Tuesday, October 25, 2016
CO2 levels mark 'new era' in the world's changing climate
Only because Greenies say so. CO2 levels have been rising fairly streadily for a long time. They will presumably continue to do so. The 400ppm level was just another step on the way. The only interesting question is whether they had any effect on global temperature. There was an abrupt temperature rise in late 2015/early 2016 but there was no abrupt CO2 rise at that time. Rather amusingly, 2015 was one year in which CO2 levels did NOT rise. So the culprit for that rise was clearly the long awaited El Nino effect, a natural weather fluctuation
Levels of CO2 in the atmosphere have surged past an important threshold and may not dip below it for "many generations".
The 400 parts per million benchmark was broken globally for the first time in recorded history in 2015.
But according to the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO), 2016 will likely be the first full year to exceed the mark.
The high levels can be partly attributed to a strong El Niño event.
While human emissions of CO2 remained fairly static between 2014 and 2015, the onset of a strong El Niño weather phenomenon caused a spike in levels of the gas in the atmosphere.
That's because the drought conditions in tropical regions produced by El Niño meant that vegetation was less able to absorb CO2. There were also extra emissions from fires, sparked by the drier conditions.
In their annual Greenhouse Gas Bulletin, the World Meteorological Organisation says the conditions helped push the growth in the levels of CO2 in the atmosphere above the average for the last ten years.
At the atmospheric monitoring station in Mauna Loa, Hawaii, levels of CO2 broke through 400 parts per million (ppm), meaning 400 molecules of CO2 for every one million molecules in the atmosphere.
The last time CO2 was regularly above 400ppm was three to five million years ago, say experts.
Prior to 1800 atmospheric levels were around 280ppm, according to the US National Oceanic And Atmospheric Administration (Noaa).
The WMO says that the rise through the 400ppm barrier has persisted and it's likely that 2016 will be the first full year when the measurements show CO2 above that benchmark, and "hence for many generations".
While the El Niño factor has now disappeared, the human impact on climate change has not, the WMO argue.
"The year 2015 ushered in a new era of optimism and climate action with the Paris climate change agreement," said WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas.
"But it will also make history as marking a new era of climate change reality with record high greenhouse gas concentrations."
The report also details the growth in other greenhouse gases, including methane and nitrous oxide.
In 2015, levels of methane were 2.5 times greater than in the pre-industrial era, while nitrous oxide was 1.2 times above the historic measure.
Global Warming Versus Global Greening
Matt Ridley finds that the slightest deviation from Green dogma is an unforgiveable sin
I am a passionate champion of science. I have devoted most of my career to celebrating and chronicling scientific discovery. I think the scientific method is humankind’s greatest achievement, and that there is no higher calling.
So what I am about to say this evening about the state of climate science is not in any sense anti-science. It is anti the distortion and betrayal of science.
I am still in love with science as a philosophy; I greatly admire and like the vast majority of scientists I meet; but I am increasingly disaffected from science as an institution.
The way it handles climate change is a big part of the reason.
After covering global warming debates as a journalist on and off for almost 30 years, with initial credulity, then growing skepticism, I have come to the conclusion that the risk of dangerous global warming, now and in the future, has been greatly exaggerated while the policies enacted to mitigate the risk have done more harm than good, both economically and environmentally, and will continue to do so.
And I am treated as some kind of pariah for coming to this conclusion.
Why do I think the risk from global warming is being exaggerated? For four principal reasons.
1. All environmental predictions of doom always are;
2. the models have been consistently wrong for more than 30 years;
3. the best evidence indicates that climate sensitivity is relatively low;
4. the climate science establishment has a vested interest in alarm.
I will come to those four points in a moment. But first I want to talk about global greening, the gradual, but large, increase in green vegetation on the planet.
I think this is one of the most momentous discoveries of recent years and one that transforms the scientific background to climate policy, though you would never know it from the way it has been reported. And it is a story in which I have been both vilified and vindicated.
