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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Australia No. 1 Polluter in the World

Captain kRudd excitedly took the accolades for agreeing to sign the Kyoto Protocol and while the lyrics of his song ‘its better die on your feet than live on your knees’ played in the background, the environmental stalwart Peter Garrett grinned like the fool he takes the Australian public for.


We were No 1 in Rugby Union, Rugby League and Cricket; however its unlikely most Australians want to be No 1 as the biggest polluters in the world, but thanks to corporate government, that’s where we are and all the bullshit spin the government puts of clean coal and geo-sequestration and throws billions of $ on insulation etc, this is but a drop in the bucket as to the hundreds of billions of $ successive governments have handed to coal, gas and oil companies; aka ‘the green mafia’.


America, once the pin-up boy of per capita worst carbon dioxide polluters in the world had China running a close second, but in a Steven Bradbury, we Australians have taken the world’s worst highest accolade.


As the Australian government is not refuting this report complied by a British company (Maplecroft) and based U.S. Energy Department data, it must be so.


The report calculated that Australia’s per capita output of carbon dioxide is about 18.66 metric tons a year which is four percent higher than the United States.


That means that yearly, we Australians pump 392,000,000 million tonnes of greenhouse gasses into our skies every year; while China remains the world’s biggest overall greenhouse gas polluter (with a population of some 1.2 billion people) followed closely by the United States (with just over 300 million people), being No 1 with a population of just over 21 million people, we have to ask ourselves, is this right ?


Of course global warming sceptics claim that burning all the coal, gas and oil has nothing to do with global warming, and Australian politicians claim ‘good management’ makes Australia strong, but why don’t we have energy efficient housing as mandatory, rather than retro-fitting houses; why do companies that manufacture highly polluting building materials continue to pollute and not have to upgrade ?


In Australia, we receive from the Sun over 100,000 times the energy we use daily, yet we hold the title as the worst per capita emitter of carbon dioxide, because rather than solar power, we have a heavy reliance on coal energy, which puts the money into a few corporations rather than spreading the load. The claim is about 80 % percent of the country’s electricity is generated by coal-fired power stations, but this doesn’t mean the rest is solar or wind power; much it comes from hydro electricity and even burning off native forests to generate energy and mockingly, these companies market that energy as ‘green’ and ‘renewable’ but if it were renewable, they would be burning forest plantations rather than old growth forests.


Canberra has committed to cutting greenhouse gas pollution by up to 25 percent by 2020 compared to 2000 levels, but has no real or workable plans to achieve this; political grandstanding and spin-doctoring are all any of the parties are good at.


I’m currently researching and writing a story about how poor planning by the federal government has resulted in the Insulation Industry Pulls Wool Over Our Eyes.


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