Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Australia's floods: Debate on the role of Global Warming - Senator Bob Brown

From the excellent Aussie Greens:
 
'Following our devastating floods in Australia, Bob Brown called for our nation to implement the mining profits tax that is being discussed here, and for some of this tax to be put towards a fund to help Australia cope with the likely increased natural disasters from global warming. Two of Bob's media statements follow.

 

Bob's call follows the observations by climate scientists that global warming is lifting more water vapour into the air, so increasing the intensity of torrential downpours, especially in Australia's north. Professor David Karoly from the University of Melbourne's School of Earth Sciences said that "Australia has been known for more than a hundred years as a land of droughts and flooding rains, but what climate change means is Australia becomes a land of more droughts and worse flooding rains." http://www.theage.com.au/environment/fates-conspire-to-concoct-a-recipe-for-disaster-20110111-19mp7.html

 

Sadly, the Queensland Government also wants to avoid looking at long term causal issues of the floods. Queensland Premier Anna Bligh has started the process of finding answers in the aftermath of the floods by calling a commission of inquiry, but the terms of reference for the Inquiry have given little, if any, explicit consideration of the role of climate change. This is a strange omission, given that only three months ago the state published an assessment of the potential impacts of climate change. The report said "Climate change is also likely to affect extreme rainfall in south-east Queensland (and) the projected increase in rainfall intensity could result in more flooding events."

 

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Coal barons should help pay for catastrophes - Brown

Media Release

Sunday 16th January 2011

 

The full tax on excess profits by the coal mining industry, as recommended by Treasury, should be imposed with half set aside for future natural catastrophes in Australia, Greens Leader Bob Brown said in Hobart today.

 

"It is unfair that the cost is put on all taxpayers, not the culprits," Senator Brown said.

 

"Burning coal is a major cause of global warming. This industry, which is 75% owned outside Australia, should help pay the cost of the predicted more severe and more frequent floods, droughts and bushfires in coming decades. As well, 700,000 seaside properties in Australia face rising sea levels."

 

"A Goldman Sachs study found that the reduction in the mining super tax agreed by the current Labor government (the coalition opposes the mining tax) would cost Australians $35 billion in forgone revenue to 2019-20."

 

"Scientists agree that current floods come from record-high temperatures of Australian oceans this season."

 

"We also ask insurers to show some compassion to Queensland's flood victims, and to others who face loss as wild weather besets the country. Many people believe they have flood cover and, if not, the fine print should have been disclosed to them."

 

------------------------------------------

17 January 2011

 

The Role of Global Warming

 

After the hottest and wettest year in recorded history, the seas off

northern Australia are also currently warmer than ever before.  This

heat has led to increased evaporation and so, rainfall.

 

Sceptics and defenders of the coal industry may dispute this scientific

data, but they don't.  Instead, they are arguing that there should be no

debate - not, at least, until some undefined time in the future when the

cataclysm has passed and its injuries are behind us. 

 

A week after the "inland tsunami" struck the Toowoomba region, with the

flood crest having passed in Brisbane, and Rockhampton beginning to

recover, Australia's newspapers are now carrying letters expressing

frustration at the absence of debate on the causes of the floods across

the nation and, indeed, in Brazil, Sri Lanka and Pakistan.

 

Like the drought, heatwaves and bushfires these floods are predictable

calamities and worse is in store as the planet is heated by human

actions.

 

We may collectively choose to do nothing about the rapidly increasing of

burning of coal, here and overseas, from coal being mined in Australia

by wealthy corporations largely owned overseas.  However, that choice

should not be made without informed debate.  If there is a later time

better for this crucial debate to begin, let the critics name it.

 

Bob Brown

Australian Greens Leader

http://bob-brown.greensmps.org.au/

 

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29.
From the excellent Aussie Greens:
 
'Following our devastating floods in Australia, Bob Brown called for our nation to implement the mining profits tax that is being discussed here, and for some of this tax to be put towards a fund to help Australia cope with the likely increased natural disasters from global warming. Two of Bob's media statements follow.

 

Bob's call follows the observations by climate scientists that global warming is lifting more water vapour into the air, so increasing the intensity of torrential downpours, especially in Australia's north. Professor David Karoly from the University of Melbourne's School of Earth Sciences said that "Australia has been known for more than a hundred years as a land of droughts and flooding rains, but what climate change means is Australia becomes a land of more droughts and worse flooding rains." http://www.theage.com.au/environment/fates-conspire-to-concoct-a-recipe-for-disaster-20110111-19mp7.html

 

Sadly, the Queensland Government also wants to avoid looking at long term causal issues of the floods. Queensland Premier Anna Bligh has started the process of finding answers in the aftermath of the floods by calling a commission of inquiry, but the terms of reference for the Inquiry have given little, if any, explicit consideration of the role of climate change. This is a strange omission, given that only three months ago the state published an assessment of the potential impacts of climate change. The report said "Climate change is also likely to affect extreme rainfall in south-east Queensland (and) the projected increase in rainfall intensity could result in more flooding events."

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Coal barons should help pay for catastrophes - Brown

Media Release

Sunday 16th January 2011

 

The full tax on excess profits by the coal mining industry, as recommended by Treasury, should be imposed with half set aside for future natural catastrophes in Australia, Greens Leader Bob Brown said in Hobart today.

 

"It is unfair that the cost is put on all taxpayers, not the culprits," Senator Brown said.

 

"Burning coal is a major cause of global warming. This industry, which is 75% owned outside Australia, should help pay the cost of the predicted more severe and more frequent floods, droughts and bushfires in coming decades. As well, 700,000 seaside properties in Australia face rising sea levels."

 

"A Goldman Sachs study found that the reduction in the mining super tax agreed by the current Labor government (the coalition opposes the mining tax) would cost Australians $35 billion in forgone revenue to 2019-20."

 

"Scientists agree that current floods come from record-high temperatures of Australian oceans this season."

 

"We also ask insurers to show some compassion to Queensland's flood victims, and to others who face loss as wild weather besets the country. Many people believe they have flood cover and, if not, the fine print should have been disclosed to them."

 

------------------------------------------

17 January 2011

 

The Role of Global Warming

 

After the hottest and wettest year in recorded history, the seas off

northern Australia are also currently warmer than ever before.  This

heat has led to increased evaporation and so, rainfall.

 

Sceptics and defenders of the coal industry may dispute this scientific

data, but they don't.  Instead, they are arguing that there should be no

debate - not, at least, until some undefined time in the future when the

cataclysm has passed and its injuries are behind us. 

 

A week after the "inland tsunami" struck the Toowoomba region, with the

flood crest having passed in Brisbane, and Rockhampton beginning to

recover, Australia's newspapers are now carrying letters expressing

frustration at the absence of debate on the causes of the floods across

the nation and, indeed, in Brazil, Sri Lanka and Pakistan.

 

Like the drought, heatwaves and bushfires these floods are predictable

calamities and worse is in store as the planet is heated by human

actions.

 

We may collectively choose to do nothing about the rapidly increasing of

burning of coal, here and overseas, from coal being mined in Australia

by wealthy corporations largely owned overseas.  However, that choice

should not be made without informed debate.  If there is a later time

better for this crucial debate to begin, let the critics name it.

 

Bob Brown

Australian Greens Leader

http://bob-brown.greensmps.org.au/

 

30. 31. 32.