June 27, 2013 | Ronda Jambe

At least Rudd didn’t use the c word

Unless my stunned and tired ears misheard, he didn’t mention climate change in his press conference last night. He had a unique opportunity to reinforce the message Obama sent out the day before. The US will undertake a massive investment and effort to at least adapt to the train wreck that experts now agree is coming our way.

That would have implied a greater degree of awareness and leadership than we have become used to in our federal politicians. Julia Gillard, in a speech that was more gracious,  transcendent and policy focused than one would have expected, did mention the emissions trading scheme.

But Rudd’s machinations probably haven’t left him time to read a recent report from the U.S. Center for Naval Analyses and the London-based Royal United Services Institute.  For those deniers who think these are left wing think tanks, I note that they are ‘two of the NATO alliance’s front-line strategy centers’.

The report, available at:


says it is misguided to focus on obtaining more oil, and that climate change is a huge threat to national security.  I would say it is greater than terrorism (connect the dots, they are related issues)

It recommends renewables and energy conservation.

In my book, this means redesigning cities and buildings, biofuels, smart grids, local food production, and development that isn’t linked to traditional measures of growth.

If the Gillard government offered climate change policies among the best in the world, as one of her advisors told me, then this and the urgency of finding solutions has not been shouted from the rooftops.

Is the media where the finger should be pointed? Are we so obsessed with trivia that we can’t recognise what is most important for us to deal with, or its urgency? This article about looking back on what will be our future this century, describes a civilisation that just couldn’t make the necessary changes:


As far as gender wars goes, I found it repugnant that Germaine Greer got airtime for making vulgar and insulting comments about the PM’s physical attributes that would be suicide for any male in the public sphere.

Maybe someone needs to get the owner of NewsCorp onside to get the climate change message out.  I hear he’s looking for a wife…now does this lipstick flatter me?

Posted by Ronda Jambe at 4:57 pm | Comments (3) |
Filed under: Uncategorized


  1. Climate change is real and needs to be dealt with, by those who are causing it. We are causing some of it, (1.4%) and exporting more of it. (4.8%)
    The coal we currently export, could be replaced by coal seam gas.
    Yes sure, there could be some problems with underground aquifers and salination. Not insurmountable!
    The gas produces at least 40% less Co2 emission than coal, and if it is consumed in ceramic fuel cells, produces virtually nil Co2 production.
    If coal burning, for say, power generation is accompanied by large scale companion algae production, all that Co2 emission, can eventually be mopped up!
    This is something we can do now, and has a significant additional eventual profit production upsides.
    Clean coal is still pie in the sky stuff, and those trials already conducted, show that geo-sequestration is prohibitively expensive!
    Then we have an element, so called green advocates, who block carbon free nuclear options, and or, new hydroelectric schemes. It is not nuclear conflagration that is threatening to destroy all life on planet earth, just carbon pollution caused climate change!
    They also say no to the dams we need to simply prevent the large scale run-off, that routinely and repeatedly destroys massive swathes of marine grass, and indeed all those that depend on it.
    [More water storage facilities would also mitigate against extremely destructive floods. And given water is wealth, contribute to both food production and future food security; and indeed, the additional economic opportunities implicit in the next boom, which will be a dining boom.]
    And let’s not forget, sea grass produces three times more oxygen than all the forests of the world; yet it is forests, or rather very old trees, this eco-fascist group seems to want to protect, with their selective blindness and deafness?
    Trees store carbon whether vertical of horizontal, and young vigorous growth absorbs much more of it the old geriatric trees.
    And indeed, makes a great case for very selective logging in old growth forests!
    Some indigenous communities have been selectively logging their old growth forests for millennia, with only beneficial outcomes for both the forest and all who depend on it!
    Some commentary suggests we need to leave carbon in the ground?
    Even so, we still continue to extract the most carbon intensive products, tar sands, shale oil, and the barely liquid bitumen the middle east exports to the rest of the world; all while locking away those, (sweet light crude, NG LPG lower carbon alternatives) that would allow us to almost immediately, reduce our transport component carbon production fourfold. Complete madness!?
    We could and should introduce rapid rail. Given the carbon production per ton of freight, is just a tiny fraction of that produced by the trucking industry.
    Moreover, rail transport is significantly less costly than road transport, and far less carbon intensive than air freight.
    The usual excuse for inaction in this area, is lack of money.
    Money that could be found in quite massive surplus, if we only had just one leader, with the testicular fortitude to reform our tax system, to completely eliminate quite massive avoidance.
    We’re told a very fast train service connecting Brisbane to Melbourne and many stops in between, would cost somewhere around 140 billions today. [And somewhere north of 500 billion, two decades down the line! So where is the financial case or imperative for delay!]
    Well, I believe, we could raise 140 billions of additional nation building revenue, inside two short years, just by replacing the current convoluted complexity, with a single stand alone expenditure tax!
    Set at just 4.8%, this single stand alone unavoidable tax, would raise around 100 billion more per annum, than the entire raft of quite massively manipulated and routinely avoided, tax collection complexity, we currently rely on.
    And when you understand that compliance-oops, avoidance costs, are currently ripping as much from as 7% the bottom line!
    Changing over to a much simpler and entirely unavoidable system, would actually and effectively improve the averaged bottom line. Or that none of that which is proposed here, would harm the economy, rather just the opposite!
    That being so, you’d have to wonder if any of the protagonists and detractors, have anything still operational in their upper stories?
    And to all the young people, who see their world being destroyed by inaction!?
    Let me conclude by saying, don’t just stand there complaining about the current status quo, or lack of effective action on too many fronts!
    Do something! Vote!
    Alan B. Goulding

