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Scott Morrison can’t look Australians in the eye

There are multitudinous more deserving reasons why Scott Morrison might not want to look Australians in the eye than the oft-repeated talking point that he can’t predict what jobs will be around and what electricity will cost in three decades time.

“I don’t sign up to anything when I can’t look Australians in the eye and tell them what it costs,” he said of a target of zero net emissions by 2050.  “None of that information is before me that would enable me to give any such commitment.”

And yet, when he got rightly hammered for his inadequate preparation for, and reaction to, the bushfire crisis, in trying to regain some semblance of leadership, ScottyFromMarketing had no such qualms.

“Today’s cabinet was one of great resolve; it was one where we stood together and said, ‘whatever it takes, whatever it costs, we will ensure the resilience and future of this country’, and we will do it by investing in the work that needs to be done,” Morrison said.  “The surplus is of no focus for me, what matters to me is the human cost and meeting whatever costs we need to meet.”

Considering the almost daily revelations about how the government hands out money – grants in marginal seats, contracts without tender, jobs for fellow travellers, subsidies for fossil fuels – it is obvious that Scotty is prepared to spend whatever it takes to protect his job.

Protecting the planet?  Not so much.

Scotty tries to tell us that we are meeting and beating our targets though I haven’t heard the “in a canter” talking point lately.  That’s probably because everyone knows it is bullshit.

Climate Action Tracker

The “Climate Solutions Package” announced in February 2019 confirms that the Australian government is not intending to implement any serious climate policy efforts. Instead, it wants to meet its targets by relying on carry over units from the Kyoto Protocol, which would significantly lower the actual emission reductions needed. The National Hydrogen Strategy released in November 2019 risks becoming a brown hydrogen strategy in favour of propping up coal and carbon capture and storage technology, rather than focusing on renewable energy and green hydrogen.

The government also wants to continue relying on the inadequate policy instrument, the Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF) now re-named the “Climate Solutions Fund” which is failing to contribute to any significant emissions reductions. Recent ERF auctions have seen fewer emissions abatements contracted, projects have been dropped from the fund for failing to meet abatements, there are issues of additionality, and the fund is dominated by land use sector abatements with a high risk of reversal, for example through bushfires.

The government continues to consider underwriting new coal fired power generation and extending the lifetime of old coal plants – completely inconsistent with the need to phase out coal globally by 2040 and in OECD countries by 2030. If all other countries were to follow Australia’s “Highly Insufficient” current policy trajectory, warming could reach over 3°C and up to 4°C.

In order to give Tim Wilson something to count off on his fingers when he is interviewed, we have a new slogan – ‘technology not taxes’.

‘Technology’ is held up like some shiny new bauble to bedazzle us.  It will be our saviour repeats everyone issued with the latest talking points.

Except they are ignoring the technology that could save us whilst promoting things that won’t.

When Elon Musk said he could build the biggest lithium battery in the world in SA in 100 days, Mike Cannon-Brookes immediately challenged him to deliver, and he did.

Scott Morrison’s reaction?  His best thing – mockery.

“I mean, honestly, by all means have the world’s biggest battery, have the world’s biggest banana, have the world’s biggest prawn like we have on the roadside around the country, but that is not solving the problem.”

In the lead up to the 2019 election, Labor set a national electric vehicles target of 50% new car sales by 2030, and 50% for the government fleet by 2025, as well as allowing business to deduct a 20% depreciation for private fleet EVs valued at more than $20,000.

Scott Morrison’s reaction? Mockery.

“Bill Shorten wants to end the weekend when it comes to his policy on electric vehicles where you’ve got Australians who love being out there in their four-wheel drives.”

The legions of fossil fuel lobbyists the government have hired to advise them are great on attack talking points but really crap at keeping up to date with what is actually going on in the world.

When Scotty says “None of that information is before me”, one would have to ask why not because it’s all out there.

As reported by Renew Economy:

In a landmark report last year titled the Australian National Outlook, the CSIRO – in conjunction with the NAB and former Treasury head Ken Henry – said 100 per cent renewables could be reached by 2050 and deliver a substantially lower cost of energy than we have now, and the whole economy could reach net zero emissions by 2050 and deliver a stronger economy and more jobs at the same time.

