Culture

Surprise! America And China Sign Climate Agreement, Leave Australia In The Dust

Well this is embarrassing, isn't it.

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Well, this whole G20 Summit is just shaping up like a dream for Tony Abbott and Co. Fresh from revelations that Australia has been the only nation fighting to keep climate change off the agenda, just today we saw the Labor Party walk away from negotiations over the Government’s plan to savagely cut the Renewable Energy Target, a move almost certainly designed specifically to embarrass Tony as all his important friends arrive.

And now this:

Headline courtesy of Mother Jones.

Headline courtesy of Mother Jones.

So, let’s see. Now we have the world’s two largest economies, two largest carbon polluters and two most important allies and trading partners of Australia signing off on a deal designed to ensure they both accelerate the rate at which they cut back on their carbon emissions.

For America this will mean a 26-28% reduction by 2025, while the Chinese – still being able to play the developing nation card – have set in stone the year 2030 as the point at which their emissions will peak and begin to reduce. However this is linked with China’s declaration that they’re also committing to have 20% of their power generation provided by renewables by 2030, around 800-1000 gigawatts of power, or roughly the same amount as the entire electricity consumption of the USA. Both parties hope that by taking such decisive action they’ll push the rest of the world to do the same at the climate change talks in Paris next year.

As you might expect, Bill Shorten had a statement out so fast I’m vaguely suspicious he must have been standing inside the room when the agreement was signed.

Shorten Climate

Quite.

Still no word as yet from Team Abbott, so in the meantime let’s just revisit some of their better quotes from the last month or so, shall we?

TONY ABBOTT: “Coal is good for humanity, coal is good for prosperity, coal is an essential part of our economic future, here in Australia, and right around the world. This is a sign of hope and confidence in the future of the coal industry – it’s a great industry… Coal is essential for the prosperity of the world.”

GREG HUNT: “I think any of us who are trying to predict what happens, you know, almost a century away in terms of energy use might be getting a little bit ahead of ourselves.”

Try telling that to Xi and Barack, Hunty boy.