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We’ll fight you all the way, airlines warn EU over carbon-trading plans

Dan Milmo, The Guardian
British and other European governments face a long diplomatic battle if they push ahead with plans to include airlines in a European emissions trading scheme, the global aviation body has warned.

The International Air Transport Association (Iata) said 170 countries opposed a proposal, approved last week by MEPs, to make all airlines flying in and out of the European Union subscribe to the EU emissions trading scheme. Non-EU airlines are lobbying their governments to reject the move, arguing that it will impose billions in extra costs on an industry that makes a global profit of just $5.6bn (£2.7bn).

…The US has warned of a trade fight if its major airlines, which have struggled financially for years, are forced to join the scheme.
(19 November 2007)
Planet or profits? We don’t have much time. -BA

Climate change will destroy Asia’s gains, study says

Mark Milner, The Guardian
Global warming will send Asia’s social and economic progress into reverse unless immediate action is taken to tackle climate change, according to a report today.

Wealthy countries should slash greenhouse gas emissions and help Asian countries reduce their reliance on fossil fuels by promoting and investing in sustainable and renewable energy across the region, according to the report, entitled Up in Smoke? Asia and the Pacific.

The paper, published by the Working Group on Climate Change and Development, a group of environmental and development organisations, says more than 60% of the world’s population live in Asia, many in coastal areas and on small farms where they are particularly vulnerable to the effects of climate change.
(19 November 2007)

An Earth-sized challenge lobbed our way

Marian Wilkinson, Sydney Morning Herald
“BE THE change you want to see in the world.” The words of Mahatma Gandhi were carefully chosen by the head of the United Nations peak scientific body on climate change when he delivered his team’s stark report to the world at the weekend.

Dr Rajendra Pachauri and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change have presented a daunting challenge not only to the world’s leaders but to its people. Cut your use of polluting fossil fuel energy over the next four decades essentially by 85 per cent or face losing almost a third of the world’s species.

This challenge has never been seriously put to the leaders of the two main parties in the election campaign, even though the Minister for the Environment, Malcolm Turnbull, has voiced it as a theoretical notion.

Only the Greens have been willing to suggest targets of this size for Australia, and have been condemned by the Government and some industry quarters as being grossly irresponsible. Now these cuts are being endorsed by experts who are also telling us we can afford to do it.

But this reports contains very bad news for Australia. Not only does it suggest climate change will have a big effect on our ability to grow food in a large part of the country that was once our fruit basket, it seriously suggests, whatever the heady resource projections now, our days of riding on a coal train are numbered.

“Fossil fuel exporting nations,” the report says, “may expect … lower demand and prices and lower GDP growth due to mitigation policies.” That is, policies that force nations to take up new, cleaner fuel sources.
(19 November 2007)
Big Gav seems disgusted with the main candidates (Use Your Vote Wisely):

I’m sure regular readers won’t need any urging, but just in case you are deaf and blind (as one guy who read for over 2 years before “resigning” in a huff a couple of months back clearly was) – Peak Energy recommends turfing the Rodent and his government out on their backsides and hurling rotten fruit at them.

They’ve done nothing (in fact negative things) about global warming, they’ve done nothing about our energy security (other than shamefully backing the American oil war in Iraq and destroying our traditional freedoms thanks to their fear mongering and draconian “anti terror” legislation) and they’ve done nothing to position the country to be successful at anything other than digging up dirt and selling it overseas – they’ve simply ridden on the coattails of Paul Keating and the China boom.

And they’re a bunch of pork barreling hypocrites.

So vote for a minor party first and put the coalition last in your preferences – especially in the Senate.

Hopefully the country will head off in a new, better direction in December.

NZealand glaciers retreat due to global warming say scientists

New Zealand’s largest glaciers are retreating fast in the face of global warming and could disappear altogether, scientists said Monday.

A report by the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) said the volume of ice in New Zealand’s Southern Alps had shrunk almost 11 percent in the past 30 years.

More than 90 percent of this loss was because the 12 largest glaciers in the mountain range were melting due to rising temperatures, NIWA said.
(19 November 2007)