Australian Lefty on Politics, Governance, Science and Info Management

They dig it both ways

Posted by Dave Bath on 2011-01-20

Those on peak mining bodies (and I suppose Minister for Miners Ferguson) must be very intelligent indeed if Douglas Adams was correct, that intelligence is the ability to hold two opposing views in your head at the same.

The miners can both assert and refute the urgency of climate change and need for mitigating action.

Climate change is such a problem that we must overturn our long-held strategic policy of exporting uranium only to signatories of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.  Indeed we must sell the stuff not only to those who might use nuclear weapons as a last resort in a world war (with high resistance to usage), but to a region where tactical use (much lower resistance) has been publically mooted – in this case India.

Simultaneously, climate change is not real, so we must sell dirty brown coal to keep our economy chugging along.

Never mind that we should be concentrating R&D on developing clean capacitance for variable renewable energy sources, ideally in transportable form (hydrogen a good bet), and/or deploying existing gear that harnesses wave energy.

With transportable clean fuel like hydrogen, a huge area for collecting solar power, a huge coastline, we could be the largest per-capita energy exporter in the world.

Oh no, that can’t happen, because it would be too sensible.

When a commercial group and their representatives in Cabinet can get their way despite arguments that are internally consistent, while there is a way to both provide clean energy to the world, a way that has more potential customers sooner (nuclear power stations take a lot to set up and maintain), a way that would provide equivalent sums to our trade balance, then what does that mean?

It means that government policy is determined more by and for existing plutocrats than the economic and environmental interests of our people and planet.

It means the government is less concerned about the trade balance as a whole, but with a particular group of individuals.

It’s as is we were pandering to scribes with pens and vellum after the printing press was invented.

Dumb.  Dishonest.  Dangerous.


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