In December 2012, the environmental scientist Jesse Ausubel of Rockefeller University drew my attention to a video online of a lecture given by Ranga Myneni of Boston University.
In this lecture Myneni presented ingenious analysis of data from satellites proving that much of the vegetated area of the planet was getting greener, only a little bit was getting browner, and that overall in 30 years there had been a roughly 14% increase in green vegetation on planet Earth.
He argued that this was occurring in all vegetation types – tropical rain forests, subarctic taiga, grasslands, semi-deserts, farmland, everywhere.
What is more, Myneni argued that by various means he could calculate that about half of this greening was a direct result of rising carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere, rather than the application of agricultural fertiliser, irrigation, warmer temperatures or increased rainfall.
Carbon dioxide, along with water, is the raw material that plants use to make carbohydrates, with the help of sunlight, so it stands to reason that raising its concentration should help plants grow.
I was startled by Myneni’s data. I knew that there had been thousands of so-called free-air concentration (FACE) experiments, in which levels of CO2 had been increased over crops or wild ecosystems to find out if it boosted their growth (it did), and that commercial greenhouse owners now routinely maintain CO2 levels in their greenhouses at more than double ambient levels – because it makes their tomatoes grow faster.
But the global effect of CO2 levels on the quantity of vegetation had not, as far as I could tell, been measured till now.
Other lines of evidence also pointed to this global greening:
the increased rate of growth of forest trees,
the increased amplitude of seasonal carbon dioxide variation measured in Hawaii and elsewhere,
photographic surveys of vegetation,
the increased growth rate of phytoplankton, marine plants and some corals, and so on.
I published an article in the Wall Street Journal in January 2013 on these various lines of evidence, including Myneni’s satellite analysis, pointing to the increase in green vegetation.
This was probably the very first article in the mainstream media on the satellite evidence for global greening.
For this I was subjected online to withering scorn by the usual climate spin doctors, but even they had to admit I was “factually accurate”.
Six months later Randall Donohue and colleagues in Australia published a paper using satellite data to conclude that the arid parts of the planet, such as western Australia and the Sahel region, had seen a net greening of 11% over 30 years – similar results to Myneni’s.
Myneni’s results were eventually published three years later in April 2016 in a paper in Nature Climate Change, with 32 authors from 24 institutions in eight countries – when the IPCC report was safely in the public domain and the great Paris climate jamboree was over.
His results were now even stronger than he had concluded in his 2012 lecture. Now he said that 70% of the cause of greening was carbon dioxide – up from half.
As Myneni’s co-author Zaichun Zhu, of Beijing University, puts it, it’s equivalent to adding a green continent twice the size of mainland USA.
Frankly, I think this is big news. A new continent’s worth of green vegetation in a single human generation.
At the end of 2015, when his paper had been under peer review for eight months so he knew these results were coming, Dr Myneni, criticized me specifically, saying on a green blog that “[Ridley] falsely claims that CO2 fertilisation is responsible for the greening of the earth”. Yet a few months later he himself published evidence that “CO2 fertilisation explains 70% of the greening trend”.
In the press release accompanying the article in April 2016 he once again referred to me by name:
[“The beneficial aspect of CO2 fertilization in promoting plant growth has been used by contrarians, notably Lord Ridley…to argue against cuts in carbon emissions to mitigate climate change…"]
As Richard Tol commented: “The new paper vindicates what Matt Ridley and others have been saying all along — yet they apparently deserve to be kicked nonetheless.”
I wrote to Dr Myneni politely asking him to justify his criticism of me with specific examples. He was unable to do so. “There are no ‘up-sides’ to having too much CO2 in the air,” was all he said.
In the very same issue of the same journal was another paper from an international team about a further benefit of global greening, which concluded that CO2 fertilisation is likely to increase crop water productivity throughout the world, for example by up to 48% for rain-fed wheat in arid areas, and that “If realized in the fields, the effects of elevated [CO2] could considerably mitigate global yield losses whilst reducing agricultural consumptive water use (4–17%).”
