As expected, the government has lost its mind over Labor’s zero emissions by 2050 policy, despite major private interests, including BHP, the Business Council of Australia, as well as the UK conservatives, and practically every single state and territory in Australia already on board.
Angus Taylor says we don’t need targets. Except for the 2030 target. That’s fine. But 2050 – pffft. What the government has is a long-term strategy. See the difference? People will just get on with it, he says. It has to be “technology not taxes which lead the way”, Taylor says. Labor has ruled out a carbon tax.
Stunningly though, Taylor hasn’t been the headline act today, because Barnaby Joyce is feelingly stunningly unleashed, and decided to bring his particular brand of discourse – yelling over people in hallways – to a press conference with Labor’s Joel Fitzgibbon.
Here’s a taster from the Barnaby Joyce school of debate:
What a load of rubbish. What a load of pig manure. He’s going to reach out to you. He’s going to reach out to the coalmines. Don’t worry, fellas, we’re reaching out to you. We’re reaching out and saying you’re going to lose your job. Reaching out, that’s how you’re going to do it. You’re going to make the equation work by putting trees back on people’s properties whether they like it or not. We’re going to let the shrubs grow back on the country.
It’s not just mercury which is in retrograde – Australia’s political discourse is so backwards on this topic, it’s like watching your neighbours take up the wheel and pretending you’re fine just pushing your rocks around with your back.
Oh, and emissions in Australia dropped by just 0.3% in the year to September last year.
We’ll bring you all of the latest meltdowns, as well as everything else – hey, maybe we’ll get some legislation to talk about this fortnight – with Mike Bowers, Katharine Murphy, Paul Karp and Sarah Martin at your service.
I’ve had about a third of a coffee. Blessed be.
Let’s get into it.