As the Federal Government’s climate change ‘carbon pollution’ legislation gets debated in Parliament, we’ve decided to run the ultimate climate change reference post. You’ve heard from Tony Abbott, and from Minister Jenny Macklin. Now, hear the view from The Climate Institute, an independent research body. Giulia Baggio writes:
Climate Change Mythbusters
1. Myth: Taking action on climate change will make my household bills go through the roof.
Fact: The pollution tax proposed by the Government is not a tax on households. It’s a tax on pollution caused by big industrial polluters. You will not see it appearing on your tax return, electricity bill or your shopping bill.
Any costs passed through to households are expected to be small – around $9.90 a week. Most households will receive financial support to cover all or part of this.
2. Myth: Australia does not create much pollution
Fact: Australians create the most pollution, per person, in the developed world – mainly because we burn heavy-polluting coal to create most of our electricity. Our economy compared with other major economies is the 15th biggest polluter in the world.
3. Myth: Cutting Australia’s pollution will not have any effect on global pollution levels
Fact: Australia’s pollution levels might look small compared with China or the US, but in fact they are similar in size to the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Spain, South Korea and a range of other mid-sized countries. Acting together, our countries can cut up to a third of global pollution – and that’s the point: we all have to act together to make it effective.
As a big polluter, and the one of the world’s largest coal exporters, other countries take note of Australia’s actions.
4. Myth: Other countries are not doing anything about climate change
Fact: All major economies are acting on climate change. More than 100 have renewable energy policies and many are developing clean energy industries worth billions of dollars. More than 30 have emissions trading schemes including all of Europe, the UK, New Zealand, a number of US states and, by 2015, a pilot scheme in China too. The danger for Australia is falling behind the rest of the world.