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Clear message of CSIRO climate change report: Stop fiddling while Australia burns!

“The message of the CSIRO and Bureau of Meteorology report to the Australian Climate Change Science Program couldn’t be simpler”, Dr Kamala Emanuel, the Socialist Alliance’s Climate Change Coordinator and New South Wales Senate candidate said today.

“It is dramatically blunt—stop fiddling while Australia burns!”

Dr Emanuel stressed that no objective person after reading the report could now doubt that Australia’s climate change crisis is already well under way.

“Australian average temperatures have already risen by 0.9ºC since 1950 and, according to the report, the best estimate of further average warming increase is 1º by 2030, with a 50% probability of the warming increase exceeding this figure in inland areas.

“That takes us perilously close to the 2ºC increase identified by climate science as the point at which runaway global warming could be unleashed.

“Moreover, the report establishes that in a business-as-usual scenario there’s a 90% likelihood of warming exceeding this figure by 2070.”

Dr Emanuel stressed: “This report reinforces the findings of every new serious study of global warming—it’s happening faster and more dangerously than previously imagined.

“This science shows the utter inadequacy of Coalition and Labor policy on the issue”, she underlined. “It confirms that to have any chance of arresting global warming we have to keep the concentration of greenhouse gases below 450 parts per million of carbon dioxide equivalent.

“But Howard’s and Rudd’s fiddling guarantee that greenhouse gas concentration will exceed this level.”

Dr Emanuel said that only the accelerated introduction of renewable and sustainable energy sources could achieve the necessary goal of reducing Australian greenhouse gas emissions by 4-5% a year.

“To really start making gains against greenhouse we need an emergency program of sustainable energy conversion that sets a ten-year limit for completely phasing out coal.

The Socialist Alliance candidate said that the recent news of the take-up of the University of New South Wales´s solar thermal technology by US companies confirmed that sustainable energy technology is “begging to be applied”.

“But”, she added, “this simply will not happen at the rate needed if left to private investors, no matter how generous the tax breaks offered. .The sustainable energy transition will only happen fast enough if there’s a huge government effort to implement it.”

“The disgrace of the UNSW solar thermal technology finally reaching production outside Australia dramatises how miserably inadequate the Coalition and Labor both are on climate change”, Dr Emanuel concluded.

“A government dedicated to attacking greenhouse would have poured funds and expertise into projects like that at UNSW, accelerating the setting-up of pilot plants and full-scale commercial operation.”

“That’s the approach of the Socialist Alliance, as spelled out in the Socialist Alliance’s Climate Change Charter. And it’s the only serious way to stop Australia—and our planet—from burning.”

FURTHER INFORMATION: Kamala Emanuel 0417 319 662

Email: kamala@intas.net.au

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