedia: The Heinrich Böll Foundation (German: Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung e.V., HBS) is a German, legally independent political foundation. Affiliated with the German Green Party, it was founded in 1997 when three predecessors merged…
    The Heinrich Böll Foundation also has a scholarship programme for university and PhD students, as well as a research archive with a focus on new social movements, Green politics etc…
    The foundation, with headquarters in Berlin, operates 30 offices on four continents and has branches in each of Germany’s 16 states…
    The statutes drafted for this new unified foundation defined gender democracy and issues related to migration and diversity as key fields of activity…


  • #

    Yep us serfs are revolting against agendas, specifically U.N Agenda 21 and those dastardly Trilaterals. Now where did I put that hoe? ( Nuthin’ to do with Xmas.) https://beththeserf.wordpress.com/2018/11/01/55th-edition-serf-under_ground-journal/


  • #

    trillions for CAGW – ABC never questions it.
    some billions to irrigate Australia – nope.

    18 Dec: ABC Curious Darwin: Why can’t the Top End pipe some of its abundant water south to assist drought-stricken states?
    By Matt Garrick
    According to scientists, water experts, and those who have been involved with some of the Top End’s biggest-ever water infrastructure projects, the idea could work — in theory.
    But no government would ever have the cash surplus needed to fund it, with experts warning any such a plan would cost billions and billions — even trillions — of taxpayer dollars.
    And besides, is the notion that the NT has an endless supply of rainwater just a myth, anyway?…

    Project would sink billions
    Although nearly 2 metres of rain falls each year in Darwin, the city does not have the infrastructure in place to capture enough of it and pump it out, the Power and Water Corporation’ Jethro Laidlaw said.
    “We would need massive dams,” he said…
    “We would need to build a massive dam — which is expensive — and we would have to build the pipes that would take the water there, which are extremely expensive … it would cost billions of dollars.”

    Despite the walls of water hitting Top End soil each year, “it’s incredibly expensive to pump it to southern parts of Australia”, CSIRO research scientist Andrew Ash said.
    “Just the energy requirements on an operational scale means that it’s very expensive, let alone the capital costs of building channels or pipelines to southern Australia,” he said…

    The Lake Argyle argument.
    This feat of human ingenuity is called Lake Argyle and was built over a few years from 1969, with the idea it would be used to help fuel the Kimberley’s growing demand for agricultural irrigation, which it has achieved to varying degrees of success.
    But could this water ever be harnessed to help douse the higher populated electorates around 3,000 kilometres away in Perth?
    Probably not.

    Charlie Sharp is the owner of Lake Argyle Cruises and Tours, and his father worked on the project…
    “It would be a great infrastructure project, but … I just don’t think Australians are probably willing to pay the price.”
    CSIRO research scientist Cuan Petheram said studies of the Lake Argyle proposal had proved that the idea would be too cost-prohibitive
    “On a technical level it all comes down to cost,” Mr Petheram said…

    CSIRO’s Mr Petheram said there would be a huge social backlash involved with ever trying to suck the Top End’s water down south.
    “On a social level, I’ve been working in northern Australia for quite a while, and have had various interactions with various communities across the north,” he said.
    “And there is a pretty strong feeling that if people down south want our water, they can come up to northern Australia.
    “The water’s up here, and it has to be used up here if it’s going to be used at all.”…


    • #

      I have not been aware of this being mentioned since PM Abbott was replaced in September 2015 but the Coalition did have plans to develop the north of Australia to create agricultural irrigation farmland taking advantage of high rainfall during the wet season. The CSIRO has identified an area roughly the size of western Europe extending from Western Australia (Ord River Irrigation Area) through the Northern Territory and into Queensland.

      To that end the Abbott Government and the Queensland LNP Newman Government overturned the “Wild River” legislation Labor introduced as a world heritage exercise, meaning a green barrier against development as are all the other National Parks in Australia. Dams would be constructed on those rivers like the Old River Dam (Lake Argyle) at Kununurra WA. I understand that hydro electricity would be considered to supply a larger population and new towns for people working in the new agricultural zone.

      With increasing demand for food from the Asia Pacific Region this project would provide enormous export potential and revenue, and jobs for Australians.


