Bernard Keane’s call for states to up their fight against the Commonwealth’s National Energy Guarantee prompted some of yesterday’s most fiery reader activity yesterday. Who would have thought that you would all have so many opinions on climate change and those who continue to ignore it?

On the states’ NEG fight

Gregory Bailey writes: Whilst Turnbull is nihilistic to the point that he is interested only in being called Prime Minister, a position into which he has placed no positive effort in terms of decisive action, Australians in general are equally to blame. What would it take to mobilise 80% of the population aged over fifteen to write letters to their local member, the PM and the leader of the opposition, asking that coal mining be phased out over a decade or so, that massive encouragement be given to renewables, that land clearing be halted and tens of thousands of trees planted to form carbon sinks? I fear that apathy and a “head in the sand” denialism would prevent this from happening, and I am not sure what else would motivate people to force their elected representatives to act.

Terry Mills writes: The stumbling block appears to be whether to lock in the emissions target in legislation (requiring any change to be passed by both houses of parliament) or to allow any changes to be brought about by regulation (merely requiring the minister of the day to take advice from experts and then use his/her discretion to make the change). Normally a variable such as this would be regulatory — Turnbull and Frydenberg just need to stare down Abbott and his mates and agree to regulatory change.

Roger Clifton: A series of global disasters may create the stage for international leadership in a global war against carbon. Once on a war footing, denial would become difficult anywhere, if not criminal, and bickering between our states would be out of the question.

Geoffrey Edwards writes: It is extraordinary that we seem to have only two options on the table: business as usual, which means indecision and inaction; or the NEG in its current form, without amendment. One exhausts patience trying to affix adjectives to this lame effort at policy formulation. The Commonwealth should recognise the States’ sovereignty. They control most aspects of electricity generation, distribution, fuel supply, building codes, local government and community involvement and a host of other fields required to build an effective model of electricity supply.  A second advance would be for the advocates of the NEG to accept the legitimacy of different points of view. A third would be for the Commonwealth to lower the political stakes and assign officials to develop a workable model that can be applied incrementally.

And that’s without even mentioning climate change.

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