On this day ten years ago the new Labor opposition Leader Kevin Rudd made a speech about “greatest moral challenge of our generation” at a climate summit he organised at Parliament House in Canberra, part of the strategy to make John Howard look out-of-touch and untrustworthy on climate change (which he was).
He was right. And we did not raise to meet the challenge. Oops.
Also on this day –
1998 – “Greenhouse Beyond Kyoto: Issues, Opportunities and Challenges” Bureau of Resource Sciences, 31 March – 1st April 1998
2007 Gittins, R. 2007, ‘Carbon trading v taxes—a winner eases ahead’, The Sydney Morning Herald, 31 March, p. 47.
2007 First Earth Hour’ – with lights ostentatiously going out all over the world…. Ray Evans was under-chuffed….” A recent example of intellectual corruption at the highest levels of Australian business was manifest when the Sydney Morning Herald teamed up with WWF to promote ‘Earth Hour’ on Saturday 31 March last. The idea was that, at 7:30 pm, everyone in Sydney should turn off their lights and shut down their TVs, and so on, in order to save the planet for an hour.”
The late Ray Evans was a culture warrior of the old school. There wasn’t a rightwing pie (union bashing, opposing aboriginal land rights etc, you name it) that he didn’t have an opinion on, a finger in the pie. In an April 2007 speech about climate change, he quoted this email from Fairfax (owners of the Sydney Morning Herald, the (Melbourne) Age and the Australian Financial Review)
Sent: Thursday, 22 March 2007 9:06 AM
Subject: EARTH HOUR – A MESSAGE TO ALL STAFF
When the lights of Sydney are turned off for one hour at 7.30pm on Saturday, March 31, we should take a moment to reflect, with pride, on the role Fairfax Media has played in Earth Hour.
For the past eight months, the Earth Hour working group has been meeting every Tuesday on Level 19 at Darling Park to plan this bold event.
Every strand of our business – management, editorial, online, commercial, marketing and production – has been involved in the planning process.
For Evans “What is important in this context is that the senior management of one of Australia’s most important media companies, Fairfax Ltd, publisher of the Melbourne Age, the SMH and the Australian Financial Review,sees no difficulty in enlisting all Fairfax staff in the prosecution of a cause which has been described by Cardinal George Pell as a manifestation of ‘pagan emptiness’.”
Also on this day-
2013 Martin Ferguson, seen by some as an unusually pro-mining Resources Minister resigns, in the aftermath of the leadership challenge that never was.