Between 1990 and 2004, emissions from the Australian energy sector grew by 38%. Other developed nations that are parties to Kyoto had a rise of only 5%. Emissions across all sectors will have risen 16% between the time John Howard first took over in 1996 and 2010 (the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol). This is double our Kyoto target. But unlike other countries, our target emissions were actually a rise on 1990 levels. Our crafty former leader claimed that a reduction in the then record levels of land clearing (mostly in Qld.) would be reduced, which helped tweak the figures.
The longer we avoid reducing our CO2 pollution, the greater the effort we’ll need later on. We’re currently on track to see emissions at least 27% higher than 1990 levels by 2050 instead of 60% lower.
Jill / Philip Gibbons ANU / Crikey
“Today’s global atmospheric carbon emissions average around 1.27 tonnes per person; in Australia the rate is 5.63 tonnes. In comparison the Earth’s current capacity to absorb carbon is 0.62 tonnes per capita, estimated to decrease to 0.32 tonnes by 2030. That means Australia’s present per capita emissions are 18 times the Earth’s carbon-sink capacity of 2030.”
David Spratt, Carbon Equity project, Dissent Winter 20.8.07