The Uninhabitable Earth

“If your anxiety about global warming is dominated by fears of sea-level rise, you are barely scratching the surface of what terrors are possible.”

This is the opening line of a 2017 article by David Wallace-Wells published in New York magazine where he sets out his understanding of what is coming ( ).

He paints a very murky view of the threats facing us. Now he has followed his original article up with a book.

“The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming” by David Wallace-Wells (Tim Duggan Books, to be released 19 Feb 2019)

In an interview with the author:

( )

” It … means we are engineering our own devastation practically in real time. How much will depend on how we act, how we behave, how we respond.   ” and ” … climate change is obviously an existential threat and it is naive to imagine we could respond to it without some people being scared. ”

Hard words indeed.

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Draft Climate Change Policy (CCC)

Draft Climate Change Policy (Central Coast Council)

The Central Coast Council, NSW has a proposed Draft Climate Change Policy. Council has issued the draft for exhibition and to raise awareness of the issue across the community. There are some workshops being held over the next few weeks. See Councils website for the information pack (which includes the policy and workshop agenda) and follow the links to register).

Wednesday 20 February 2019, Mingara Recreation Club 6pm – 8:30pm
Tuesday 26 February 2019, Erina Centre, Erina Fair 6pm – 8:30pm
Wednesday 27 February 2019, Mantra Ettalong, 6pm – 8:30pm
Thursday 7 March 2019, Camp Breakaway, San Remo 6pm – 8:30pm
Wednesday 13 March 2019, Wyong Civic Centre 6pm – 8:30pm

The policy itself is critical to bring consideration of mitigation (the reduction of emissions) and adaptation (preparing for the impacts) into all activities of Council.

Increasing heat and other affects of Climate Change will impact on all Council’s infrastructure including roads, sewage and water, transport, buildings, parks, etc. Impacts on Council’s regulatory controls such as planning are also occurring. For example, provision of land zoned for business has traditionally been sited on flat, low-lying land. Such land is often more likely to be flood prone than residential areas. Increasing rainfall intensity (e.g. the Townsville flooding currently underway) is likely to impact more heavily on our business parks and therefore ultimately on our economic activity. Council’s responsibility to provide suitable land for business and commercial activity requires them to consider increasing flooding over time due to Climate Change. This policy is critical to supporting planning for an efficient and functional regional economy into the future.

While there are those who are concerned about the presence of one phrase in the policy (planned retreat) and regardless of how waterfront property might be protected, the broad scale of climate change demands a community wide response at all levels of government.

Central Coast Council must have an effective and broad-ranging Climate Change Policy that allows for flexibility in design of responses to impacts as well as for the rapid reduction of emissions. The draft policy does provide an effective step in the right direction.

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A Powerfull Message

A truly powerful argument from Marnie Cotton who travelled to Canberra to talk to pollies. Our leaders are letting us down on emissions reductions with Australia’s emissions rising again in 2017 following increases in 2015 and 2016.
Demand that your politicians take action.
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Climate Council Calls for more Renewable Energy

After a while in the wilderness, this site could see a bit more activity from now on. We start with this little post on renewable energy and the need for deeper cuts to emissions.

The Climate Council has issued a Report that sets out a program to have 60% renewable electricity in Aust by 2030. This, they say, is closer to what we need to do to meet our Paris commitments.

They analyze the NEG (National Energy Guarantee) of the Coalition Government to show it is inadequate.


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Australia’s PM On The Spot

2,000 scientists recently endorsed an open letter to our Prime Minster Turnbull calling for a halt to coal to save the world’s coral reefs. With 50% of global coral already dead, and a global bleaching event that started in 2014 still underway and ready to hit the Caribbean next, the Coral Reef Symposium in Hawaii issued the urgent call for leadership from Australia (see

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At long last! Climate Change figures in the debate

After a long election campaign of some 7 months, including a change of leader and many policy debates, Climate Change finally raised its head on Monday – just three days before the media blackout.

The most important issue! And ne where the main parties differ:-  How to deal with Climate Change. There are two parts to this:- one is how to mitigate (reduce emissions) and the other is how to adapt. Adaptation has not raised a single question during the entire campaign. Not even the Greens have raised this issue or perhaps the media have failed to report such. But I will focus on mitigation as that has been the main part of the political debate for a long time.

First, lets look at the target: 5% is agreed by both Labor and Coalition parties, that is, 5% reduction on Australia’s year 2000 emissions by 2020. The argument is that this is a lot as on projections for increased demand in recent years, we would have increased our emissions by around 10% between 2008 and 2020 under the business as usual scenario. It should be pointed out that this is a 4% reduction on 1990 emissions – a woeful target when compared to the EU which has already reduced their emissions from 1990 levels by 11% and plan to reduce a further 10% or so by 2020.

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Fear the Fossil Fuel Future Shock

Just how much of Australia’s coal should we export or allow to be burned and what is the implication for Australia’s economy if we leave our current reserves in the ground?

Well, the latest report from Carbon Tracker Initiative deals with just this issue and follows hard on their report regarding the investment bubble in the fossil fuel industry (

The report on Australia’s coal reserves labels Oz as a “carbon bomb”. If we burn our reserves (or sell to someone else to burn) Australia would be responsible for 150 Gigatonnes of CO2 emissions or roughly one third of the total world budget.

Climate Progress has a round up in their own inimitable style here:-

Scientists have been telling us for a long time now that we need to replace our fossil fuels. Lets make it a priority for this election to have a plan for this replacement, for the shutting down of our coal mining, even of our gas industry. There is no reason why we cannot change over to renewables on a nation-wide scale.

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