Their chart shows that without CO2 fertilisation, crops will become more water-stressed during the current century; with it they will become LESS water-stressed.
These are huge benefits for the earth and for people. The CO2 fertilisation effect is already worth trillions of dollars, according to detailed calculations by Craig Idso.
At this point Steve McIntyre of Climate Audit drew attention to my vindication on twitter. Richard Betts, the Met Office’s twitter frequenter, protested that global greening was well known and had been referred to in the IPCC’s report.
This was misleading at best and false at worst. The Summary for Policy Makers of Working Group 2 refers to global greening not at all. The full report of WG2 does very gently hint at there being some evidence of greening, but in a dismissive way. These are the only mentions I could find:
[“Satellite observations from 1982–2010 show an 11% increase in green foliage cover in warm, arid environments…Higher CO2 concentrations enhance photosynthesis and growth (up to a point) and reduce water use by the plant…these effects are mostly beneficial; however, high CO2 also has negative effects.”
“In summary, there is high confidence that net terrestrial ecosystem productivity at the global scale has increased relative to the preindustrial era. There is low confidence in attribution of these trends to climate change. Most studies speculate that rising CO2 concentrations are contributing to this trend through stimulation of photosynthesis but there is no clear, consistent signal of a climate change contribution.”]
If that’s a clear and prominent statement that carbon dioxide emissions have increased green vegetation on the planet by 14% and are significantly reducing the water requirements of agriculture, then I’m the Queen of Sheba.
Back in 1908 Svante Arrhenius, the father of the greenhouse theory, said the following: “By the influence of the increasing percentage of carbonic acid in the atmosphere, we may hope to enjoy ages with more equable and better climates.” It appears he was not wrong.
Now let me back to global warming. Gro Harlem Brundtland, former Prime Minister of Norway and UN Special representative on Climate Change, said in a speech in 2007 that “it is irresponsible, reckless and deeply immoral to question the seriousness of the situation. The time for diagnosis is over. Now it is time to act”.
I disagree. It is irresponsible not to challenge the evidence properly, especially if the policies pursued in its name are causing suffering.
Increasingly, many people would like to outlaw, suppress, prosecute and censor all discussion of what they call “the science” rather than engage in debate.
“We will not, at any time, debate the science of climate change,” said three professors at the University of Colorado in anemail to their students recently.
Shamefully, much of the scientific establishment and the media are prepared to go along with that program. And to bully any academic or journalist who steps out of line.
This coercion was displayed all too vividly when the distinguished scientist Lennart Bengtsson was bullied into resigning from the academic advisory council of GWPF in 2014 by colleagues’ threats. He even began to “worry about my health and safety…”
And when Philippe Verdier was sacked as weather forecaster in France for writing an honest book. And when Roger Pielke was dropped by the 538 website for telling the truth about storms.
No wonder that I talk frequently to scientists who are skeptical, but dare not say so openly. That is a ridiculous state of affairs.
We’re told that it’s impertinent to question “the science” and that we must think as we are told. But arguments from authority are the refuge of priests.
Thomas Henry Huxley put it this way: “The improver of natural knowledge absolutely refuses to acknowledge authority, as such. For him, scepticism is the highest of duties; blind faith the one unpardonable sin.”
What keeps science honest, what stops it from succumbing entirely to confirmation bias, is that it is decentralized, allowing one lab to challenge another.
That’s how truth is arrived at in science, not by scientists challenging their own theories (that’s a myth), but by scientists disputing each other’s theories.
These days there is a legion of well paid climate spin doctors. Their job is to keep the debate binary: either you believe climate change is real and dangerous or you’re a denier who thinks it’s a hoax.
But there’s a third possibility they refuse to acknowledge: that it’s real but not dangerous. That’s what I mean by lukewarming, and I think it is by far the most likely prognosis.
