Barack Obama Highlights Climate Change In Speech At University Of Queensland

Ahead of the G20 meeting, President Barack Obama has placed climate change at the centre of a speech to students at the University of Queensland.

Obama

Obama told the gathering that no region had more at stake than the Asia-Pacific. He said climate change was causing more wildfires, flooding, extreme storms and rising seas. “The incredible natural glory of the Great Barrier Reef is threatened,” he said.

Obama pledges $3 billion to the Green Climate Fund to assist developing countries. “Let them leap frog some of the dirty industries that powered our development, go straight to a clean-energy economy that allows them to grow, create jobs and at the same time reduce their carbon pollution,” he said. [Read more…]


Prince Charles: We Must Act Now On Climate Change

Prince Charles has called for immediate action on climate change.

The Prince of Wales made the call in a message to the Climate Change Summit meeting in New York.

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With Al Gore On Hand, Clive Palmer Says PUP Will Vote To Abolish Carbon Tax But Supports An ETS

With former US Vice-President Al Gore standing next to him, Clive Palmer has announced that the Palmer United Party senators will vote with the government in the Senate to abolish the carbon tax.

Palmer

Palmer says PUP will move an amendment to require companies to pass on to consumers savings from the abolition of the carbon tax.

Palmer also announced that PUP favours an emissions trading scheme with a price set at zero, “which will only become effective once Australia’s main trading partners also take action to establish such a scheme”.

Palmer said PUP will oppose abolition of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, the Climate Change Authority and the Renewable Energy Target. [Read more…]


Carbon Tax Repeal Bills Passed By House Of Representatives

The bills to repeal the previous Labor government’s carbon tax have been passed by the House of Representatives.

Third Reading

The third reading of the eleven bills took place at 4.08pm today. The final vote was passed on the voices. In a near-deserted chamber, the Environment Minister, Greg Hunt, was congratulated by his colleagues. [Read more…]


John Howard Climate Change Speech: One Religion Is Enough

Former Prime Minister John Howard has delivered a speech on climate change in which he calls for a “sense of proportion” in the global warming debate and says that “first principles tell us never to accept that all of the science is in on any proposition”.

HowardHoward said: “In the past five years, the dynamic of the global warming debate has shifted away from exaggerated acceptance of the worst possible implications of what a majority of climate scientists tell us, towards a more balanced and questioning approach.” He warned against use of “offensive language” such as the term “denier”.

Howard said it is “highly unlikely” there will ever be a worldwide agreement on global warming. He said he had “always been something of an agnostic on global warming” and suggested his support for an emissions trading scheme in 2007 was purely political and occurred at a time when it was expedient to be seen to be “doing something”.

Nuclear energy must be part of any long term response to global warming, Howard said.

Transcript of John Howard’s speech to the Global Warming Policy Foundation in London.

One religion is Enough

I thank Nigel Lawson and his colleagues for their invitation to be here tonight. When he asked me to deliver this lecture Lord Lawson said that I could talk about what I chose. I think that was not meant quite as literally as it might seem. I am sure he had in mind that I might share with you my views on the contemporary state of the debate on global warming, especially from an Australian perspective. That has special relevance; Australia has a new PM, and integral to his successful campaign was sustained opposition to a carbon tax. [Read more…]


Shorten Says ALP Will Support Carbon Tax Abolition Provided ETS Remains

The Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten, has announced that the ALP will support legislation to abolish the fixed carbon price but will move amendments to retain the emissions trading scheme.

Shorten said the ALP will oppose the legislation outright if its amendments are rejected.

Shorten-Butler

Shorten spoke at a press conference with the ALP’s shadow minister for Environment, Climate Change and Water, Mark Butler.

The legislation to abolish the carbon tax will be the first item of business when the new House meets for on November 12. Following its passage through the House, attention will focus on the Senate where the ALP and the Greens have a majority until June 30. The legislation is most likely to be passed by the new Senate after July 1.

