John Howard says Mr Rudd now agrees with him on climate change. Oh, really? 

Does Mr Rudd oppose ratifying the Protocol that the Howard government itself negotiated in Kyoto? No, he’s said he’ll ratify immediately.

Does Mr Rudd agree that it’s enough to support an emissions trading scheme without having it linked to a 60% emission reduction target by mid century? No — Rudd’s committed to that target already and said his trading scheme will be consistent with it, while Howard has never committed to deep cuts in Australia’s emissions.

Does Mr Rudd agree that it’s enough to have a Clean Energy target that requires virtually no increase in renewable energy capacity above and beyond what is already covered by existing renewable capacity, the federal MRET (which Howard refused to extend), and the state clean energy mandates (that Mr Howard opposed)? No, Labor has committed to a far more ambitious 20% MRET.

Does Mr Rudd agree the bar should be lowered so that “clean coal” and nuclear power qualify under clean energy targets? No, nuclear and clean coal do not qualify for Labor’s MRET.

Has Mr Rudd made US ratification of any climate change agreement a precondition of Australian ratification — as has the Howard cabinet? No, or else Rudd would not be able to commit to ratifying Kyoto immediately.

Has Mr Rudd agreed that if Australia is serious about climate change it has to have nuclear power — that it is the “cleanest and greenest” option of all? No, Rudd has said he believes deep cuts in Australia’s emissions are achievable without nuclear power.

Maybe Kevin Rudd has put the echo in economics but it is John Howard putting the envy in environmentalism – and he still as an awful long way to go when it comes to climate change. I’ve no doubt George W Bush and John Howard agree on greenhouse policy, but not so John Howard and Kevin Rudd.