That said in-order to put my family first this federal election I will not be voting for one of the conservative parties.
For over 15 years I have been concerned about the environmental impact of our pollution. Freely available government data show that the temperatures in southern Australia have been increasing over the past 20 years. Last Saturday John Lamb on ABC radio stated that stone fruits are budding up to two weeks earlier than when he started in the industry. So in short I believe we are influencing our climate with our high carbon dioxide (and methane) emissions, and need to do something to reduce them.
As you should be aware the Liberal Leader Tony Abbot has stated he does not believe in climate change and so I was hoping that Family First would give a conservative view on politics with a responsible position on climate.
As I normally do I was looking at the Senate Group Voting tickets from the AEC website. It was there that I discovered that Family First were giving their preferences to "The Climate Sceptics" in 3rd position.
I thought I would ask their lead Senate candidate Bob Day (my local Liberal candidate in the last federal election) what his views on the topic of climate change were.
Bellow is our email conversation.
From: David Folland
Sent: Sunday, 1 August 2010 2:38 PM
Dear Mr Day, I was just looking at the allocation of preferences at the next federal election and noticed that you put the climate
sceptics third. Does that mean that despite the research of thousands of climate scientists you do not believe that human pollution is causing damage to our environment and so chancing the climate?
On 02/08/2010, at 10:04 PM, "Bob Day"
Regarding climate change, Family First believes the government should:
1. Tell us what it is going to cost to reduce greenhouse gas emissions ie the impact on the average family in terms of electricity
cost rises, fuel costs, and housing costs. Reports are that an ETS or Carbon Tax will substantially increase the cost of living for the average family.
2. Hold a Royal Commission to investigate why so many reputable scientists do not accept that human activity is causing climate change.
These scientists point to evidence that the earth was much warmer many hundreds of years ago (before CO2 emissions started to rise) than it is today.
Claims that 'there is a scientific consensus' and 'the science is settled' are clearly not accurate.
3. Delay introducing any legislation until the rest of the world agrees to do the same. China and India have made it abundantly clear that they will not scale down their huge program of electrification which will be based on coal-fired power stations. The CO2 emissions from these two countries alone will exceed the rest of the world put together.
Australia represents only about 1% of the world's emissions. It is pointless Australia acting alone.
Accordingly, Family First opposes the introduction of a Carbon Tax or Emissions Trading Tax on Australian families until these questions are answered.
David, I am not an expert on climate change but I do have a science background and can attest that the primary or underlining principle of scientific research is not to prove something to be true but to prove something to be false. In other words, science is, by definition, fundamentally sceptical.
I trust this is of assistance.
Thank you again for your email
From: David Folland
Sent: Monday, 2 August 2010 11:13 PM
To: Bob Day
Subject: Re: Environment
Dear Mr Day,
1. Do you believe that a decade long drought brought about by climate change could substantially increase the cost of living for the average family? What is the value of an environment?
Have you heard of insurance? It involves a small cost now to prevent a huge expense latter.
2. There are many issues of debate about climate science however the general consensus of Climate Scientists is that humans have influenced our atmospheric chemistry in such a way as to warm the planet and so change the climate. The BOM data for Australian temperature records suggest that southern Australia is warmer in the past decade than when records started. Many of the people who are arguing against human induced climate change have not studied climate science. The IPCC a
group of thousands of distinguished climate scientists have stated that the evidence supports the theory that we are warming the planet and altering the climate.
3. India has introduced a coal tax, we would not be acting alone, New Zealand and many European countries are putting a price on carbon. Why can Australia not be world leaders on this issue?
I am also not a climate scientist but I am a high school science teacher who has been reading about this issue in scientific papers for over 15 years and the general pattern of temperature rise over the last 30 years is what has been warned about by climate scientists.
I would have thought that protecting our environment was a way of putting our Family First.
P.s. You didn't answer my question. Do you believe that human pollution can influence our environment and so cause climate change?
On 03/08/2010, at 9:33 AM, "Bob Day"
David, I'm receiving over 100 emails a day. I like to reply to all of them. I've given 2 long and considered answers to your questions (IT, Climate Change). I'll try and get to your latest one if I can. Bob Day
This response has still not come. I believe this shows that If we want to have a stable environment for our children to grow up in, that we CAN NOT vote for either Liberals or Family First. With the Labour party being less committed to doing something at this election than the last I think that even though I disagree with some of their "Progressive policies" I may have to put Greens first, at least in the Senate to ensure that something gets done about our environment. If only we had a party that was socially conservative and environmentally responsible, not reprehensible.