Correction: Dr Andrea Carson is a lecturer in media and politics at the University of Melbourne, not Monash University as was incorrectly stated yesterday in Crikey’s piece “Watchdog or Lapdog: why should you read the business pages?

On climate change and the Hawke government

Niall Clugston writes: Re. “Hawke’s climate change crisis still ignored by Australian govt” (yesterday). Crikey notes that the Hawke government was struggling with the issues of climate change way back in 1989. However, Dr Chauncey D Leake raised the issue in speech back in 1959, after being appointed President of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, which publishes the journal Science. He discussed how many trees needed to be planted to offset each car and each aeroplane. He raised the issue of the ice caps melting. The text of his speech was widely disseminated in the 1960s, including in Australia.

Ian Lowe writes: Paddy Manning significantly understates the irresponsibility of the Howard-Hunt line. As well as demanding the uniquely generous target of 108% of 1990 emissions, Robert Hill successfully pleaded for land-use changes to be included. Everyone at the Kyoto meeting knew what this meant: Australia’s 1990 baseline was inflated by about 25% by including broad-scale land clearing, so the actions of NSW and Queensland governments curbing this practice effectively meant that Australia’s target was to increase emissions by over 30%. It should be an embarrassment to admit we have met this outrageous target, when large sections of the community are already suffering the impacts of climate change.

On the new trustees at the Art Gallery of NSW

Greg Welsh, Associate Director of Media and Communications at Macquarie University writes: Yesterday’s Tips and Rumours section reports that Professor Dowton “recommends himself” to the NSW Arts Minister because of his place of birth. However Professor Dowton did not nominate himself for the Trustee role.

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey