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Trying to duck the climate fight has made the next election harder for the Coalition

By Graham Young - posted Tuesday, 2 November 2021

Last week I received an email from federal Liberal director Andrew Hirst soliciting a donation because renewable energy lobbyist and activist Simon Holmes a Court has assembled a fighting fund of $1.4 million to run pro-renewable independents in Liberal held seats.

I don't remember the last time I donated to the Liberal Party, and the next time is not likely to be any time soon either. I replied:

Thanks, but as you appear to have decided to throw the country under the bus by adopting the net zero by 2050 mantra, there is not much point giving you any money.

You might have used the levers of government to fight back against vested interests like Holmes a Court. Instead, you've capitulated. That doesn't strengthen your case for funds, it weakens it.


Scott Morrison's "Long-Term Emissions Reduction Plan" makes the case for the Liberal, and now the National, parties even worse.

While the Liberal Party prides itself on being pragmatic, which often means being less than ideologically pure, pragmatism also means weighing the costs and benefits of things. There's little measurement of either in this document.

The climate neurotics would say that is reasonable, because we are in a "climate emergency", but in fact there is no evidence of one at all.

Yes, the temperature is increasing, but at a very manageable 0.14° C per decade. I live in Brisbane and temperature-wise that is the equivalent of moving from the breezy eastern suburbs to the more arid western suburbs, and taking 100 years about it.

We're told the Barrier Reef is the canary in the mine, but last year saw record (as far as records go) coral cover.

Sea rise is allegedly going to make parts of major cities uninhabitable, but look at the Fort Dennison tide gauge in Sydney Harbour where sea levels are rising at about 6.5 cms per century, a figure echoed up and down the east coast of Australia.


Then there is rainfall. Instead of the forecast perpetual drought rainfall has increased, not decreased, in Australia. Worried about extreme weather events? Cyclones have decreased in frequency and become milder since the 70s over the period when most of the emissions have occurred.

And so on.

We have the leisure to decide what to do and how to sequence and prioritise it. We have time to subject the risks from CO2 emissions and policies to deal with them to a proper cost benefit analysis, using the latest scientific observations and understanding of the causes of climate change, as well as technological and engineering insights.

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This article was first published in The Spectator.

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About the Author

Graham Young is chief editor and the publisher of On Line Opinion. He is executive director of the Australian Institute for Progress, an Australian think tank based in Brisbane, and the publisher of On Line Opinion.

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