Friday, 1 July 2016

Turnbull, "Terrible lies" and climate change

I think that some politicians tell terrible lies
(Malcolm Turnbull, 30 June 2016)

Climate change is the biggest threat to the health and wellbeing of Australians and people worldwide. Unchecked climate change has the capacity to destroy the lives, homes and livelihood of millions of people, as well as other species. Australians want action on climate change.

Malcolm Turnbull has made approximately 110 speeches and verbal statements in this election campaign. It's an impressive total, but what has he said about climate change? Practically nothing.

In all those thousands of words, he has made only four brief statements about climate change. 

About eight interviewers have also asked him questions about climate change, though only one, Amanda Keller, really tried to pin him down.

Mr Turnbull says he is committed to action on climate change, but  insists that Australia's current actions and targets are adequate - or even outstanding - even though climate experts have clearly said they are inadequate. 

Mr Turnbull claims credit for initiatives funded by the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) although the LNP government tried to get rid of the CEFC, and was only prevented by Labor, Greens, Independents and minor parties in the Senate - the same people Mr Turnbull claims are a threat to good government.

Labor and the Greens both call for much higher targets for emissions reduction. Mr Turnbull acknowledges that higher targets are likely to be necessary following the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change - yet at the same time he scare-mongers about higher targets. On several occasions he insisted they would lead to higher electricity prices, in an obvious attempt to raise community fears.

Mr Turnbull said on 30th June 2016 "I think that some politicians tell terrible lies". Yet I have to ask, what is the difference between lying and pretending? If you say that you care about climate change, while pretending that clearly inadequate measures will make a difference, taking credit for measures like the CEFC that your opponents introduced, and scare mongering about meaningful targets, is that any different than "terrible lies"?


Australians' views on climate change
Australians' attitudes to climate change
100+ speeches and verbal statements by Malcolm Turnbull *
Expert views on climate change targets

*Update 14 Feb 2017 - after I posted this, the speeches and transcripts seemed to be removed from Mr Turnbull's website, so I started putting my notes here for the record. I didn't complete that at the time, and have come back to do so recently due to interest in the issue. The transcripts and speeches appear to be back on the website again, but I am not sure that they are all there and it is very slow to navigate around the website so I am continuing to add my notes here time permitting. Unless stated, there was no spontaneous mention of climate change by Mr Turnbull and he was not asked about it by journalists.

8th May - election announcement
9th May, Petrie, no mention, journalist asks - MT says Australia has very good plan and by offering higher emissions reduction targets Bill Shorten is losing the ability to negotiate (presumably for lower targets). All about cost.
10th May - Brisbane
12th May - Mornington Peninsula, MT mentions he has had discussion with Barack Obama who "thanked Australia for our commitment [on CC] ... and we committed each other to both our nations continuing to support the achievements of those targets that had been agreed by all the nations of the world at that very important conference [Paris Climate conference 2015]"
13th May - leaders' debate Sydney, MT no mention of CC (cf Shorten mentioned it in opening and closing remarks)
14th May, doorstop Sydney
15th May, health announcement Sydney
16th May, health statement Sydney
16th May, statement on ships, jobs
16th May - doorstop WA - asked about Labor and Greens deal, spoke about threat of "higher carbon tax"
17th May - statement on traffic link Darwin
17th May - Australian Border Force Darwin
17th May - radio interview Darwin
17th May - radio interview Darwin
18 May - radio interview Darwin
18 May - statement re Cairns Marine Precinct
18 May - door stop with Warren Entsch, Qld
18 May - Townsville
19 May - doorstop NSW
20 May - doorstop
21 May - doorstop
23 May - doorstop
24 May - doorstop
25 May - doorstop
26 May - doorstop re Indigenous issues
27 May - doorstop re Indigenous issues
28 May - doorstop re Headspace
30 May - Emu Plains announcement - asked about Great Barrier Reef, MT refers to existing emissions reduction targets
31 May Childrens Hospital NSW (twice) (asked about cuts to climate science at CSIRO, says CSIRO determines its own priorities)
1 June - doorstop Brisbane
1 June - forum in Qld
2 June - doorstop at mattress company, Vic
3 June - radio Adelaide
3 June - doorstop Adelaide
4 June - campaign speech Adelaide (brief mention CEFC projects but not CC)
6 June - girls sport Malvern
6 June - address young engineers
6 June - doorstop Melbourne
7 June - Press Conference Picton
8 June - Ulla Dulla
8 June - radio interview Alan Jones
9 June - doorstop Tas floods, qu re floods, climate change, talks about silt removal, says can't link directly with CC
9 June - address American Australian Association
10 June - stronger economy statement
11 June - doorstop
11 June - doorstop Sydney
13 June - doorstop Townsville (mentions CEFC money re Great Barrier Reef measures [which don't address CC directly])
13 June - doorstop Townsville
14 June - Petrie
14 June - doorstop
15 June - doorstop Perth
15 June - Alan Jones
15 June -  Perth
16 June - Qantas
16 June - press conference with Treasurer
16 June - Ramadan speech
17 June - Doorstop Alphadale
17 June - Neil Mitchell 3AW
17 June - Jobs North coast
18 June - Netball Deakin
19 June - Truck Rally
19 June - Trucking Industry
20 June - Southwest motorway
20 June - Lunch
20 June - Oran Park NSW - CEFC sustainable infrastructure mention
20 June - Smart Cities - climate change mention, CEFC mention
20 June - City Deal West Sydney
21 June -  Doorstop NT
21 June - Kenbi land claim handover
21 June - Territory  FM
21 June - Q and A - asked a question on position - said position consistent, higher targets were unspecified, claiming to have strong targets
22 June - M1 Gold Coast
22 June - 'Space' Bungalow, Qld
22 June - Alan Jones
22 June - Jobs, Cairns
23 June -Quickstep Geelong
23 June -  Doorstop Quickstep
23 June - Investing Geelong
23 June - CFA Highton
24 June - Devonport Sports facility
Updating to be continued

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