Both Labor and Coalition are failing Australia on climate

Photo by Mike Bowers: Anthony Albanese and Peter Dutton have a kind on consensus on climate

Contributed from Victoria

Climate has slipped off Australia’s political stage of late. One big reason is that neither the government and opposition are doing much to make improvements and they don’t want any of us to know about it.

They are busy on making matters worse. Labor’s slightly more ambitious policy that it came to the last election with has produced little. Australia remains way off previously committee targets.

The opposition wants to scrap the Paris commitments entirely and is working overtime to promote it nuclear power and radioactive waste disposal industry proposal. So far, Dutton with the aid on the National’s leadership has been able to silence internal division, and a more detailed policy may be out within days.

No doubt the industrial scale promotion by Murdoch media is a major factor. Its own target is the delegitimization of renewable energy alternatives, pretending they are too costly and inefficient. The truth is, according to the CSIRO’s Gencost report, a combination of solar and wind will cost between $73 and $128 a MW/h compared to $141 to $233 a MW/h for nuclear power. The Murdoch method is to throw as much mud as possible to bury the evidence in a mountain of garbage.

Dutton has said that the plan is to ditch the government’s already inadequate goal of 43 percent reduction in carbon emissions.

The Albanese government has so far failed to counter this, and its own promised targets are not being met. No wonder few are convinced that this is good enough. The is a perception of a bipartisanship to limit genuine renewable energy and maintain dependence on fossil fuels.

Albanese’s 43 percent target is a con because it includes the carbon capture made by trees as part of the total. This means the real target for action to reduce carbon is much less.

Underlining this is the Albanese government’s decision to give another $54 billion to the dirty gas industry.

The future of Australia’s climate policy looks bleak on the face of the failure of government and opposition.

Despite the obstacles, communities continue to fight for change. Frist Nations communities play an important role in this. In far north Queensland, Western Australia and the Northern Territory, campaigning against damaging gas extraction and fracking. This extends to NSW, where the biggest floods in recorded history prompt communities to act more than ever before. They fight for the recovery of their homes and action to stop this happening again.

Climate crisis is not only a problem for the future. The impact is already being felt. There is no denying this and many of those who were once sceptical are beginning to see the truth of it. All but a few want a change. Climate will rise to the top of political discourse again. Politicians will not be able to escape this.

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