February 15, 2011


Letters to the Editor and other People Speak


Climate questions

OUR new Climate Commissioner, Tim Flannery, says that his role is to provide accurate information to the public about climate change.
(Letters, 15/2).
Perhaps he might start by answering the two most critical questions that taxpayers have in mind.
The first is how many degrees of warming will be averted by a cut in Australian CO2 emissions of, say, 20 per cent by 2020. Second, what extra costs, including all flow-through costs, will be imposed on an average family by the taxation strategy that is aimed at producing such a cut. Available estimates indicate that the answers to these questions are: (i) less than one one-thousandth of a degree Celsius by 2020; and (ii) more than $2000 per family of four per year.
Australian battlers, on whom the extra costs will impinge the most, are unlikely to view this as a good public policy option, and if Flannery has more policy-favourable figures in mind, then now might be a good time to share them with us.
Bob Carter, Townsville, Qld

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