      • #

        It is a pity that the Abbott Government was unable to overturn the conversion of State Forests in Tasmania to National Parks.

        Again, a UN decision not to allow this sovereign nation to use our timber.

        State Forests were set aside a very long time ago for sustainable logging to supply timber for many commercial purposes but today the industry has been downsized due to the Labor Green government decision.


  • #
    • #

      The annual brain washing commences.

      The weather people’s description of normal summer temperatures is so often ridiculous.


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    an adoring Stephen Sackur with another of the CAGW skeleton-like icons. watch if you can bear it, even if only for a few minutes:

    18 Dec: Youtube: 22min41sec: BBC Hardtalk: Sir Martin Rees
    How do we decide what’s important? How do we balance the personal priorities of the here and now, with the big picture challenges that will determine the future of human civilisation. Sir Martin Rees is used to considering the biggest of canvases as one of the world’s leading astrophysicists but recently he’s been gazing into the future of our own planet. The next century he says will determine humanity’s long term destiny – so, are the prospects good or grim?


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    18 Dec: IEA: Coal 2018: Analysis and forecasts to 2023
    Key Findings
    After two years of decline, global coal demand grew by 1% in 2017 to 7585 Mt as stronger global economic growth increased both industrial output and electricity use. Driven by strong coal power generation in China and India, coal demand is expected to grow again in 2018…
    In particular, global coal power generation increased by over 250 TWh, or around 3%, and accounted for about 40% of the additional power generation worldwide. Coal kept its share in the power mix at 38% after some years of decline.
    Global coal demand is forecast to be stable through 2023…

    Coal’s engines of growth
    Meanwhile, the unmatched period of coal power generation growth in India is set to continue, having grown continuously since 1974. With the Indian economy expected to grow over 8% per year to 2023 and the electrification process continuing, power demand is forecast to rise by more than 5% per year over the period…

    South and Southeast Asia are the second engine of growth.
    Indonesia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Philippines and Vietnam have more than 800 million people combined, yet their average annual per capita electricity consumption is just one seventh of that in Europe. Increasing coal power generation, supported by new coal plants under construction, will be the main driver of coal demand growth in those countries…READ ON


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    French coal plant strike at Cordemais extended to December 21
    S&P Global – 2h ago

    17 Dec: S&P Global: French coal plant workers extend action against 2022 closure plan
    by Andreas Franke
    London — France’s five coal-fired power plants remained offline Monday as workers protested against state plans to close them by 2022.
    A strike at the 1.2 GW Cordemais plant in west France was extended to Wednesday morning, operator EDF said Monday in a note on its transparency website.

    Both units at the plant had been offline since Tuesday, with the CGT union calling for a moratorium on closure plans while biomass conversion is assessed…
    EDF’s third coal unit at Le Havre will remain unavailable until at least Friday due to an outage.

    Uniper, which operates France’s other two coal plants, has warned of a high strike risk at its Emile Huchet plant in the Lorraine region in Eastern France. Its Provence 5 coal unit is also currently offline amid the thread of strike action.
    “We have yet to be presented with a binding legal framework [on the closure plan],” Uniper board member Eckhardt Ruemmler said November 29.
    Numerous protests had affected coal-fired generation since the summer, Uniper said.
    France’s government wants to close the country’s remaining coal plants before the next presidential elections in 2022.

    Assessing future generation adequacy in November, grid operator RTE warned that full closure would only be possible after Q1 2021 under certain conditions.
    The current spell of mild temperatures is putting little pressure on the French power system with gas-fired power plants helping to offset coal output at zero, RTE data for the past week show.


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    Another Ian

    “Report on Greenpeace and more”


    “Our friend, The Heartland Institute has agreed to host our new report and please refers to this master link for the full report:



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    Another Ian

    “Bill McKibben: “divestment is hitting the fossil fuel industry where it hurts”… NOT!”



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    Another Ian

    Unintended consequences again

    “Shot and chaser in Whistler”


    Whistler ski resort in British Columbia Canada tried to extort money from the oil industry because of climate change effects to their resort.

    Whistler wants to bill Alberta oil and gas company for climate change expenses


    The oil company fired back and cancelled meeting reservations. Then the mayor of Whistler did an about face and is trying to suck up to the oil company. “