Tag Archives: Al Gore

April 25, 2000 “Beyond Kyoto: Australia’s efforts to combat global warming”

On this day Senator the Hon Robert Hill,  spoke at a meeting of the Pew Centre on Global Climate Change in Washington. The title –  ‘Beyond Kyoto Australia’s efforts to combat global warming’.

As the man said – “The road to policy agreement is paved with good intentions, the road to implementation is lined with the potholes of reality.”

The Liberals had continued the ALP’s hostility to an international climate regime, and amplified it.  Hill had gotten a “good” deal for Australia at the 1997 Kyoto conference – a 108% emissions “reduction” target (i.e. an increase), and – crucially – a land-clearing clause that effectively increased that 108% to about 130 percent.  Hill had apparently refused to attempt to get 118%, and is well-regarded by environmentalists known to this author.  Hill had signed the Kyoto Protocol for Australia in April of 1998. Later that year it emerged that Cabinet had decided not to ratify unless the USA did.  In April 2000 the US Presidential election was still 7 months away. It was an election where Al Gore would win the popular vote, but lose in the Supreme Court. So it goes.  Bush pulled out of Kyoto, and Australia followed in 2002, by which time Hill had been moved from Environment to Defence…

July 17th, 2014 – Australian carbon tax repealed

A year ago today, in an act of intergenerational vandalism that will be the only thing that Tony Abbott is remembered for, the Australian Senate repealed Julia Gillard’s carbon tax. You could not make it up, really.

Also on this day.
1991 Gore v Bush Sr on climate
Mr. GORE. Mr. President, I rise to introduce a resolution that calls on President Bush to provide the environmental leadership he has promised. Soon, the nations of the world will meet for the third preparatory committee meeting for the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development. We have now passed a critical point in those meetings; less than a year remains before the conference will take place in Brazil. The conference provides a truly historic opportunity for all of the countries of the world to join together to chart a future for the planet that is bright for our environment as well as for our economies. I am afraid, however, that the critical importance of the meeting is escaping the President.

July 9th, 1970 – Nixon, under pressure, establishes the EPA

President Richard ‘I am not a crook’ Nixon works with Congress to establish the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), a new Federal agency primarily responsible for United States environmental policy.

Under extreme pressure!

It was this sort of ‘cave-in’ that compelled business to get its game face on from the early 1970s onwards.  Ooh, look, here comes neoliberalism.

Also on this day
2001 Paula Dobriansky, Undersecretary of State and Don ‘Climate Council’ Pearlman meet
2008 Bush at G8 says “Goodbye from the world’s greatest polluter”

As ever, see the disclaimers, help the project and comments policy.

May 1st – protests, texts, research is “money down a rat hole”;

Normally I pick one “event”. Today, there’s a bunch.  In chronological order;

1971 May Day protests in Washington – non-violent direct action protests in Washington. Met with violence by police, then memory-holed…

1981 John Perry’s “Energy and Climate- Energy and Climate: Today’s Problem, Not Tomorrow’s” guest editorial received for journal Climatic Change Volume 3, Issue 3, pp 223-225

may1st1981

1992 French diplomat Jean Rippert presents(almost) final text of UNFCCC to the Fifth “Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee” meeting. Basically, the Americans have “won.” There will be no targets and timetables in the text to be agreed at Rio.  (Meanwhile, European business is conducting a HUGE lobbying campaign against a proposed European carbon tax)

1992 Al Gore’s Earth in the Balance published (according to Amazon!)

1996 Republican congressman Dana Rohrabacher says  that “global warming research is really money right down a rathole”

“In the final budget meeting of the Science Committee on May 1, 1996, Walker asked Rohrabacher for his opinion of the various government programs to monitor climate change. Rohrabacher’s response reflects the contempt in which he holds this hard-won scientific evidence. “I think that money that goes into this global warming research is really money right down a rathole,” he said.” Gelbspan, R. (1998) Page 76-7

2006 While Washington Slept article by Mark Hertsgaard

As ever, see the disclaimers, help the project and comments policy.

April 21st, 1993 – Clinton announces US will return its emissions to 1990 levels by 2000

“Fortunately, the Clinton-Gore Administration has begun to reverse this situation and to put the US in the position it should have been in almost two years ago through President Clinton’s commitment in his Earth Day address on April 21, 1993 to reduce US greenhouse gas emissions in 2000 to their 1990 levels. The Administration will develop a revised national Action Plan on Climate Change to fulfil this commitment.”

Nitze (1994) Page 198

Which would have meant they were meeting the UNFCCC agreement target of the previous June.

Did they make that?  You’ve not been paying attention, have you?

As ever, see the disclaimers, help the project and comments policy.