Climate change

The ruling by the NSW Land and Environment Court on February 8 to reject the Rocky Hill coalmine outside Gloucester is being felt beyond its local community and will have implications for human rights as well as climate change policy.

You may remember the joy of spotting a favourite animal or plant at a place you would infrequently visit. When, the next time you visited, they had disappeared, you’d come up with a banal explanation that never included extinction. But now a United Nations report says that unless there is a change in approach, we will lose 1 million species forever.

Whichever major party claims government on May 18, neither can legitimately claim to have a mandate for its dangerously inadequate carbon emission reduction policies, writes Pip Hinman.

On May 11, sensors at the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii recorded that the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere had risen above 415 parts per million (ppm). The safe level is 350 ppm.

This is the first time since humans have existed that there has been this much carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and it is well beyond the safe limit.

2040
Documentary by Damon Gameau
In cinemas

Damon Gameau is an environmentalist who wants to go beyond the dire facts of the impending climate catastrophe. In 2040, he convincingly demonstrates that we already have the technology to not only stop carbon emissions, we have the ability to draw carbon out of the atmosphere to make the world safe again.

This ensemble piece ranges over a series of time zones, travelling from the near future to the early 20th century, mostly in Australia, but also the Ellis Island immigration centre in New York. Its main segment is a deceptively simple, kitchen-sink style, family drama in which home truths are exposed and conventional dishonesties unravelled.

The European United Left/Nordic Green Left (GUE/NGL) group, a coalition of left parties in the European Parliament, launched its Climate Emergency Manifesto in Strasbourg on April 15, ahead of the European elections at the end of next month, firmly marking “just climate action” as the group’s number one priority.

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg only mentioned the word “climate” twice in his election budget speech, and almost as an afterthought.

Adani has launched another public relations’ offensive in a bid to secure its last approvals before it can start work on its Carmichael coalmine in central Queensland.

Climate Justice: Hope, Resilience, and the Fight for a Sustainable Future
By Mary Robinson
Bloomsbury Publishing, 2018

Mary Robinson, the former president of Ireland, is undoubtedly sincere in her determination to fight climate change and “putting people at the heart of the solution”. Unfortunately, her new book shows that sincerity is not enough.

Pages

Subscribe to Climate change