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Insider turns heretic as Rudd announces ETS

  • July 18th, 2008

A columnist in today’s Australian doesn’t make it any easier for Australian politicians. Dr David Evans has good credentials

"I devoted six years to carbon accounting, building models for the Australian Greenhouse Office. I am the rocket scientist who wrote the carbon accounting model (FullCAM) that measures Australia’s compliance with the Kyoto Protocol, in the land use change and forestry sector."

His conclusion is unequivocal:

"What is going to happen over the next decade as global temperatures continue not to rise? The Labor Government is about to deliberately wreck the economy in order to reduce carbon emissions. If the reasons later turn out to be bogus, the electorate is not going to re-elect a Labor government for a long time. When it comes to light that the carbon scare was known to be bogus in 2008, the ALP is going to be regarded as criminally negligent or ideologically stupid for not having seen through it. And if the Liberals support the general thrust of their actions, they will be seen likewise.

The onus should be on those who want to change things to provide evidence for why the changes are necessary. The Australian public is eventually going to have to be told the evidence anyway, so it might as well be told before wrecking the economy."

Yet non-scientist politicians in a democracy have little choice but to respond when there is equally ‘conclusive’ scientific opinion going the other way, apparently from more scientists.

I see the dilemma as being very similar to the never ending defence spending question. Violently opposed opinions on the nature, source, imminence, cause, remedy and direction of threat are held by intelligent, sincere and well informed people. We will only ever know in hindsight who was right, but the consequences of backing the wrong opinion can be enormous. Frequently the right thing (in hindsight) was to dither and do nothing, but sometimes that is fatal. 

It would be desperately negligent not to at least get machinery in place to depress carbon emissions. Whether it is ever fully cranked up is another question. The Aussie system is  clearly designed with room for second thoughts and delay. In the time before the machinery is fully operational much more will be learned about the problem.

Our ETS, on the other hand, seems designed more for a hair shirt fashion parade than to solve the problem. Our leaderettes seem to find hair shirts strangely becoming.



Dr Evans comments are indeed disturbing. What I find even more disturbing is that the Royal Society of NZ appears to have abandoned scientific objectivity and become a front for the warmists.

See here for details, including a complete tear-down of their press release, by Dr Vincent Gray who has resigned from the Royal Society in protest.

  • JC
  • July 19th, 2008
  • 7:58 pm

The silly damn thing is that we can indeed achieve most of what we need to achieve re carbon by just continuing a fight against pollution and acknowledging a strategic need to be more self sufficient in non oil based energy.

But.. we need to clear away such foolishness of penalising our domestic animals for their farts and belches whiles ignoring those of non domestic animals and insisting on European solutions that have little relevance here.


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