According to the excellent Lenore Taylor, on this day two years ago Prime Minister Tony Abbott was on the radio show of Alan Jones. It was, as you can imagine, a high quality conversation….
Speaking to the Sydney radio host Alan Jones – a long-term windfarm critic – the prime minister said: “I do take your point about the potential health impact of these things … when I’ve been up close to these windfarms not only are they visually awful but they make a lot of noise.”
Taylor, L. 2015. Tony Abbott agrees windfarms may have ‘potential health impacts’. The Guardian, 11 June.
see also: Wind Beneath Their Contempt: Why Australian policy makers oppose solar and wind energy.
Also on this day –
Green, J. 2002. WMC’s hypocrisy on greenhouse emissions. Green Left Weekly
“On June 10, Hugh Matheson Morgan AO, chief executive of WMC Limited, was awarded a Companion of the Order of Australia for services to business, “particularly through leadership in the formation and evolution of sustainable development policy”. What a joke!”
John Howard on giving Wilson Tuckey Forestry – “he has a sense of humour”.
Ian Lowe almost not being given Aus Environmentalist of the Year and Howard then changing the judging system to prevent further ‘problems’
The Climate Institute (soon to be RIP), got the boot stuck into the BCA on this day three years ago.
The Business Council of Australia’s loss of status with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development is unsurprising as the BCA has displayed a remarkable lack of policy consistency over recent years.
Its position appears to be driven more by short-termism than a thorough assessment of the economic risks to Australia of further global warming. This lack of concern is particularly disturbing as Australia is more exposed to climate change than any other developed country. We are already experiencing the economic and human impacts of the less than one degree warming to date and these costs will rise. Global warming above two degrees exceeds the adaptive capacity of many Australian industries.
Also on this day-
1992 Dr Hewson captured the full flavour of the initiative in a speech to the Australian Mining Industry Council annual dinner on May 7, 1992, when he described it as sustainable development with a capital D. This move is really an exercise in fast-tracking, with an absolute limit of 12 months on government processes of evaluation, failing which the project gets automatic go-ahead.
This is dangerous, based as it is on the assumption that red, black or green tape is simply frustrating developments, rather than complex issues being carefully evaluated. There is also a quite dishonest attempt to list a long list of stalled projects without acknowledging that many had not proceeded for commercial reasons.
Toyne, P. 1993. Environment forgotten in the race to the Lodge. Canberra Times, 8 March p. 11.
2002 Howarth, I. 2002. Report card on mining industry to be unveiled. Australian Financial Review, 7 May, p. 14.
The Australian mining industry still has a long way to go in its quest for sustainable development, but a major report on the sector has found it has made considerable progress in meeting its social and environmental obligations.
WMC chief executive, Hugh Morgan, will today unveil the Facing the Future report, which investigated the Australian mining industry as part of the Global Mining Initiative undertaken by the world’s biggest miners.
2015: Reef plans based on fact not NGO fiction Statement by Queensland Resources Council Chief Executive Michael Roche
Today we welcome the announcements from federal and state governments who are getting on with job of dealing with the top priority issues affecting the Great Barrier Reef.
The Queensland Government’s Minister for the Great Barrier Reef Steven Miles has announced the creation of a new taskforce of experts to improve the reef’s water quality, which will be led by the state’s chief scientist Dr Geoff Garrett.
The Howard government’s ability to constrain public pressure for climate change action had in part rested on the claim that business was united in its opposition to, say, Kyoto Protocol ratification. This was always nonsense (do you think renewable energy proponents, or carbon traders, or insurers, for instance, would be opposed? What about the gas industry?). But this appearance of unity was assisted by the Business Council of Australia. Eventually, however, the internal ructions became too much, and it moved from opposition to ‘no position’. Then Hugh Morgan became President. And it was only at the end of 2006 that things shifted. Fortunately, we have loads of time to deal with climate change, so the additional wait didn’t matter. Oh yes…
“Business support for the Federal Government’s hardline position on climate change is crumbling, with the Business Council yesterday scrapping its outright opposition to the Kyoto Protocol.”
Garnaut, J. 2003. Business shifts tack on Kyoto. The Age, 1 March.
Also on this day –
Chamberlin, P. 1995. Cabinet to review gas reduction options. Canberra Times, 28 February p.2.
“A plan to take Australia about 40 per cent of the way towards meeting international obligations on reducing greenhouse gas emissions will be discussed by the Cabinet today, with schemes designed to tempt top-level industry involvement.”
2007 The denialists got going, with a launch at Parliament House for this little doozy – Nine Facts about Climate Change Ray Evans [Originally published in November 2006 as a PDF (click here, 1.5 Mb). Launched in Canberra by Sir Arvi Parbo on 28 February 2007](Parbo had been a founder of the Business Council of Australia, btw).