And the country’s Australian Energy Market Operator, whose prime responsibility is to manage the electricity grid and keep the lights on, has mapped out a blueprint to reach at least 90 per cent renewables in two decades.

Again, this is the cheapest option, as the combined research of the CSIRO and AEMO, with the input of dozens of energy experts and research groups, shows clearly that decarbonising through renewables is the quickest and cheapest path to cutting emissions.

More than $500 million has already been spent on CCS without saving a single tonne of emissions, or with any credible plan to do so, and another $500 million is going to a hydrogen pilot to sequester just three, yes, just three, tonnes of emissions from a brown coal generator.

Scott Morrison’s fear of setting a zero emissions target has nothing to do with jobs or cost or a lack of information and everything to do with trying to deflect any action away from the solutions we could already be implementing.

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32 comments

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  1. RomeoCharlie29

    Of course he doesn’t know anything. The job of a competent advisor is to shield him from anything unwelcome and, frankly, there isn’t much news that would be welcome to Scottyfrommarketting these days. Unemployment worsens, yet another retailer succumbs to the perilous economic environment this lacklustre government provides, every second day another grubby funding rort is exposed while at the same time doubts emerge around the massive expenditures planned for our Defence White Elephants. The supposed good news for the NT of the Tindal expansion turns out to be so bigger American bombers can land and the people-killing drones can be accommodated. I mean he can’t even please rural women having first alienated the CWA, then giving them some money to distribute to the needy without asking them first. Truly, everything he touches turns to shit.

    Today communities around Australia held rallies protesting inaction on climate change and, in Darwin protesting the NT Government’s insane decision to approve fracking. Local media did not see fit to report it despite a significant turnout and nothing made my ABC TV about action anywhere else. I am hoping the ABC hasn’t decided to pull the plug on coverage of such rallies. But then the new covid 19 cases and Chinese New Year celebrations were the big stories.

  2. Phil Pryor

    Who would wish to look an unwiped anus in the “eye”. for the Head Moron is as revolting a view as a crook orifice of any farmyard animal. A chronic, stupid, serial liar, this political pox is not representative of us, the real people.., he is a plague, a putridity, a pestilence, a distillation of all the filth and stupidity the country party dickhead types have brought in over time, all to ruin this lovely but delicate country. Worse than a fox, rabbit, cane toad, prickly pear, weeds, worms, erosions, degradations, Morrison is terminal turdery.

  3. Aortic

    Good one again Kaye. Well I remember that grinning cabal of Abbott, Pyne, Hunt et al rejoicing in the repeal of a perfectly effective carbon impost. And what was the answer, the wonderful Direct Action Plan, which to my recall was never fully explained, probably for obvious reasons, and still remains a mystery. Just looked up an old article that said Abbott was committed to reducing emissions by 5% by 2020. Wow what a guy huh? Just also watched ABC with Eric Campbell and Germany’s commitment to eliminate all coal mines by 2030, without any loss of jobs. There is local resistance from the brown coal mines still in existence, but the government both local and federal seem to be in synch. The protestors are mainly young as they have the most at stake it we continue to make the planet unliveable for them. And Morrison keeps bleating about electricity prices and the precious economy, it is a fact that renewables can and will provide as many if not more jobs than fossil fuel outlets but I guess as long as Gina, Clive and MSM call the shots this puerile excuse for a government will continue to the detriment of us all.

  4. Matters Not

    Re:

    probably because everyone knows it is bullshit

    While one could quibble with the ‘everyone’ bit, perhaps going down the ‘truth’ track is missing the essence of what works in today’s political world. No political leader lies more than Donald Trump, the President of the United States, and a significant percentage of that electorate don’t seem to care – in the sense that they will vote for him anyway. Seems the same way with Boris from Britain. And it works elsewhere as well (without going into details because that’s not the point to be made).

