ON THE ATTACK: Capricornia MP Michelle Landry has dismissed the concerns raised by the Australia Institute.
ON THE ATTACK: Capricornia MP Michelle Landry has dismissed the concerns raised by the Australia Institute. Contributer

Politicians clash over the impact of climate change on CQ

CAPRICORNIA MP Michelle Landry warned the people of CQ not to read too much into climate change concerns raised by the Australia Institute and ANU representatives in Rockhampton yesterday.

She cited their lack of relevance in a region usually devoid of their attention.

"Central Queenslanders deserve better than to be lectured to by a bunch of blow-in latte sippers from Canberra,” Ms Landry said.

"These are two well-known left-wing think tanks whose primary objective is to spread fear and smear to make local workers feel responsible for global climate trends.

COMPARISON: The business-as-usual scenario (in red) is compared to the scenario where strong emission reduction is achieved (in blue).
COMPARISON: The business-as-usual scenario (in red) is compared to the scenario where strong emission reduction is achieved (in blue). Bureau of Meteorology

"By cherry-picking data, these people may have convinced themselves but Central Queenslanders are smart enough to know a straw man argument when they hear one.

"They know a local solution does not solve a global problem.”

Given Australia is responsible for roughly 1.3 percent of global emissions, Ms Landry said making changes locally was "rather ineffective in tackling the global trend”.

She quoted an exchange in a Senate Estimates hearing earlier this year where, Australia's Chief Scientist Dr Alan Finkel was asked by Senator Ian Macdonald, 'if we reduce the world's carbon emissions by 1.3 per cent, what impact would that have on the changing climate of the world?'

Dr Finkel replied, "Virtually nothing.”

HOTTER FUTURE: It is predicted that there will be a dramatic increase in the frequency of extreme heat days in summer. Under a BAU scenario on greenhouse emissions, the CSIRO and BoM estimate that Rockhampton could experience an average of one in four summer days over 35 degrees in 2030, one in 3.5 by 2050 and 47% - nearly half - of summer days in extreme heat by 2070.
HOTTER FUTURE: It is predicted that there will be a dramatic increase in the frequency of extreme heat days in summer. Under a BAU scenario on greenhouse emissions, the CSIRO and BoM estimate that Rockhampton could experience an average of one in four summer days over 35 degrees in 2030, one in 3.5 by 2050 and 47% - nearly half - of summer days in extreme heat by 2070. Bureau of Meteorology

Ms Landry said this was proof positive that the left's inane obsession with emissions was little more than virtue signalling.

"There are things that can be done and are being done to address climate change in this country but to pretend we can shut down our major industries and remain a viable, wealthy country is just nonsense,” she said.

"Each and every one of us should thank a coal miner next time we visit a hospital or public school in Queensland because it is their hard work and the royalties that follow that makes this country strong.

"Central Queenslanders need jobs, they need services, and they need to know the light will turn on when its dark and the aircon when it's hot.

"We do not need to be treated like criminals just because we know how these things are achieved; that's with coal.”

Shadow Minister for Climate Change and Energy Mark Butler said Rockhampton and Queensland stand to bear the consequences of LNP's inability to deal with climate change in any meaningful way.

Enova Community Energy Managing Director Tony Pfeiffer (left), Shadow Minister for Climate Change and Energy Mark Butler, State Labor Candidate for Ballina Asren Pugh and Enova Community Energy Chair Alison Crook.
Enova Community Energy Managing Director Tony Pfeiffer (left), Shadow Minister for Climate Change and Energy Mark Butler, State Labor Candidate for Ballina Asren Pugh and Enova Community Energy Chair Alison Crook. Contributed

"It's clear that the LNP has completely embraced an anti-renewable ideology and Scott Morrison will continue to dismiss any action on climate change,” Mr Butler said.

"Since the LNP Federal Government came to power, carbon pollution has been rising and based on the government's own projections, will continue to rise all the way to 2030.

"Climate change is happening and burying our heads in the sand like Michelle Landry and the LNP are doing will simply mean Central Queensland will be left to deal with the economic and social impacts of climate change inaction.”

ROCKHAMPTON HEATWAVES: The trend of over 35 degree days in Rockhampton has increased significantly over the last 75 years.
ROCKHAMPTON HEATWAVES: The trend of over 35 degree days in Rockhampton has increased significantly over the last 75 years. Bureau of Meteorology

He said Federal Labor had a common sense pathway to a low pollution economy.

"We'll support cleaner power generation and the lower power prices and new jobs and industries that go with it - this will be good for jobs in Central Queensland, good for the economy and good for the environment,” Mr Butler said.

Ms Landry said it was disappointing to see Labor joining the anti-coal comments, especially given their local Capricornia candidate Russell Robertson has worked in coal mines for many years.

"Minister Butler's comments just further re-inforce just how out of touch the ALP is with Central Queensland,” Ms Landry said.

"One wonders whether their local candidate has the same anti-coal, anti-mining, anti-jobs outlook of his federal counterparts.

"Many people are wondering just what does this fellow stand for; if not mining, what?!”

She said regardless of the "guff and spin that might flow from Labor headquarters, she was focused on the job needs of her constituents”.

"I will keep working for the projects and the industries and the infrastructure that will deliver jobs and opportunities for us here in CQ,” she said.

In a statement on Monday, Australia'a new Environment Minister Melissa Price explained what the coalition intended to do towards addressing the issue of climate change.

Environment Minister Melissa Price
Environment Minister Melissa Price LUKAS COCH

"One of my responsibilities as the new Minister for Environment is to ensure Australia remains on track to meet our international commitments,” Ms Price said.

"To be clear on this, Australia will meet our Paris emissions target without compromising the economy.

"Our approach remains the best way to meet our 2030 target.”

She said no country in the world was relying on a single policy.

"This is the responsible approach to policy, as is reviewing your existing policies to ensure they are meeting your objectives,” she said

"The Emissions Reduction Fund - a $2.55 billion investment - is one of the tools we are using to reduce emissions.

"The ERF has contracted with farmers, landholders and Indigenous communities to deliver practical investment, helping our regional communities while reducing emissions.”

FLOODING DATA: Three of Rockhampton's eight major flooding events over the last 150 years have occurred within the last six summers in 2011, 2013 and 2017.
FLOODING DATA: Three of Rockhampton's eight major flooding events over the last 150 years have occurred within the last six summers in 2011, 2013 and 2017. Bureau of Meteorology

As well as helping meet Australia's international obligations, she said the ERF helps to re-vegetate degraded land, improve livestock management, reduce high-intensity wildfires in Northern Australia's savannas and provide a much needed secondary source of income in times of drought.

She mentioned the coalition's $1 billion investment in other Landcare initiatives to help farming communities, the Green Army program, and their $450 million Regional Land Partnership program which aims to improve land sustainability, find better ways to combat drought and boost future productivity of land into the future.

"Our investment will help farmers and agricultural industries improve soil, biodiversity and vegetation, to increase the capacity of our farms to adapt both to climate change and evolving market demands,” she said.

"We need to start seeing our environment as an asset. Managing it and maximising benefits on the ground and for our communities. Good environmental and economic outcomes are not mutually exclusive.”



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