In Australia in dealing with the pandemic, the commonwealth and all states have repeatedly stated that what they are doing is 'to rely on the science and the advice of the health experts'. As a result Australia is one of the few countries in the world that has almost got the pandemic under control. With the advent of a vaccine we may be able to put the episode behind us altogether.
Surely it is not a big stretch to apply these principles (i e listening to the scientists) in dealing with Climate Change. The overwhelming number of scientists tell us that without drastic action the planet is headed for a significant increase in average temperatures which will result in more numerous 'Severe Climate Events' such as bushfires, hurricanes, etc. (Ref: The International Panel on Climate Change -IPCC, also 'A Life on our Planet' by David Attenborough and thousands of others.) This will make many places in the world unliveable. (ref: Climate Analytics. a non-profit climate science and policy institute based in Berlin, with an office in Perth.)
These 'severe climate events' are already happening: The Bushfires in early 2020 in Australia were exacerbated by the warming climate, 2020 was the worst Hurricane season in living memory off the coast of North America, there are Bushfires in Siberia and gradually rising sea levels. The Ice caps are melting (North and South Poles and the Greenland Ice sheet). Sea temperatures are rising.
Australia is a major producer and exporter of fossil fuels- coal, gas and LNG. 70% of Australia's electricity is generated using coal. This raises our footprint considerably if one adds the effect of Australia's fossil fuel exports to domestic Greenhouse Gas emissions.
- Australia's domestic emissions are1.4% of Global emissions.
- Add Australia's fossil fuel exports are 3.6% of Global emissions.
- Giving a total of 5% of Global emissions, a hugely significant figure.
Don't be fooled by the mild summer we have had on the East Coast in the 2020/21 summer. The La Nina event occurs every few years which has given us some decent rain. The pattern will revert to normal shortly and the trend over the past couple of decades is that Australia is experiencing a drier climate with less and less rain.
Do we still think that Australia should just do nothing or as it appears at the moment make inconsequential or token efforts to reduce carbon emissions?
NO! I think we should be responsible and take our place in the world to tackle what is a major threat to our very existence.
So where are we in terms of tackling Greenhouse Gas Emissions which are the main driver of increasing temperatures and therefore Climate Change:
Australia is projected to increase its Greenhouse Gas Emissions by 8.6% above 2005 levels by 2030. This is far away from the emission reductions promised by the Australian Government by 2030 (16-18 % below 2005 levels). (Ref: Climate Analytics).
Australia is far from doing enough to reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions.
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