Despite speculation that the ALP might agree to support the legislation, Shorten’s announcement comes as no real surprise. The former Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, committed the ALP to abandoning the fixed price on July 1 in favour of bringing forward the commencement date of the ETS. Any decision to support abolition of the ETS risked splitting the ALP. The coalition is committed to abolish the fixed price and the ETS. [Read more…]


Abbott And Hunt Release Carbon Tax Repeal Legislation

The Abbott government has released an exposure draft of its carbon tax repeal legislation.

The legislation will be open for consultation until November 4, ahead of the return of Parliament on November 12.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Environment Minister Greg Hunt made the announcement at a press conference in Canberra today. They reaffirmed their commitment to introducing the repeal legislation as the first item of business in the new Parliament.

Abbott-Hunt

Describing new Labor leader Bill Shorten as a “pragmatist”, Abbott said the legislation gave the ALP a last chance to “repent” for its breach of faith with the Australian community when it introduced the carbon tax. “If you are in favour of a good deal for Australian families, and a fair deal for Australian workers and jobs, this is legislation you must support.” [Read more…]


Senator Christine Milne’s Address To The National Press Club

The leader of the Australian Greens, Senator Christine Milne, has addressed the National Press Club and announced that the party’s agreement with the Gillard minority government is at end end.

Milne

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Text of Senator Christine Milne’s Address to the National Press Club.

Australian Democracy at the Crossroads: The mining industry and the quarry past versus the people and the innovative future.

Parliamentary colleagues, distinguished guests and friends.

Australian democracy is at the crossroads. Our future as a nation, our sense of who we are and what we want for our society and local community is now being determined by mining billionaires in boardrooms for themselves and their overseas shareholders, and what they want, is being delivered through our state and federal parliaments.

The mining industry has become so powerful that the lines between business and politics have become blurred to the detriment of people and the well being of our society. [Read more…]


Combet: Tony Abbott Is Australia’s Biggest Bullshit Artist

Tony Abbott is “a complete bullshit artist,” according to the Minister for Climate Change, Greg Combet.

Combet

Speaking to the media just hours after President Obama expressed support for a “market-based solution to climate change,” the Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency castigated Abbott over his attitude to climate change.

“He’s wrong on every front,” Combet said. “In fact, on the issue of the carbon tax, he’s Australia’s biggest bullshit artist.”

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President Barack Obama’s Second Inaugural Address

Barack Obama has been ceremonially sworn in for his second term as the 44th President of the United States.

Obama and Vice-President Joe Biden were officially sworn in yesterday, in accordance with the requirements of the Constitution. In today’s public ceremony, Supreme Court Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor again swore in Biden and Chief Justice John Roberts again swore in Obama.

Political attention today focussed on Obama’s Second Inaugural Speech.

With frequent invocations of ‘We, The People’, the speech was Obama’s most progressive as president. Amongst other things, he called for action on climate change and equality for gay people.

Capitol

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Text of President Barack Obama’s second inaugural address.

Vice President Biden, Mr. Chief Justice, Members of the United States Congress, distinguished guests, and fellow citizens:

Each time we gather to inaugurate a president, we bear witness to the enduring strength of our Constitution. We affirm the promise of our democracy. We recall that what binds this nation together is not the colors of our skin or the tenets of our faith or the origins of our names. What makes us exceptional — what makes us American — is our allegiance to an idea, articulated in a declaration made more than two centuries ago:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Today we continue a never-ending journey, to bridge the meaning of those words with the realities of our time. For history tells us that while these truths may be self-evident, they have never been self-executing; that while freedom is a gift from God, it must be secured by His people here on Earth. The patriots of 1776 did not fight to replace the tyranny of a king with the privileges of a few or the rule of a mob. They gave to us a Republic, a government of, and by, and for the people, entrusting each generation to keep safe our founding creed.

For more than two hundred years, we have. [Read more…]