Politics, especially when our leaders utilise the media, is almost indistinguishable from marketing. Denial by marketing becomes all inclusive. Sticking to the marketing sales line, means denial of climate emergency, denial of technology change, denial of total systems change.
On the ABC insiders program, opposition leader Anthony Albanese stated that ALP policy goals will aim towards zero net greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. By this time, I am most likely going to be already deceased, possibly finished off by a deadly heat wave. The existence of this global civilisation is at the moment questionable by then. Perhaps no institutions will exist in 2050, which have the task of counting greenhouse gas emissions, and therefore, these will be zero by default.
On questions of more immediate targets and strategies, Mr Albanese was most evasive, with hints about this being subject to the politics of businesses, mining and unions, rather than being due to our global climate emergency and having existential urgency. A greenhouse gas impost is still the great Australian political bugaboo.
Mr Scott Morrison , as the prime minister for the Minerals Councils, sets the tone of the government position, as being too frightened to consider any climate policy that has implications for "jobs and growth", as well as much more likely, that also raises the misgivings of his mates in the mining industries. Mr Morrison stressed the impossibility of having economic certainty, therefore having no climate policy is a certainty. Without a precise "costing", any climate policy will not be considered. This is the Australian government practice of bullshit marketing to the clueless, by the clueless.
The predictions for "jobs and growth", for the current policies of carrying out business as usual, without significant change, are in fact extremely uncertain, and becoming more so every day. Global markets and global heating are both parts of interacting complex systems. Jobs and growth depend on rapid changing global and local conditions.
A viral epidemic starts in China, and restrictions to tourism, travel, and overseas students hit the Australian economy. The coal industry is in serious global decline, with rising costs, and competition from Gas and Renewables. India has declared it intends to cut down on coal imports over the next four years. Unfortunately India plans to replace Australian coal with local mining, and likely Australia will not be able to stop this.
Indian coal ventures in Australia are going bankrupt. The Adani project for the Galilee basin, supposedly the most financially robust, has books with $30 million of assets, and about $1.8 billion dollars of liabilities. "It looks like a corporate collapse waiting to happen". It will be highly effective as a tax deduction loss.
Global electricity generation by coal fell by about 3% in 2019, a record fall. The replacement of coal by gas burning, is at the very best, only neutral with respect to our global heating emergency. The Australian Greens have submitted a "bill" to ask fossil fuel export companies to pay compensation for damages caused by global heating climate extremes. A reduction of tens of billions for miners received public tax subsidies would be good as well.
Higher efficiencies for solar panel technologies and electric energy storage are becoming available for mass production. Perovskite enhanced solar tandem cell design is "nailed", and the factories are being built. Transport technology disruption by electric vehicles is available now and change is already the expectation. Days are numbered, for the privately owned car powered by the Internal Combustion Engine. On the downsides, the rise in greenhouse gas emissions still continues. The frequency and severity of climate extreme events continues to rise, and has major impacts on both their victims and the global insurance and financial industries.
On the issues of culture, money, value, and the meaning of human lives, the ideas that only work and consumption are the most important ethics that drive the economy, for human well being and self-worth, will need to be forgotten and replaced. Jobs are going to be still important, with rapid changes of technology. The quantity and quality of human labour, and social purpose, have to undergo rapid change as environmental and social limits restrict the sorts of economic systems we can sustain. Average consumption is going to have to fall, and so will the amount and difficulty of work we need to do for it. Environmental systems on the other hand, are going to need a lot of rescuing.
Only the truely clueless can pretend that major change will not be happening, and should be avoided at all costs. Accurate prediction of the future is impossible, but we should strive for possible good.