I am not claiming that carbon dioxide is not a greenhouse gas; it is.
I am not saying that its concentration in the atmosphere is not increasing; it is.
I am not saying the main cause of that increase is not the burning of fossil fuels; it is.
I am not saying the climate does not change; it does.
I am not saying that the atmosphere is not warmer today than it was 50 or 100 years ago; it is.
And I am not saying that carbon dioxide emissions are not likely to have caused some (probably more than half) of the warming since 1950.
I agree with the consensus on all these points.
I am not in any sense a “denier”, that unpleasant, modern term of abuse for blasphemers against the climate dogma, though the Guardian and New Scientist never let the facts get in the way of their prejudices on such matters.
I am a lukewarmer.
There is no consensus that climate change is going to be dangerous. Even the IPCC says there is a range of possible outcomes, from harmless to catastrophic. I’m in that range: I think the top of that range is very unlikely. But the IPCC also thinks the top of its range is very unlikely.
The supposed 97% consensus, based on a hilariously bogus study by John Cook, refers only to the proposition that climate change is real and partly man-made. Nobody has ever shown anything like a consensus among scientists for the proposition that climate change is going to be dangerous.
Professor Daniel Sarewitz put it well recently: “Even the vaunted scientific consensus around climate change…applies only to a narrow claim about the discernible human impact on global warming. The minute you get into questions about the rate and severity of future impacts, or the costs of and best pathways for addressing them, no semblance of consensus among experts remains.”
Besides, consensus is a reasonable guide to data about the past but is no guide to the future and never has been. In non-linear systems with feedbacks, like economies or atmospheres, experts are notoriously bad at forecasting events. There is no such thing as an expert on the future.
More HERE (See the original for links, graphics etc.)
Global Warming Concerns 'Not a Blank Check' for Clean Power Plan
The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals last week released a 320-page transcript of the September 27th oral argument on the Environmental Protection Agency’s carbon dioxide (CO2) emission standards for existing fossil-fuel power plants, the agency’s so-called Clean Power Plan (CPP). From a constitutional perspective, the best moment of the marathon proceeding was Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s reminder to his colleagues that “global warming is not a [regulatory] blank check.”
The fun part of it is that Kavanaugh, a conservative judge appointed by President George W. Bush, invoked liberal Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer’s concurrence in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld, a case invalidating the Bush administration’s use of special commissions to try detainees at Guantanamo Bay.
In Hamdan, Justice Breyer wrote (citations omitted):
The dissenters [Justices Thomas, Scalia, and Alito] say that today’s decision would “sorely hamper the President’s ability to confront and defeat a new and deadly enemy.” They suggest that it undermines our Nation’s ability to “preven[t] future attacks” of the grievous sort that we have already suffered. That claim leads me to state briefly what I believe the majority sets forth both explicitly and implicitly at greater length. The Court’s conclusion ultimately rests upon a single ground: Congress has not issued the Executive a “blank check.” Indeed, Congress has denied the President the legislative authority to create military commissions of the kind at issue here. Nothing prevents the President from returning to Congress to seek the authority he believes necessary.
Where, as here, no emergency prevents consultation with Congress, judicial insistence upon that consultation does not weaken our Nation’s ability to deal with danger. To the contrary, that insistence strengthens the Nation’s ability to determine—through democratic means—how best to do so. The Constitution places its faith in those democratic means. Our Court today simply does the same.
Kananaugh applied Breyer’s reasoning as follows (p. 100):
The larger point is that it’s up to Congress to decide. And it seems . . . and I’ll just throw this out, I’m concerned about making sure our decision, in the grand sweep of separation of powers, is consistent with the past, and consistent with the future. And it seems like what we have here is a thin—people disagree with the adjective—but a thin statute [i.e. Section 111(d) of the Clean Air Act]. It wasn’t designed with this specifically in mind, but it can be kind of moved around to get here, for some really urgent problem.
