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Australian PM Defiant On Climate, Will Stay The Coal-Fired Course

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hatrack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 12:09 PM
Original message
Australian PM Defiant On Climate, Will Stay The Coal-Fired Course
Edited on Mon Oct-30-06 12:27 PM by hatrack
JOHN Howard has dug in over coal-fired power, nuclear energy and his refusal to sign the Kyoto Protocol in the face of an international report predicting a catastrophic economic cost of $9 trillion if nothing is done to stop global warming. Labor and conservation groups immediately labelled the Coalition a rogue state on greenhouse gases for refusing to ratify the Kyoto agreement on cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

The Prime Minister told parliament he would not sign an international agreement that did not put the same limits on the fast-growing economies of China and India, and said coal would continue to provide most of the world's energy to 2050. "What you really need in this debate is to have a multiplicity of responses," Mr Howard told parliament yesterday. "The only things that will ever replace the current dirty power stations are cleaner uses of fossil fuel, or nuclear power," he said. "You will never replace them with solar or wind."

A major report from Britain has called for urgent world action to cut greenhouse gases or face economic failure worse than the Great Depression. In a pointed reference to Australia, the report by former British Treasury head and World Bank chief economist Nicholas Stern warns that if global temperatures rise by an average of four degrees, large swaths of Australia's farming land would be rendered unproductive.

While grim in its outlook if nothing is done, the report is optimistic that a concerted effort to develop clean coal technologies will be able to stabilise world greenhouse gas emissions. Described by British Prime Minister Tony Blair as the most important report he has ever received, the document says the economic impact of global warming must begin to be addressed immediately to avoid world economic catastrophe. Sir Nicholas estimates acting now to cut carbon emissions would cost 1 per cent of global GDP a year, about $500 million. By doing nothing, the costs at the time would be a minimum of 5 per cent and as high as 20 per cent of GDP a year. Australian estimates of such an impact on the energy-based economy are between $15 billion and $66 billion a year, driving down Australian wages by 20 per cent.

EDIT

http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,20867,2067...
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phantom power Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 12:26 PM
Response to Original message
1. so does he plan to replace coal with nuclear?
It sounds like he doesn't really give a shit about greenhouse gasses. He's just as happy to keep using coal.
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hatrack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 12:27 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. No, not even that, as the "amazing coincidences" post shows
I fixed my headline accordingly.
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