Thursday, 29 July 2010

Public Forum: “Meet the candidates” Community Climate Forum for the Federal election 2010

Lighter Footprints Forum

Citizen’s assembly in Kooyong last night rejected both Labor and Coalition policies

Over 200 people attended a forum to meet the candidates in the federal seat of Kooyong last night.

One question from the audience in the Q&A type forum and hosted by Walkley Award winning Age journalist Liz Minchin asked people to raise their hands if they thought Labor, the Coalition or Greens were doing enough on climate.

While there was a handful of support for Coalition policies, ironically there was not a single supporter among the crowd for the current Labor approach including the proposal on a citizen’s assembly announced by the Prime Minister this week. Around 70% supported the Greens proposals for climate action.

Three candidates for the lower house seat, one Senator and two Senate candidates formed the panel that faced tough questioning from both their host and the audience.

Josh Frydenberg (Liberal candidate for Kooyong), Steve Hurd (ALP candidate), Des Benson (Greens candidate), Scott Ryan (Liberal Senator), Richard Di Natale (Senate candidate for Greens), and Antony Thow (Senate candidate for ALP) attended the forum organised by community group Lighter Footprints.

Carolyn Ingvarson, Convenor of Lighter Footprints, said the response revealed the level of dissatisfaction in the community on the climate proposals from the major parties in the federal election campaign.

“This response supports the findings of our report on community attitudes earlier this year. This showed people are very disillusioned with the quality and nature of the debate in political circles, and the focus on political point-scoring rather than appropriate action. Those who do understand the profound implications indicated by the science want to see action right now,” Ms Ingvarson said.

“It is also interesting to see the direct response of the community to the proposals by the political parties. If these potential politicians take away the knowledge that an open meeting in a conservative area wants much more action on climate change - that can only be good.”

For copies of the report from the Rewrite the Future: Climate Conversations forum, click here.
Media enquiries or for further information, call Carolyn Ingvarson: 0411 115 186.


Des Benson, Greens candidate for Kooyong

Richard Di Natale, Greens senate candidate

Steve Hurd, Labor candidate for Kooyong

Josh Frydenberg, Liberal candidate for Kooyong

Anthony Thow, Labor senate candidate

Senator Scott Ryan, Liberal

Friday, 16 July 2010

“Meet the candidates” Community Climate Forum for the Federal election 2010

What: “Meet the candidates” Community Climate Forum for the Federal election 2010
When: Wednesday 28 July @ 7.00pm
Where: Chandelier room, Hawthorn town hall, 360 Burwood Rd, Hawthorn
Who: Candidates for Kooyong and a senator from each major party
Entry: $5 donation.

Age journalist Liz Minchin, a Walkely award winner and co-author of a book on climate change Screw Light Bulbs, will run a Q&A session that will put climate change policies of the major parties under the microscope and allow the public and candidates to quiz one another. This should prove both entertaining and illuminating and we are very pleased to have her services..

The battle for the senate is crucial for passing climate change legislation so we are particularly pleased to have the senate candidates who will be fighting it out for Victorian senate positions in attendance.

Please put this date in your diary and come with friends and neighbours to demonstrate that this electorate does care strongly about climate change and that we want real action.

The Kooyong candidates attending are:
  • Josh Frydenberg (Liberal)
  • Steve Hurd (ALP)
  • Des Benson (Greens)
The three senate candidates attending are:
  • Richard Di Natale (Greens).
  • Antony Thow (ALP)
  • Scott Ryan (Liberal)

Thursday, 8 July 2010

Report clears "climategate" scientists

There have been a few blog posts about the report by Sir Muir Russell (.pdf file) into the so-called "climategate" affair. (This controversy has gone over the horizon somewhat; it all happened last November when email messages that were hacked into from the university computer network were released to the media. The messages were supposed to show that scientists at the university had ignored or suppressed data that disproved the anthropogenic climate change hypothesis.)

From Andre Revkin's post on Dot Earth:
"The Independent Climate Change Email Review is finished and, within its constrained mandate, has cleared climate scientists and administrators at the University of East Anglia of claims of malfeasance rising out of the contents of folders of e-mail messages and files extracted from computers there and posted around the Web last November. Two other inquiries with slightly different focal points also cleared the scientists and school."

From Gavin and Mike's post on RealClimate:
"The main issue is that [the report authors] conclude that the rigour and honesty of the Climate Research Unit scientists is not in doubt [ ... ] Secondly, they conclude that none of the emails cast doubt on the integrity and conclusions of the IPCC, again, something we have been saying since the beginning. They also conclude as we did that there was no ‘corruption’ of the peer-review process. Interestingly, they independently analysed the public domain temperature data themselves to ascertain whether the could validate the CRU record. They managed this in two days, somewhat undermining claims that the CRU temperature data was somehow manipulated inappropriately. (Note that this exercise has been undertaken by a number of people since November – all of which show that the CRU results are robust). All in all, none of the various accusations and insinuations that have been floating around the blogosphere have been sustained."

The report has received some coverage in the local media, but with nowhere near the same fervour as the original allegations. Mud sticks.

Thursday, 1 July 2010

Co2 and communication

A couple of recent articles:
  • Climate control: is Co2 really in charge? Well-written article from New Scientist takes as its starting point apparent inconsistencies in the relationship shown to exist between atmospheric CO2 levels and warming (i.e. high CO2 leads to high temperatures). Good information about methods to determine previous CO2 levels and climate sensitivity.
  • Scientists from Mars face public from Venus. NYT article about the challenges facing scientists communicating with the public. Will more information alone change people's attitudes? Or do scientists have to bone up on social science to learn about how people form and hold beliefs?