And thinking in the past, I mean, the prior administration in the national security realm went through the same thing, and thin statutes trying to defeat an enemy, and the Supreme Court said no in the Hamdan case, which I think is highly relevant. Justice Breyer said the dissenters say that today’s decision would sorely hamper the President’s ability to confront and defeat a new and deadly enemy; the Court’s conclusion ultimately rests upon a single ground: Congress has not issued the Executive a blank check; no emergency prevents consultation with Congress; judicial insistence upon that consultation does not weaken our nation’s ability to deal with danger; strengthens the nation’s ability to determine through democratic means how best to do so; the Constitution places its faith in those democratic means.
And it seems like we’ve lived this issue where the most urgent need of our country was identified as a reason to use old statutes that weren’t squarely on point to jam new urgent needs into those. And the Supreme Court, Justice Breyer speaking directly to it, war is not a blank check. Global warming is not a blank check either for the President.
Distilling Kavanaugh’s riff on Breyer down to a soundbite, we get the following: Where, as here, no emergency prevents consultation with Congress, neither war nor climate change justify executive lawmaking.
Another Greenie fraud
Lies come naturally to the Green/Left. It's all they've got
One of the world's leading institutes for researching the impact of global warming has repeatedly claimed credit for work done by rivals – and used it to win millions from the taxpayer.
An investigation by The Mail on Sunday also reveals that when the Centre for Climate Change Economics and Policy (CCCEP) made a bid for more Government funds, it claimed it was responsible for work that was published before the organisation even existed.
Last night, our evidence was described by one leading professor whose work was misrepresented as 'a clear case of fraud – using deception for financial gain'. The chairman of the CCCEP since 2008 has been Nick Stern, a renowned global advocate for drastic action to combat climate change.
He is also the president of the British Academy, an invitation-only society reserved for the academic elite. It disburses grants worth millions to researchers – and to Lord Stern's own organisation.
On Friday, the CCCEP – based jointly at the London School of Economics and the University of Leeds – will host a gala at the Royal Society in London in the peer's honour. Attended by experts and officials from around the world, it is to mark the tenth anniversary of the blockbuster Stern Review, a 700-page report on the economic impact of climate change. The review was commissioned by Tony Blair's Government.
The review argued that the world had to take immediate action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions or face much higher future costs. It has exerted a powerful influence on successive British governments and international bodies.
Part of the CCCEP's official mission, which it often boasts about in its public reports, is to lobby for the policies Lord Stern advocates by presenting the case for them with British and foreign governments and at UN climate talks.
Last night, CCCEP spokesman Bob Ward admitted it had 'made mistakes', both in claiming credit for studies which it had not funded and for papers published by rival academics. 'This is regrettable, but mistakes can happen… We will take steps over the next week to amend these mistakes,' he said.
The Mail on Sunday investigation reveals today that:
The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), which has given the CCCEP £9 million from taxpayers since 2008, has never checked the organisation's supposed publication lists, saying they were 'taken on trust';
Some of the papers the CCCEP listed have nothing to do with climate change – such as the reasons why people buy particular items in supermarkets and why middle class people 'respond more favourably' to the scenery of the Peak District than their working class counterparts;
Papers submitted in an explicit bid to secure further ESRC funding not only had nothing to do with the CCCEP, they were published before it was founded;
The publication dates of some of these papers on the list are incorrect – giving the mistaken impression that they had been completed after the CCCEP came into existence.
Academics whose work was misrepresented reacted with fury. Professor Richard Tol, a climate change economics expert from Sussex University, said: 'It is serious misconduct to claim credit for a paper you haven't supported, and it's fraud to use that in a bid to renew a grant. I've never come across anything like it before. It stinks.'
The paper cited by the CCCEP of which Prof Tol is a co-author was published online by the Ecological Economics journal on July 31, 2008. At the time, he and the lead author, David Anthoff, were on the staff of the Economic and Social Research Institute in Dublin. Their co-author, Cameron Hepburn, was at Oxford University. The research on 'the marginal costs of climate change' was funded by the European Commission and the Stockholm Environment Institute.