    While some are attracted to ‘truth-telling’, being ‘rational’, seekers of ‘evidence’ and all that, it’s becoming increasingly obvious that more and more voters are motivated by being told what they want to hear. It matters not that it’s ‘irrational’, ‘untrue’, ‘illogical’, ‘groundless’ or complete ‘bullshit’ – what matters most is that it’s what voters wants to hear. What voters want to believe in. That’s what wins elections. And Scott, Donald, Boris et al know that.

  5. Kaye Lee

    MN,

    I find the older I get, the less time I have for people who ignore evidence. I can’t afford their ignorance.

  6. Matters Not

    KL, the older I get the more I realize that (as a starting point) I have to deal with the world as it is and not as I want it to be. Thus the is must always comes before the ought.

    (Think there’s a joke there about being lost in Ireland – but I won’t go there.)

  7. Kaye Lee

    I look at what is, and I will keep expecting better – a better that we are quite capable of if people are told the truth rather than the meaningless marketing.

    We have solutions and people ready to invest in them. Politicians are largely an impediment.

  8. Matters Not

    So – it’s just a matter of people being told the truth? And ‘marketing’ doesn’t work?

    Not in my is world.

    And agree that politicians are impediments – so what structural mechanism is on the table to remove that impediment? Letter writing? Flag waving?

  9. RosemaryJ36

    One of the pithy sounding phrases I remember from my youth is “Constant dripping wears away a stone”.
    Another is “Perseverance pays”.
    And, of course, “If at first you don’t succeed . . . “.
    Finally “Truth will out!”
    Life is not worth living without optimism.

  10. Pingback: Scott Morrison can’t look Australians in the eye #newsoz.org #auspol - News Oz

  11. johno

    Scottyatacanterbutactuallydonothingmorrison needs to LIFT his game pronto. There is so much going on around the the world in relation to this problem, yet Scotty kowtows to his overlords and gives us obfuscation. Thanks for nothing Scotty.

    Last November I visited the Leilac zero carbon cement project Belgium – an exciting project given that cement is responsible for 7% of global emissions, more than twice as much as aviation. The new process captures most of the carbon dioxide that’s ordinarily released to the atmosphere during cement manufacture. The technology, which can be powered by renewable energy, was developed in Bacchus Marsh, Victoria and was lured to Europe on the back of a €12 million grant and a price on carbon.

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/feb/21/the-governments-sudden-passion-for-climate-technology-is-newfound-and-insincere

  12. Cara Clark

    I would like to know WHY? Why are the electorate so selfish and stupid that they apparently don’t think, don’t read and don’t care, such that they would even consider voting for the perfidious Scummo and his rabble?

  13. Michael

    Technology won’t save us…it will require more and more extraction, and more and more industrialization, and when each new technological problem is encountered & “solved” with more technology, wash, rinse, repeat. “Business as usual” is not an option any more, but we are being, literally, forced to go with it. We are immersed in end-stage capitalism’s death throes at gunpoint, here in the states as well as down there.

    Radical Conservation is a way to cripple the system that is killing us. But of course that doesn’t play to the masses or business. Business wants business as usual (including war), and the majority of the population, well propagandized, view conservation as a threat to the “modern” way of life, as practiced since the industrial revolution, which is an existential threat to the planet.

    What would life be like without heart attack special hamburgers, unlimited air travel, Big Gulp carbonated sugar water, 4WD vehicles tearing up the countryside, and mindless digital entertainment dens? Living locally and actually TALKING to people? Nah…SO Middle Ages.

  14. johno

    Middle ages WITHOUT the feudal system please.

  15. Harry Lime

    The lying happy clapper will NOT do anything to interfere with his yearned for”Rapture”.Bring it on ,I say.

  16. Kronomex

    If it doesn’t come with scads of brown envelopes stuffed full of mana (like what Gina, Twiggy, and others do for the LNP) then it doesn’t exist. Anything to do with science comes from Chief Scientists Kelly and Bolt. And standing over all is the non-existent hairy faced magic sky fairy who just adores Hugepong…oops, Hillsong and Scotty from Marketing above all else.

