Combet: Australia will sign up to Kyoto II


From ABC comes news that Greg Combet will sign up to an agreement that doesn’t exist yet, as the talks to finalise it are happening next month:

Australia will sign up to the next phase of the Kyoto Protocol on cutting greenhouse gas emissions, despite concerns from environmentalists that carbon reduction targets remain too low.

The current agreement is due to expire this year, although agreement on a new globally-binding deal is not expected until 2015. 

Climate Change Minister Greg Combet has announced that Australia is willing to sign up to the next phase of the Kyoto agreement, which will effectively act as a bridging deal until a new long-term plan can be agreed to. 

Read it here.

Canada abandons Kyoto

Climate heroes

But, but, but… Kyoto was so successful at reducing emissions! Not.

Canada has become the first country to announce it will officially pull out of the Kyoto accord on reducing greenhouse gases.

Canadian environment minister Peter Kent said it was not economically feasible for Canada to continue under the rules of the Kyoto agreement in 2012.

He made the announcement two hours after returning to Ottawa from the climate talks in Durban, where countries agreed to extend Kyoto for five years and hammer out a new deal forcing all big polluters for the first time to limit greenhouse gas emissions.

Canada, a major energy producer which critics complain is becoming a climate renegade, has long complained Kyoto is unworkable precisely because it excludes so many significant emitters.

“As we’ve said, Kyoto for Canada is in the past … We are invoking our legal right to formally withdraw from Kyoto,” Mr Kent told reporters.

He said the decision would save the government $14 billion a year in penalties and blamed what he called an incompetent Liberal government that signed the accord but then took little action to make the necessary emissions cuts.

“To meet the targets under Kyoto for 2012 would be the equivalent of either removing every car, truck, all-terrain vehicle, tractor, ambulance, police car and vehicle off every kind of Canadian road,” Mr Kent said.

He said the Kyoto accord was “an impediment” to finding a real solution to climate change because it does not include the world’s largest emitters, China and the United States. (source)

Climate sense from the Canadians. We envy you here in the country of climate madness.

Kyoto Clean Development Mechanism "basically a farce"

The UN at work

Why does this not surprise me in the least? Virtually everything remotely connected with the UN is “basically a farce”, but this disaster has been exposed more comprehensively than most. As Nature reports:

Critics have long questioned the usefulness of the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), which was established under the Kyoto Protocol. It allows rich countries to offset some of their carbon emissions by investing in climate-friendly projects, such as hydroelectric power and wind farms, in developing countries. Verified projects earn certified emission reductions (CERs) — carbon credits that can be bought and sold, and count towards meeting rich nations’ carbon-reduction targets.

But a diplomatic cable published last month by the WikiLeaks website reveals that most of the CDM projects in India should not have been certified because they did not reduce emissions beyond those that would have been achieved without foreign investment. Indian officials have apparently known about the problem for at least two years.

“What has leaked just confirms our view that in its present form the CDM is basically a farce,” says Eva Filzmoser, programme director of CDM Watch, a Brussels-based watchdog organization. The revelations imply that millions of tonnes of claimed reductions in greenhouse-gas emissions are mere phantoms, she says, and potentially cast doubt over the principle of carbon trading. “In the face of these comments it is no wonder that the United States has backed away from emission trading,” Filzmoser says.

[Yet] on the evidence of discussions at the meeting, most of the carbon-offset projects in India fail to meet the CDM requirements set by the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. The cable also describes the UN’s validation and registration process as “arbitrary”. 

Once again, this kind of revelation demonstrates that climate mitigation policies are nothing more than pointless gimmicks, moving billions of dollars around the globe for minimal or no environmental benefit whatsoever.

Commenter on the article William Eschenbach sums it up:

I love the CDM. It takes money from people in Europe who wouldn’t dream of allowing a hydroelectric dam to be built in their country, and gives it to China to build … of course … hydroelectric dams.

Couldn’t be a better symbol for the whole climate madness.

Read it here.

(h/t Bryan H)

Peter Spencer: hunger strike against carbon scandal

Peter Spencer

Peter Spencer

Peter Spencer is on the 23rd day of a hunger strike, on a 2 metre platform 10 metres off the ground. As Crikey explains:

Peter says that Federal Government has declared his 5,385 hectare property a carbon Sink without compensating him. Peter had never wanted to clear his land, but under the vegetation management act the entire property is rendered off limits to any form of development.

These effected Australian farmers have been responsible for virtually the entire burden of the Nation’s greenhouse gas emission reductions but their efforts worth billions of dollars have not been recognized or financially rewarded.

These farming families have reduced greenhouse gas emissions by about 70 million tonnes since 1990 and by 2010 the saving will be about 83.7million tonnes. To put that into context that is equivalent to eliminating the entire annual emissions of New Zealand or Ireland. Over that same period of time emissions from energy and transport have continued to skyrocket.

Hide the takings

Peter’s hunger strike has gathered support from grassroots people from Australia, the US, UK, Pakistan and Malaysia. On the Peter Spencer Hunger Strike causes site over 150 people have been lobbying frantically to  get the mainstream media to cover the story and for politicians to intervene on Peter’s behalf.

Peter’s supporters have been bombarding State and Federal Labor, Liberal and National Party Politicians and the mainstream media to bring attention to his cause.

But Peter’s story is being stonewalled by the mainstream media and Politicians of all colours and creeds. So far they have managed to have Peter’s story covered by 2GB’s Alan Jones with a live interview with Peter Spencer and his barrister Peter King by mobile phone on Tuesday morning and one with Alastair McRobert who is at the property with Peter onThursday morning and a 5 minute spot on Channel 9’s A Current affair on Thursday night (the video above).

Fairfax Media, News Corporation and the ABC have steadfastly refused to run the story except for The Telegraph which ran a small piece last Sunday on page 42 titled He’s the Darryl Kerrigan of Climate Change.

[Read more…]

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