My letter to the PM: Please pay our climate debt at Copenhagen
Dear Prime Minister,
I urge you to recognise Australia's obligations to the world in it's negotiations at the Copenhagen COP-15 summit. Australia heavily burdens the world with it's continued reliance on coal and natural gas export industries. This is a short-sighted economy which is extremely exposed to changes in production, demand and political influence from multinational corporations. While successive Australian governments have provided enormous taxpayer subsidies to these carbon intensive industries, we have invested relatively tiny amounts of money in renewable energy industries. This is holding back Australian research and development in knowledge intensive renewable technologies.
I urge your government to commit to meeting an carbon emissions standard of 350 parts per million. I urge that Australia meet the European statement of 30% reduction from 1990 emissions levels to be achieved by 2020. I ask you to recognise that a carbon emissions trading scheme is a rehashed Liberal party policy that will simply establish a pollution cartel, enabling the largest polluters to avoid changing their behaviour while passing on the costs to others. The European carbon trading scheme demonstrates this.
I urge you and the rest of the government to recognise that Australia must advocate and pay climate debt reparations to third world nations most at risk of climate change. In particular, Pacific island and the poorest African nations require climate debt payments in full, not loans, to recover from the environmental damage caused by first world nations. I urge you to reject completely the undemocratic "Danish text" and to advocate massive investment in the poorest nations of the world. The figure of $10 billion per year for third world mitigation is nowhere near enough, developed nations must pay at least $100 billion per year. The benefits from donor/recipient rapport, the development of new markets, development of renewal energy industries, and the demonstration of commitment to a better world without preconditions, more than outweighs the costs of continuing to prop-up carbon intensive industries from the past century.