    Mockery is all that Scummo has to use because his adman brain can’t think past bad putdowns and three (sometimes, gasp, even four) word slogans let alone create anything that can actually benefit us. Jealousy, incompetence, rat cunning, and arrogance is all his small brain can run on.

  17. Kronomex

    Scotty from Marketing’s hands in pockets slinking away behaviour in the photo doesn’t surprise me in the least, but the creepiest thing in the photo is that creepy object in the hat.

  18. Kaye Lee

    Why doesn’t anyone ever ask Scotty how much electricity prices will be in 2030?

    Why don’t they ask him how his electric vehicles strategy will reduce emissions by the claimed 10 million tonnes by 2030, how much it will cost, and what it will mean for the jobs of people who work on internal combustion engines?

    “Battery of the Nation is expected to reduce emissions by 25 million tonnes by 2030.”

    How much will it cost and what will it mean for the jobs of mainland workers involved in thermal energy production? What is the cost/benefit compared to the alternatives?

    Why does the government always get to avoid scrutiny?

  19. Kronomex

    Those are all good questions Kaye and that’s why Scotty from Marketing and Crony Co. Inc. pay millions of tax payers dollars to “consultants” every year to help them avoid answering such questions because that would show them up to being a party of nothing except graft and corruption.

  20. Geoff Andrews

    What I find most frustrating about Labor is its inability to followup on the obvious illogical arguments by the gummermint. Fer instance, you remind us of Morrison’s mockery of batteries while, at the same time, he’s proposing the elusive Snowy 2.0: just another big battery. The opposition to climate science by the cabal of scrotum squeezers within easy arm’s length of Morrison, shows an ignorance of the principles of insurance: you pay a premium (renewables) against the possibility of a disaster (in their case, that climate change is real).

  21. Kaye Lee

    In a perverse kind of way, the government is being saved from scrutiny by their ongoing scandals. That is all they ever get asked about yet they, and we, know there will be no consequences for any of that – perhaps a temporary demotion with some extra committee chair or special envoy work to top up the salary before the inevitable return to the ministry. Or a cushy high-paying job on some government body board.

    In the mean time, no-one ever asks them about their policies or lack thereof. They refuse to release reports. They change portfolios regularly so they can say it’s no longer my responsibility or I wasn’t the minister at the time. Paperwork gets lost or never existed or is under the veil of secrecy “cabinet considerations”.

    The moving of the climate department to the Department of Industry is causing all sorts of problems in accessing information. The September Quarter emissions reduction report is supposed to be released by the end of February but when I rang them, they are too busy moving office to be able to tell me when or where it will now be published.

    The only thing our government is good at is diversion and deflection – The Ministry of Dead Cats.

  22. New England Cocky

    Now KL, stop asking sensible questions! You are making a farce of the unquestioning MSM!! And as for “politicians being an impediment”, why I thought that was what the Nazianal$ politicians were paid to do so that Australia returned to the glory days of early 19th century adventure colonialism …..

    @johno: An interesting example of Aussie ingenuity sadly ignored at home by 18th century thinking politicians and start-up entrepreneur financiers. Reminds me of the British innovation of tank blitzkrieg warfare that was ignored by the “very intelligent” British High Command and used with devastating effect by the Nazi war machine against Poland in 1939.

  23. David Evans

    I remember another lying little rodent running around the country bleating about the “technology” of Carbon Capture that was goung to save the planet…..That was about 20 years ago. Nothing has changed within lnp circles, the same bluff bluster and bullshit spews forth about how good they are and how bad Labor is, but they are no further advanced now than when hill. minchin campbell and howard were ining and outing, toing and froing, flipping and flopping, despite the almost weekly photo op announcements of “How Great We Are”. It’s just not funny anymore, they are just a mob of puppets pandering to murdochs molls and the coal industry. They are not working for the well being of this and/ or future generations. Never been so ashamed and disillusioned with any p.m. or “government” as I am with this rabble.