Prof Tol said: 'Our paper had no relationship to the CCCEP. It came out of David Anthoff's masters thesis. At the time, the CCCEP did not exist, and it only came into existence after the paper was published. Fraud means deception for financial gain. That is what this is.'
Confusingly, the CCCEP sent data to the ESRC for two separate lists of the publications that should be 'attributed' to it, and although they mostly overlap, they are not identical. Both, however, are misleading.
The first list is a compilation of 276 journal articles submitted in late 2012, headed 'CCCEP publications October 2008 – August 2012'. The submission also includes dozens of works of journalism. Many of these were written by CCCEP spokesman Mr Ward on subjects such as the Scottish golf course owned by Donald Trump and vehement attacks on climate change sceptics.
When it submitted this list, which includes the paper co-authored by Prof Tol, the CCCEP had already been awarded £4.7 million by the ESRC and was asking for another £4.4 million. It received this amount to cover the period 2013 to 2018.
The centre also gets generous funds from other government and private sources, such as American green billionaire Jeremy Grantham. This year, it was awarded a £374,000 grant to pay for a three-year CCCEP fellowship by the British Academy, presided over by Lord Stern. These grants make it one of the most lavishly funded institutions of its kind in the world, with an income since 2008 of more than £30 million.
Lord Stern has also become personally wealthy through his climate change work. When it last filed accounts a year ago, his company, NS Economics Ltd, set up to handle his public speaking income, had a bank balance of £349,000. He is also paid as an advisory director of the giant Spanish solar energy firm Abengoa SA.
This newspaper has found further papers on the 2008 to 2012 list sent to the ESRC which were in fact completed before the CCCEP came into existence. One of them, jointly authored with CCCEP co-director Simon Dietz, is by Lord Stern himself – and first published on April 23, 2008, six months before the CCCEP opened.
Another paper, a study led by Natalie Suckall, now at Southampton University, dealt with 'cultural identity' in the Peak District National Park. Ms Suckall and her colleagues found that white, middle class people liked the scenery more than working class or ethnic minority visitors – a topic not obviously related to climate change.
This paper was first sent to the Journal of Environmental Management in March 2007, accepted in revised form in June the following year, and published on July 30, 2008, more than two months before the CCCEP existed.
Another example was a study led by Prof Tol's co-author, Prof Cameron Hepburn. Since 2010, he has had a part-time post at the LSE, in addition to his position at Oxford. But his paper on 'social discounting under uncertainty' was first submitted in 2006, and published online on September 5, 2008 – when there were still four weeks to go before the CCCEP began operating.
Mr Ward admitted that to tell the ESRC that a total of seven studies identified by the MoS had been funded by the CCCEP was a 'mistake'. But he insisted it was not misleading that the list claimed some of them had been published in 2009, because that was when they appeared on paper.
Dr Elizabeth Wager, editor of the journal Research Integrity and Peer Review and the former head of the international watchdog the Committee on Publication Ethics, disputed this. She said: 'Everyone regards the online date as the actual publication date. It is considered published the day it goes online.'
These and other papers clearly played a direct role in the ESRC's decision to award the second, £4.4 million grant. But the second list, an online record of CCCEP publications updated monthly and published on the government's research funding website, Gateway To Research, is equally questionable – suggesting the CCCEP has for years been inflating its reputation and the scale of its activity unjustifiably.
Some of the items on this list amount to blatant theft of credit which is due to others. For example, in 2011 Kersty Hobson, then at Oxford and now a professor at Cardiff, was lead author of a paper entitled Public Responses to Climate Change. Her co-author Simon Niemeyer was at the Australian National University in Canberra.
