Climate Scepticism And The Triumph Of Tony Abbott

September 9, 2013

09 Sept (GLOBAL WARMING POLICY FOUNDATION) Australia’s Prime Minister-elect Tony Abbott has personally instructed his new departmental secretary to make preparations to axe the carbon tax.

Dr. Benny Peiser

Mr Abbott got down to business this morning after his landslide election victory, with a briefing with Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet Secretary Ian Watt. “Obviously, a very early item of business is scrapping the carbon tax,” he told Dr Watt at the commencement of their meeting. –Ben Packham, The Australian, 8 September 2013

According to the conventional wisdom of just a few years ago, Tony Abbott should never have become prime minister of Australia. The doyens of the press gallery had marked him as a right-wing throwback to a bygone era. After all, Mr. Abbott is skeptical about alarmist claims of man-made global warming. –Tom Switzer, The Wall Street Journal, 9 September 2013

Australia’s Prime Minister-elect Tony Abbott

For two years, the global warming debate had been conducted in a heretic-hunting and illiberal environment. It was deemed blasphemy for anyone to dare question not only the climate science but the policy consensus to decarbonize the economy. Mr. Rudd even claimed that climate change was the “great moral challenge” of our time and even denounced critics of cap and trade as “deniers” and “conspiracy theorists.” Mr. Abbott, then widely written off as a remnant of the Howard era, decided to challenge the media-political zeitgeist. Cap and trade, he argued, merely amounted to economic pain for no environmental gain, especially for a nation that accounted for only 1.4% of greenhouse gas emissions. He contested the Liberal party leadership, winning by a single vote. –Tom Switzer, The Wall Street Journal, 9 September 2013

For more than a decade Australia had one of the world’s most successful center-right governments, and on Saturday it voted overwhelmingly for a restoration. After six years of Labor Party melodrama and leftward economic policies, Australians returned a Liberal government to power under new leader Tony Abbott. There are lessons here for conservatives in the U.S. and Europe. One lesson is to beware the faddish politics of climate change. –Editorial, The Wall Street Journal, 9 September 2013

The World Wide Fund for Nature financed full-page adverts in Australian newspapers that awarded him a fail grade on every key environmental issue. Mr Abbott doesn’t care and neither, it seems, do Australian voters. In a decision that could not have been more different from Mr Cameron’s decision to mimic the environmental priorities of the Left, Mr Abbott has refused to accept inflated energy prices, fewer manufacturing jobs and higher carbon taxes as the price for not saving the planet. “Not” is the key word. Australia might be willing to bear sacrifices if global emissions were falling, but they aren’t. Unilateral action by nations such as Australia produces drop-in-the-ocean benefits if the likes of China and India continue to guzzle energy. –Tim Montgomery, The Times, 9 September 2013

In his victory speech on Saturday night, Australia’s new Prime Minister Tony Abbott repeated his promise to scrap the carbon tax. Declaring the election a “referendum on the carbon tax”, Mr Abbott said last week he thought it ”unimaginable” that a defeated Labor Party would stifle his ”mandate” to repeal the tax. Mr Abbott promised he would do whatever was necessary to ”scrap the tax” within his first year in government, even if it meant getting blocked in the Senate and sending Australians to another election through a double dissolution. –Jonathan Swan, The Age, 7 September 2013

Europe’s industry is being ravaged by exorbitant energy costs and an over-valued euro, blighting efforts to reverse years of global manufacturing decline. “We face a systemic industrial massacre,” said Antonio Tajani, the European industry commissioner. Mr Tajani warned that Europe’s quixotic dash for renewables was pushing electricity costs to untenable levels, leaving Europe struggling to compete as America’s shale revolution cuts US natural gas prices by 80pc. European president Herman Van Rompuy echoed the growing sense of alarm, calling it a top EU priority to slash energy costs. –Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, The Daily Telegraph, 9 September 2013

I am in favour of a green agenda, but we can’t be religious about this. We need a new energy policy. We have to stop pretending, because we can’t sacrifice Europe’s industry for climate goals that are not realistic, and are not being enforced worldwide. –Antonio Tajani, EU Industry Commissioner, The Daily Telegraph, 9 September 2013

The Global Warming Policy Foundation is pleased to announce that the 2013 Annual GWPF Lecture will be delivered by The Hon John Howard, former Prime Minister of Australia. The Global Warming Policy Foundation

A chilly Arctic summer has left nearly a million more square miles of ocean covered with ice than at the same time last year – an increase of 60 per cent. The rebound from 2012’s record low comes six years after the BBC reported that global warming would leave the Arctic ice-free in summer by 2013. Some eminent scientists now believe the world is heading for a period of cooling that will not end until the middle of this century – a process that would expose computer forecasts of imminent catastrophic warming as dangerously misleading. –David Rose, Mail on Sunday, 8 September 2013

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