Feb 16, 2005 – John Howard says Kyoto “next to useless”

So, after years of claiming the Kyoto Protocol would never be ratified by enough countries – what with the US and Australia both refusing- naysayers were proved wrong when the Russians, for reasons of their own, ratified in late 1994, causing the Protocol to become international law (such as it is) and presenting Australia with both presentational and diplomatic issues. Prime Minister John Howard was not, at this stage, perturbed (the perturbations would only begin in late 2006…)

AAP. 2005. Kyoto Protocol ‘next to useless’: PM. Sydney Morning Herald, 16 February. 

Prime Minister John Howard has reaffirmed the government’s opposition to the Kyoto Protocol on climate change on the day the pact came into effect.

The opposition used Question Time to put more pressure on the government over its refusal to join the treaty which has been signed by 141 countries.

Labor leader Kim Beazley asked Prime Minister John Howard about conflicting comments on climate change from two government ministers.

He read one media report quoting Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane as saying he did not know whether greenhouse emissions caused climate change.

Another quoted Environment Minister Ian Campbell saying there was a need to engage sceptics who did not believe climate change was real.

“I think they are both splendid ministers and of course I agree with them both,” Mr Howard answered…..

Also on this day –

Nick Minchin, who would later play a crucial role in getting rid of Malcolm Turnbull as opposition leader, over the latter’s support for Kevin Rudd’s CPRS, was resisting the change of mood mentioned above…

Murphy, K. 2007. Lib scorns mass ‘panic’ on climate. The Age, 17 February.
It SHOULD not be seen as a sin to be cautious about the science of global warming, a senior Federal Government minister has warned.
Finance Minister Nick Minchin says “there remains an ongoing debate about the extent of climate change” and the extent of human activity’s role in global warming….

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