Australian election enters the home strait?

We are in the home strait now. Which will prevail?

Newspoll (results available on Poll Bludger) shows the yawning gap that has opened up in two party preferred (TPP) terms:

I’ve taken it back to months before the 2019 election, which was on 18 May 2019, to show that the situation now is not like the situation then. With six days to go, incumbent PM Scott Morrison is looking for a miracle. Simon Benson, Political Editor for the Oz, wrote after the penultimate poll:

    According to the latest Newspoll, Labor would not only win government but it would win with a comfortable majority.

    Any notion of a hung parliament is extinguished on these numbers, irrespective of whether any Climate 200 independents get elected or not.

    Morrison needed the the contest to tighten with only two weeks to run. Newspoll has shown the opposite.

Continue reading Australian election enters the home strait?

Living and dying with COVID-19

We don’t use our own brains on Covid rules in Queensland any more. We just follow whatever NSW and Victoria decide.

So Queensland will ease Covid isolation rules from Thursday, bringing the state’s rules closer in line with NSW and Victoria, where ‘living with Covid’ is the go.

From the ABC monitoring site, Omicron is not kind to oldies, especially males:

Continue reading Living and dying with COVID-19

Morrison’s path to victory?

Scott Morrison calls federal election for May 21, setting up battle with Labor’s Anthony Albanese

Is it a personal battle between two leaders?

In large part, yes, because they certainly want to talk about each other, and the media do not want to talk about policy, having settled on the notion that neither side has any, although any journalist who is interested can find Labor’s policies here, the Liberal Party’s story book (plan) here. The Nationals’ Plan is much the same, but slightly different. For The Greens, it depends what you click on when you go to their site, but this is headlined as their Election Policy Platform.

All this is happening in an environment where trust in government, politics and politicians has largely been destroyed. Continue reading Morrison’s path to victory?

The Great Barrier Reef: a “living, resilient, beautiful system” under growing threat

Scientists told us in early February this year that at 1.5°C the Great Barrier Reef would be toast. See Catastrophic worldwide reef warning is ‘even more dire than we’d previously thought’:

On fossil fuels, Queensland needs to pause and consider

The Queensland Government has put out for comment a Queensland resources industry development plan, Draft for consultation, November 2021with a consultation deadline of 11 February 2022.

My concern is that the future plans for coal and gas do not sit well the latest science and with what the world must collectively do to prevent the current climate crisis from becoming a tragedy. Within that I have a specific concern about the plans relating to the fracking of gas in the Channel Country. Relevant to these concerns I’ll make four statements with some supporting notes. (Last updated, 27 February 2022) Continue reading On fossil fuels, Queensland needs to pause and consider

Methane worse than we thought, will wreck the planet


Gas has been seen as a transitional fuel and an opportunity to make money. We now know that it is a major contributor to the climate crisis and should be seen as a planet wrecker. This calls for a reset of climate policy.

I go the long way around (sorry, we have 3,500 words in this one) but context is the most important factor in this reset. Continue reading Methane worse than we thought, will wreck the planet

Weekly salon 12/1

1. 2021 in graphs

Peter Martin has assembled 10 graphs from articles he has edited in 2021.

Each tells a powerful story. For example, it is clear that sooner or later something will have to be done about JobSeeker when it is forecast to become a mere fraction of the old age pension, which is miserly by international standards. Remember around a third of pensioners already live in poverty. Continue reading Weekly salon 12/1

Weekly salon 7/1: 2022 new year edition

1. Sawatdi bpi mai kap!

That is a Thai new year’s greeting which means means:

    May you find compassion, loving kindness and equanimity along your paths over the next year!

On a personal level that would help. I think most people feel well rid of 2021, and hope for better in 2022.

2. Will humanity survive?

Andrew Leigh, they say, is always the smartest man in the room, and one of the nicest. Since entering parliament in 2008 he has now launched his 8th book. This Saturday Paper article (no doubt pay-walled) is an interview with Andrew Leigh on humanity’s one-in-six chance of ending. Continue reading Weekly salon 7/1: 2022 new year edition

Seasons Greetings 2021

I love this image of our fair city, so I’m reprising it from last year.

Last year I said 2020 was dominated by the four “C’s” – Coronavirus, climate change, China, and corruption in politics.

This year was much the same, and again I found myself overwhelmed in the weeks leading up to Christmas. Luckily others were better organised, so a good time was had by all. Continue reading Seasons Greetings 2021

Cleaning out coal

When Shadow Minister for Climate Change and Energy Chris Bowen stated at the Press Council that no jobs would be lost in coal or gas through Labor’s policy he received a strong challenge from Mike Foley of the SMH and The Age (from about 40:00 on the tape) who pointed out that the Government’s modelling showed coal-fired power reducing from 25GW to 14GW, which was more than can be accounted for by stated station closure timelines. Labor is going harder on renewables and claims that 82% of power generation will be renewables by 2030. Surely this means early closure of coal.

Bowen said stations may close, the market will decide, but there was no causal relationship with the policy, and the small percentage is explained by the fact that if we follow the call to ‘electrify everything’, especially heating and transport, much more power will be needed.

Coincidentally AEMO (Australian Energy Market Operator) has just produced it’s 2022 Draft ISP Consultation plan which show coal disappearing, evaporating before our eyes. Continue reading Cleaning out coal

Climate change, sustainability, plus sundry other stuff