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It should surprise no one that the Coalition government is getting right down to business in facilitating new business activity and development because unlike Labor and the loopy Greens they are not beholden to rent seeking fringe groups.
Environment Minister Greg Hunt has taken decisions on 125 projects in the Coalition’s first three months in office, including approving 29 major projects, which the government estimates are worth $400bn. The decisions – the latest of which was Clive Palmer’s giant Waratah Coal/China First coalmine and railway line to the Abbot Point coal port – could spark a new wave of development.
Mr Hunt also has approved the $1.4bn Abbot Point coal terminal expansion, which paves the way for the creation of the world’s biggest coal export port.
But the approvals – particularly coalmine approvals in the Galilee Basin and the expansion of the Abbot Point coal port – have sparked allegations of “development at any cost” from the Greens and environment groups.
Queensland Greens senator Larissa Waters has described the approval as a “terrible Christmas present for the planet” and has raised concerns about its impact on underground water aquifers as well as its impact on combating climate change.
The Abbot Point expansion has been attacked as “criminal” by environmental groups that are calling for the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority to use its powers to protect the World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef.
Mr Hunt said the government was sticking to high environmental standards.
He also has fast-tracked another 46 projects to avoid delays, after inheriting 371 unassessed projects from the previous Labor government, with 22 dating back to 2008. “We have made real steps in unblocking the pipeline while also putting in place some of the strictest environmental conditions in Australian history,” Mr Hunt told The Australian.
“It’s possible to have high environmental standards and genuine decision-making. The previous government was unable to say yes and unable to say no.”
Mr Hunt also has determined that a further 30 projects require no further assessment and 16 require no further assessment as long as certain requirements are met. Another 50 projects have been “assessed and progressed” under the water trigger.
Any short-term boost to mining investment would provide a much-needed buffer to the economy and give more time to the non-mining sectors on the east coast to fill the growth gap.
While I personally have some concerns about the dumping of dredge spoil from Abbott point with in the Great barrier reef zone I likewise find it ludicrous that the Green religion is being invoked as the major objection to opening up new coal mines. Isn’t it ironic that the party that would throw open our borders to all and sundry, especially when they sling us the “I’m oppressed ” line, object to any increase in our economic activity to generate the wealth that the endless stream of mendicants seek a part of? When will they realise that you can’t have more people in this country if we lack the economy to support them? Greg Hunt is right to suggest that the most important quality that and efficient government must have is decisiveness for its far better to have a prompt decion, be it good bad or indifferent, than to have the lily-livered procrastination that was so evident under Rudd/Gillard/Rudd.
- Dredge and dump projects approved (theage.com.au)
- Federal Government approves controversial Great Barrier Reef developments (abc.net.au)
- Federal Minister approves Qld coal and gas expansion amid new rules to protect Barrier Reef (abc.net.au)
- Palmer coalmine gets green light (smh.com.au)
- Palmer’s Waratah Coal mine gets green light (abc.net.au)
- Great Barrier Reef Gets A Six-Week Reprieve From Big Coal (planetsave.com)
- The industrialisation of the Great Barrier Reef (abc.net.au)
- Australia approves $5.7 billion coal project despite criticism (rawstory.com)
According to media reports the abolition of the Climate commission will save the long suffering people about half a million bucks a year, almost chump change in the greater scheme of things but how it has upset the AGW luvvies, with many of them getting upset that the government should do precisely what they promised on the campaign trail would be right up there with getting new stationary by abolishing this useless quango. Some one should explain to the luvvies that if the Australian people want to find out about the subject they can do the same as everyone else and just use the internet. Because its always been the case that the likes of Flannery et al have NEVER produced a single instance of unique research all that they have ever done is to rehash the many papers and pseudo-scientific claims of impending doom as if they are some sort of holy writ. The fact that Flannery now claims that he and his fellow Profits of the Green religion are now going to carry on their “work” while begging for public support should make for an amusing aside to discussions of the topic. I just can’t help wondering if the AGW luvvies will dig deep enough to make up for Flannery’s now absent 180 grand a year stipend or if the cold hard reality of them having to spend their own money (rather than that of the taxpayer) is in action.
While we are on the subject of the internet who has not noticed that Malcolm Turnbull has got the NBN board to all fall on their swords? It both delights me to see the nincompoops who have done such a crappy job on Labor’s signature high-tech infrastructure project fired and to see that we now have a the prospect of the very necessary upgrading of our internet services in the hands of a minister who understands how to run something properly and that we may just have in prospect a change in the debate from the flights of of fantasy about what a warp drive will do on the electric super highway to what has to be done to properly deliver on the promise.
- Tim Flannery to relaunch scrapped Climate Commission as community-funded body (abc.net.au)
- Backers breathe life into axed climate body (theage.com.au)
- Tim Flannery sacked as Climate Commission is disbanded (sbs.com.au)
- New climate think tank backed (smh.com.au)
- Climateer Tim Flannery sacked in Oz (wattsupwiththat.com)
- Taking away the Climate Change gravy train (iainhall.wordpress.com)
- Axed Climate Commission to be resurrected as Climate Council (theguardian.com)
- Malcolm Turnbull asks NBN Co board to resign after cost blowouts and delays (abc.net.au)
Advocates here insist that the Gillard scheme will be a valuable tool in the fight against the scourge of Anthropogenic Global Warming I have never been convinced that it will do anything that its advocates claim and I have repeatedly suggested that its little more than a scam. This post has but one purpose and that is to point out the folly of “emission trading schemes” and to show just how easily they become little more than a shambolic fraud. One only has top look to the European scheme to see what we can expect from the one created by the Gillard government:
Of course my quote above does not tell the whole story but it is a good example of how these schemes rely upon what can only be described as “clever accounting” to create the pretence of efficacy. To be honest I can see how such an indirect method to change industrial behaviour can ever truly work because it is all based upon the “bigger idiot principal”* and just as that sees the collapse of ponzi schemes it is seeing the collapse of the European emissions trading scheme as well:
Its a far from pretty picture in Europe and the only light in the antipodean climate darkness is that the Coalition have promised to repeal the idiotic regime created to placate the loopy Greens by a desperate Julia Gillard. Now if only the incoming Abbott government would have the courage to also ditch the majority of their own pointless scheme the country would be truly free of the AGW madness .
*the bigger idiot principle is essential in all kinds of derivative trading schemes it is the underlying belief that any commodity can be sold at a profit if only enough people can be convinced to buy into the scheme. It is fine until the supply of idiots runs out.
- Politicians reject call for early shift to emissions trading (abc.net.au)
- EU urged to revive flagging emissions trading scheme (guardian.co.uk)
- Opposition rules out emissions scheme (news.com.au)
- The EU Emissions Trading Scheme under WTO Rules (worldtradelaw.typepad.com)
- What Gillard is up against (theaimn.com)
- Without dignity all is lost for Labor (iainhall.wordpress.com)
- How does Julia sleep? (spectator.co.uk)
- Carbon fat cats are killing the emissions trading mouse | Damian Carrington (guardian.co.uk)