She told The Mail on Sunday: 'This paper had nothing whatsoever to do with the CCCEP. It was completely funded by the Australian Research Council.' Another case is a study led by Oxford's Prof Stephen Duncan on 'optimal harvesting of fish stocks under a time-varying discount rate', a highly technical paper based on data from the Peruvian anchovy industry in the 1970s. Prof Duncan said: 'This piece of research was not funded by the CCCEP. It came out of ideas three of us had at Oxford when we were all based here.'
Mr Ward disputed this, claiming that the CCCEP should have been 'properly acknowledged' because Prof Hepburn was a co-author.
Other papers on the Gateway To Research list bear no relation to climate change and the CCCEP's goals. One is called 'Traffic lights and food choice: a choice experiment examining the relationship between nutritional food labels and price.'
Lead author Prof Kelvin Balcombe, of Reading University, said: 'I certainly wouldn't think it appropriate to claim this as a CCCEP output. It's not about climate change. And they had nothing to do with it.'
Mr Ward admitted including this on the list was a mistake, as was a paper on noise pollution and its effect on human happiness by the LSE's Diana Weinhold. He said: 'Some publications have been mistakenly uploaded.' It would take steps to put this right.
Academic funding experts reacted with astonishment to our investigation. Lord Willetts, the Universities Minister from 2010 to 2014, said: 'There is an assumption that academics are bound by ethical principles. The system relies on trust as well as policing by administrators.'
Dr Wager said: 'It's troubling the funder has not spotted this. If you're claiming credit for work when you shouldn't, that is not fair to other institutions who play by the rules.'
Former Labour Minister Lord Donaghue, a governor of the LSE for 25 years, called for an inquiry, saying: 'To preserve the academic integrity of the LSE, it is necessary that the relevant funding authorities launch a full investigation.'
The ESRC said the second phase of the CCCEP's grant was paid because the council concluded that 'the work of the centre had been excellent'.
Mr Ward said the CCCEP is a 'world class university research centre', and when it asked for the second slice of funding from the ESRC, it submitted in all '520 research and policy outputs' and 139 media articles. He added: 'We reject any suggestion that we misrepresented the outputs of the Centre in our submission to the mid-term review.' He claimed our investigation was an attempt to 'promote climate change denial'.
Australia: Slow and steady on climate policy
The Turnbull government will ensure the next phase of its climate policy meets Australia's obligations under the Paris deal but isn't "messianic", Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce says.
The government will review its full suite of climate policies in 2017, as the emissions reduction fund exhausts its $2.55 billion budget and the coalition looks to other methods to cut carbon pollution.
Environmental groups have concerns the review will provide a smokescreen to drop climate action and respond to sceptics within the government and on the Senate crossbench who see it as a waste of taxpayers' money.
Mr Joyce told reporters in Brisbane on Monday the government would ensure it met its Paris target - to reduce emissions by 26-28 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030 - which builds on its 2020 target of reducing emissions by five per cent below 2000 levels.
"We believe in our obligations as signed off by an international treaty in Paris and we'll make sure we meet them," Mr Joyce said.
"We are on target to meet them at the moment and we are doing it at a vastly more affordable way than the Labor party ever was."
But he said the government would not achieve the target "by changing the whole world, like the ACT, to 100 per cent renewables - what a load of crock".
"We are not going be a messianic figure out there by ourselves," he said.
Labor leader Bill Shorten said he would like the review to be conducted in a bipartisan way.
"(But) we're not going to get bipartisanship while Malcolm Turnbull has lost his spine on climate change," Mr Shorten told reporters in Perth.
"He did have it once, no questioning that, but now he's so keen to keep his job he'll swap climate change policy for climate scepticism ... he won't take any real action in terms of the fundamental issues including standing up for renewable energy."
Mr Turnbull's deal with the Rudd Labor government on a carbon pollution reduction scheme ended with his own party dumping him in favour of Tony Abbott.
For more postings from me, see DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here.
Preserving the graphics: Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere. But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases. After that they no longer come up. From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site. See here or here
Posted by JR at 1:31 AM