  24. Kaye Lee

    “While the federal government continues to repeatedly state that Australia is on track to meet its 2030 target “in a canter”, the Climate Action Tracker is not aware of any scientific basis, published by any analyst or government agency, that would support this. The OECD has warned the Australian Government that it will not achieve its target without intensified mitigation efforts. It describes current climate policy as a “piecemeal approach”.

    Australia’s Paris Agreement target is 26-28% reduction below 2005 levels by 2030 (including LULUCF). With current policies total emissions including LULUCF are projected to be about 7% below 2005 levels by 2030, rising from 15% below in 2013 the last full year before the present government repealed the carbon pricing system. After factoring out the highly uncertain LULUCF sector to focus on energy and industry emissions Australia’s Paris Agreement target translates to a 14-16% decrease from 2005 levels by 2030. Under current policies, Australian emissions are headed for an increase of 8% above 2005 levels by 2030 (excluding LULUCF), and if rated would be “highly insufficient”.”

    https://climateactiontracker.org/countries/australia/

    The above is a good link to check on various different countries’ progress and future projections.

  25. whatever

    “Billionaire mining magnate Mr Palmer donated $83.6 million to the United Australia Party in 2018-2019 through his company Mineralogy, $103,499 through his company Palmer Coolum Resort and his wife Anna donated $330,000, Australian Electoral Commission disclosures revealed in February.”

    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/democracy-shouldn-t-be-for-sale-albanese-wants-caps-on-political-donations-20200223-p543fr.html

    A lot of money spent, and they didn’t get anyone elected.

  26. Kaye Lee

    Budget May 2016

    Treasurer Scott Morrison

    “The Government will achieve efficiencies of $27.4 million over two years from 2015‑16 from the Carbon Capture and Storage Flagships Programme and the National Low Emissions Coal Initiative.

    The savings from this measure will be redirected by the Government to repair the Budget and fund policy priorities.”

    Vibble vobble vibble vobble jelly on a plate? Yesterday’s saving is tomorrow’s priority in the world of ScottyFromMarketing.

  27. Peter F

    @whatever…..”A lot of money spent, and THEY didn’t get anyone elected.” They got those who represent THEIR needs elected, and THEY do not have to attend Parliament. Don’t worry, the voters on QLD didn’t see that either/

  28. Kerri

    Mc Cormack claims he looks country folks in the eye and yet I can’t help but feel those looking back at him will see the land behind him?

  29. Patagonian

    J.P. Morgan, the world’s largest financier of fossil fuels has warned its clients that the climate crisis THREATENS THE SURVIVAL OF HUMANITY AND THAT THE PLANET IS ON AN UNSUSTAINABLE TRAJECTORY, according to a document leaked to an Extinction Rebellion leader.

    J. P. Morgan are not some ‘latte-sipping greenie’ outfit. They have provided $75bn in financial services to the companies most aggressively expanding in sectors such as fracking and Arctic oil and gas exploration since the Paris agreement.

    The research by JP Morgan economists David Mackie and Jessica Murray says the climate crisis will impact the world economy, human health, water stress, migration and the survival of other species on Earth.

    “Although precise predictions are not possible, it is clear that the Earth is on an unsustainable trajectory. Something will have to change at some point if the human race is going to survive.”

    The fossil fuel companies can’t claim that they didn’t know, or weren’t warned, or that the science is still not in. So anything they tell us to the contrary is lying.

    Unlike the conspiracies to hide the effects of asbestos or to downplay the damage of smoking, which the public only found out about decades later, the internet for all its failings also allows us to access information in real time. And even inside their own organisations there are those with enough of a conscience to take the significant risk associated with leaking this information.

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2020/feb/21/jp-morgan-economists-warn-climate-crisis-threat-human-race?fbclid=IwAR065RpLpONLr85scwLaeXQHRXnOAbPdqRlWIwUEjRAlbGENMKYZNasEc4c

  30. New Engand Cocky

    @whatever: The $83.6 MILLION “political donation” was more of a down payment on the Galilee Basin COAL mining project going ahead for the Palmer corporations and naturally Barnyard Joke’s favourite Auntie Gina ofHancock Mining fame/notoriety.

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