    Comment by Alan B. Goulding — June 28, 2013 @ 12:12 pm

  2. Surprised to hear you so optimistic about coal seam gas, given the equally urgent need to protect our aquifers and food growing areas. The uglification and destruction of the surface landscape is just a signal of the greater damage this technology does, and all the info I get is that it is short term at best, a dreadful tradeful for sticking our heads in the sand for another few years.

    And who do we vote for, Alan? The dysfunctional ALP or the Greens that won’t have enough influence to shift the ship of state? I am leaning towards local solutions, community action and resilience, and eventually the policy makers will wake up to the urgency of the situation.

    Not to say gov doesn’t do some good things (I withhold my assessment of Gonski and the NDIS, as there is often a devil in the detail).

    Comment by ronda jambe — June 29, 2013 @ 9:09 am

  3. Ronda, a record and growing foreign debt of over 2 trillion, leaves us with little choice, but to export what we can.
    Yes coal seam gas has its share of problems, mostly as the possible salination of aquifers.
    However, this gas can be also used in ceramic cells, which then repay, with a virtually doubled energy coefficient, (72%) and mostly water vapour as the exhaust.
    Fortunately, this coal seam salt water can be used to irrigate. Ditto sea water.
    Ag-pipes buried and wrapped in membrane, can have this water pumped through them.
    Many crops that have a greater pulling power than pumps, can use this ultra-reliable water, for food/fodder production.
    Moreover, many farmers are raking six figure incomes, from this often fairly modest use of some of their land!
    And better than going slowly broke and facing ruination, as the droughts and the money lenders all take their toll! [Farmers were suiciding at the rate of four a week?]
    A better solution I believe, would be to mine the Great Barrier reef for its MUCH LOWER CARBON producing alternatives!
    If we continue to use the fully imported products, we will create four times as more carbon than we would create, just by using locally available products. [Australian sweet light crude, NG and LPG.]
    Half the reef is already gone and the status quo is more than likely to kill off the rest.
    Tourists are staying away in droves, resorts are going bankrupt; and, even fewer tourists are likely to spend their thousands, to look at the dead remains.
    Simply put, if Co2 is killing our reef, and it is?
    Then surely selecting locally available and copious fuel types that produce four times less of the stuff, is just plain old fashioned pragmatism.
    Moreover, given there is (a) large shallow reserve(s).
    We can and should explore, exploit and export to the rest of the world, for the very same reasons, we ourselves prefer it over, tar sands and shale oil. Even if that means reinstituting the government owned oil and gas corporation!
    Tar sands and shale oil produce four times or more carbon, when you include the production and refining phases! Ditto the double refined products we currently import, as 85% of our total transport and food production fuels!
    Australian sweet light crude traditionally leaves the ground as a virtually ready to use, virtually sulphur free, superior diesel! Needing only a little insitu chill filtering to make it ready for the harvester, truck, train or mining machine.
    And NG leaves the well head at subzero temperatures, thereby providing the very chill factor needed, without any further carbon creating energy input.
    In the early days of oil exploration, it was shallow wells that were discovered, mostly as a consequence of the mystery oil slicks they produced.
    The sheer number of very wide ranging, mystery oil slicks the reef has produced over my lifetime, I believe, indicates a quite massive and easily recovered resource(s)?
    Yes, we should and must switch to endlessly sustainable alternatives!
    But we must have something else in the interim!
    We will get there far sooner, if we but can diminish the power and influence of the fossil fuel industry, which currently rakes in over four trillions per; and indeed, has many nation states under its thumb?
    Four trillion plus per annum, is an enormous amount of power and influence, and the principle reason, I believe, we still import dirty Middle Eastern sulphur laden sludge?
    As a former energy minister once said, “our own oils are just too light for the refining industry, and we need some heavy oil, to make industrial lube and or bitumen”. Quote unquote.
    We could make all we need of the latter, (50,000 barrels per) simply by recycling all our waste tyres.
    As for who to vote for?
    I plan to vote for Katter in the lower house, and Palmer in the senate, this time!
    I believe those two gentlemen are both pragmatic enough to see we retain the current NBN, and give ourselves permission to access and use our own resources?
    Also, it’s my way of saying to the major party’s, and their lap dogs, that have between them, done some much harm to the country and the bush; a pox on both your houses.
    Cheers, Alan B. Goulding.

    Comment by Alan B. Goulding — June 29, 2013 @ 1:09 pm

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