tip off

Screw consultation, let’s just ban stuff: how to really fight climate change

We’ve tried giving business lobbyists and spinmeisters the chance to voice their concerns over environmental regulation. That didn’t work. It’s time to play hardball — and businesses will gratefully fall in line.

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Essential: Abbott’s MH17 performance lifts Coalition

Tony Abbott’s handling of the MH17 disaster has won the approval of all voting groups and sent the Coalition’s vote to its highest point in months, today’s Essential Report shows.

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Hunt pins hopes on uncompetitive clean coal technology

Analysis of cost forecasts for clean coal technology suggests it is uncompetitive compared to renewables.

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Climate sceptic HQ: undercover at Ian Plimer’s book launch

Ian Plimer’s latest book argues manmade climate change is not real and environmentalists are damaging the planet. Crikey infiltrated the book launch to see Plimer’s fans in action.

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Get Fact: testing Ian Plimer on wind and solar power

Ian Plimer, an ally of Gina Rinehart, has written a new book criticising environmentalists and casting doubt on climate change. Renewable energy expert Dr Mark Diesendorf does some fact-checking.

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Tips and rumours

WA cuts renewables? … Ian Plimer’s religious links … missing: PM’s Literary Awards …

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IPCC puts more heat on Abbott’s anti-science climate policies

The IPCC says action on climate change is urgent but affordable. The Abbott government says it will “wait and see”, all the while dismantling the mechanisms that could achieve higher targets.

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Cross your heart, hope for pride

Crikey readers talk the provenance of putting one’s hand on one’s heart and the problem with solar panels.

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Can energy utilities avoid same fate as telecom companies?

The fixed-line telephone business has lost nearly half its customers. What can energy utilities learn from that experience? Is there anything they can do to stop customers going solo?

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Policy uncertainty drives renewable energy investors overseas

Australia is missing out on hundreds of billions of dollars in renewable energy markets as investors are driven offshore by the policy uncertainty of the Abbott government.

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Sceptical review: clean energy finding no friends in high places

The renewable energy sector has talked tough on the government’s review of the Renewable Energy Target, but in reality the industry is in very deep trouble. Dick Warburton seems certain to scale it back.

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David and Goliath battle over solar: why they want you on the grid

Australian households are flocking to solar, screwing up the business models of the nation’s state-owned electricity generators. Politicians have yet to come to grips with the situation.

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Will Abbott appoint an IPA man to a renewables review?

Talk in Canberra is the government is poised to appoint a leading anti-wind and anti-solar campaigner from the IPA to a new panel to review the renewable energy target. It spells disaster for the sector.

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The White elephant clean coal project Hunt loves that just won’t work

White Energy’s clean coal project just won’t work, so what about the millions in public funding the company has been given?

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Trying hard to make Direct Action add up

Let’s be honest: the carbon tax has so far not reduced Australia’s carbon emissions at all. Could the Abbott government’s Direct Action policy be better after all?

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Coalition draws a near-blank on support for wind power

How many Coalition MPs really support wind farms? Not many, it would seem.

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Crikey Blogs | ENVIRONMENT|

Cold day on the sun

Something unusual is going on with the sun. It should be at the peak of an 11-year-long solar cycle, but it is staying cool. Ben Sandilands explores what this means for us Earthlings.

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The ‘golden age of gas’ not in Oz yet

Australia has many decades of gas. But, if this is true, how can we be looking at big gas price increases and possibly supply shortfalls within a few years? A new Grattan Institute report by Tony Wood delves into the big issues.

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Essential: voters strong on vaccination, wind farms, Aussie cars

Voters want the government to go further on sports betting and strongly support compulsory vaccination, today’s Essential Report finds. Farz Edraki and Bernard Keane report.

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Climate: sweeping cuts to programs — and more to come?

The budget has axed $2.4 billion from climate programs as the government compensates for a likely big drop in revenue from the carbon price from 2015. And there might be much bigger cuts to come next year.

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The dirty secret of fossil fuels: more expensive than you think

Fossil fuel fans say we can’t afford to switch over to renewables. But maybe we can’t afford not to. Laura Eadie, research director for the Centre for Policy Development’s Sustainable Economy Program, reports.

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PromiseWatch 2013: climate change and carbon pricing

Crikey’s PromiseWatch project shifts its gaze to climate change.

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The Power Index: carbon cutters, Michael Fraser at #3

Michael Fraser has a dual personality: he heads up a company with a massive carbon footprint that is also heavily involved in renewable energy. So why is he walking both sides of the line — and how did this quiet company man rise to the top? Climate Spectator and Crikey investigate.

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The Power Index: carbon cutters, Oliver Yates at #4

Oliver Yates is the ex-Macquarie banker who turned his back on a lucrative career to head up the government’s controversial (and possibly short-lived) green bank. Why did this “maverick” do it — and what will he do with $10 billion of your money?

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The Power Index: carbon cutters, Martin Green at #8

Australian solar pioneer Martin Green is the man behind the solar entrepreneurs of the world. His early research and 40-year teaching career has driven a generation of solar development and commercialisation. But he keeps his head down when it comes to the politics of climate policy.

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