Friday was the eve of the AFL & NRL grand final weekend and the government chose that evening to release our nation's latest greenhouse gas emissions data. Obviously, if you're one of the 84% of Australians wanting action on climate change, your outrage is a given.
There are many in our community who reject the idea that the planet is warming and/or that it's being caused by human activity. Regardless of one's perspective, for the conservative, diplomatic and economic reasons outlined below, I don't believe the government's conduct on this should be accepted.
I truly believe that our institutions and treaties must be respected. I've also always believed that respect must be earned and maintained. Thus, by holding off on releasing this data until after hours on the Friday of the busiest weekend of the year, we've been deceived and our trust broken by this fledgling Morrison government. Also, whilst we remain a signatory to the Paris Agreement, we are breaching the trust of the international community which could have negative consequences later on.
In diplomatic terms, these consequences may be as simple as our Pacific neighbors bad-mouthing us behind our backs. However, it may also result in those same neighbors welcoming Chinese investment and political influence in our region - an issue our government is already struggling with.
The economic consequences are two-fold. On the one hand, renewable energy is next industrial revolution. To reject them would be akin to our rejection of steam power in the 1700s & 1800s, rejecting fossil fuels in the 1800s & 1900s or rejecting computers and the digital era that began in the 80s and continues today. Each of these changes and technological upgrades have seen new innovations which have increased our collective quality of life and created new jobs in new industries both here and across the world which in turn lead to economic growth.
Already we're seeing innovation and new jobs in solar power generation in our region. Thus, whether you believe climate change is a hoax or not, the resulting policy will (and is already) paying dividends.