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Dear All

Below is a letter I had published on 7 May on climate change, albeit edited. There is some interesting follow up in Sheridan’s article in the Week-End Australian (8/9 May) reporting on his interview with Obama’s foreign policy man for East Asia and the Pacific, Kurt Campbell. While one should not take too seriously what foreign policy gentlemen say, they do provide an indication of which way the boss is thinking. Campbell is unlikely to say something about a major policy direction to foreign governments, let alone to foreign correspondents, unless it reflects the current view at the White House.

Sheridan says that Campbell agrees with what he said in his column on 6 May about “the world ...moving away from emphasis on emissions trading schemes or cap and trade measures”. He quotes Campbell as adding that “we remain committed to greenhouse gas reduction”.  But also has Campbell then asking whether “the better focus (is) in investing in green technologies or mechanisms for creating incentives for reducing emissions”.

All this still adheres to the supposed scientific consensus. But it suggests  the US is on the direct regulation of emissions wave length rather than Rudd’s ETS. By contrast, Abbott can claim he is on Obama’s wave length.

Des Moore

PS Sheridan is giving this year’s Deakin Trust lecture on 19 May, which unfortunately I will miss.

The science is in, Greg
letter published in The Australian, 7 May 2010
[bracketed sections omitted by editor]

[Your foreign editor, Greg Sheridan, is a highly regarded assessor of the foreign policies of Australia and other countries.] It is unsurprising that Greg Sheridan concludes that Australia should not adopt an emissions reduction policy that would impose big costs not borne by “most other developed economies” (No need to lead from the front on ETS action”, Opinion 6/5).

It is surprising, however, that he not only limits his advised policy constraint to such countries but also says he doesn’t “know whether the scientific consensus is right or not”.

This suggests he has not assessed the revelations in recent months of basic errors in the science and in the measurement of temperatures used as backing for the supposed consensus.

[One would hope that, just as he frequently questions supposed consensuses on other issues, he would improve his homework on emissions policies. One does not need to be a scientist to do that.]

Des Moore
South Yarra. Vic

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