Tag Archives: UNEP

Jan 23, 2013- Australian coal mining versus the planet….

On this day in 2013, the Age journo Tom Arup starts a piece

The forecast expansion of Australian coal mining and exports would be the world’s second-largest contributor of new carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels if fully realised, research by Greenpeace International has found.

An analysis of the planet’s 14 largest proposed, coal, oil and gas developments – to be released on Wednesday by Greenpeace – finds if Australian coal production expands as projected, the mining, production and burning of the extra resources would by 2020 result in 759 million tonnes of new global carbon dioxide emissions a year over 2011 levels.

It’s based on Greenpeace International report called  “Point of No Return


Also on this day –

In 1992 , A report on an early(ish) dose of denial appears in the Australian Financial Review,

Lawson, M. 1992. Cooling the global warming predictions.  The Australian Financial Review, 23 January .

In 1995, economist John Quiggin quixotically makes the case that a carbon tax could provide more jobs….”there is no reason to suppose that business as a whole would necessarily lose from such a tax.” 

Quiggin, J. 1995. Carbon tax could make more jobs. The Australian Financial Review, 23 January.

In 2001 the Sydney Morning Herald had a front page story based on the Third Assessment Report of the IPCC


World temperatures may increase by as much as six degrees Celsius over the next century, leading climate change scientists say in an alarming report that adds new urgency to the warnings on global warming.

The projected increase, which would be the most rapid temperature change in the past 10,000 years, is expected to push sea levels up by nearly a metre, threatening tens of millions of people, and generate more floods, droughts and fires.

The report found that the 1990s were the hottest decade since instrument records were first taken in 1861 and that 1998 was the hottest year. And for the first time scientists agreed that the warming is mostly due to human activity.

The gloomy prognosis was released in Shanghai yesterday by the respected Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a joint project of the United Nation’s Environment Program (UNEP) and the World Meteorological Organisation.

Schauble, J. 2001. Six Degrees Hotter: Global Climate Alarm Bells Ring Louder. Sydney Morning Herald, 23 January, p.1.

In 2005 A report, co-authored by the UK Institute of Public Policy Research, the US “Centre for American Progress” and the Australia Institute was released. It was called “Meeting the Climate Challenge” According to ippr – “This interim report, setting out the taskforce’s recommendations, is both a practical policy handbook, and passionate call for action on this most vital of issues.” [Actually, I think the report was launched Jan 1st, just slow on the ippr blog. Not sure though].

June 16th, 1972- Un Conference on the Human Environment ends

Forty three years ago today, in Stockholm, the UN Conference on the Human Environment ended.  It gave us… um… the United Nations Environment Programme.  And, um….

Meanwhile, 22 years after that (1994), business started telling the Keating Government how to throw out a drag anchor on the international negotiations around climate change (the UNFCCC had entered into force, and the first meeting was happening in March of 1995. Pressure was building for real targets, something that the previous US administration (Bush Snr) had scuppered.  Australian business knew that with Clinton in the Whitehouse, they could not rely on the US as “blocker”…

Gill, P. (1994) CALL TO FORM STRATEGIC ALLIANCES The Australian Financial Review 17th June

BUSINESS groups have called on the Federal Government to form strategic alliances with other countries to maximise its negotiating position in future climate change negotiations.The suggestion at yesterday’s round table follows widespread concern in the business community that Australia might be forced into a greenhouse response which is not in its interests.While the form of any alliance on greenhouse gas has not been spelt out, it could be modelled on the Cairns Group of 14 agricultural exporters which played a key role in the Uruguay Round of world trade talks.It is understood the Cairns Group model has been informally discussed by industry representatives concerned that Australia will have little influence in the negotiations.A paper prepared for yesterday’s round table by the Australian Coal Association and the Australian Mining Industry Council says it is “high time we stopped mouthing undefinable expressions” and pursued more precision in a so-called “burden-sharing agreement”.

Also on this day
1981 Jules Charney dies
2004 Howard launches idiotic energy white paper, with minimal mention of climate change (plus ca change, eh?)

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