Showing posts with label climate change. Show all posts
Showing posts with label climate change. Show all posts

Sunday, 3 January 2021

One of the looming threats to NSW forests in 2021

Hunter Energy Limited, formerly Hunter Energy Pty Ltd, was registered on 6 March 2018.

Its current spokespersons appear to believe that cutting down native forest to supply a power plant with biomass is a “closed loop” with no cilmate or environmental consequences.

However, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration; “although the CO2 released from biofuel or bioenergy combustion is assumed to be fully accounted for by the uptake of carbon during the growth of the feedstock used to produce the biofuels or bioenergy…..analysts have debated whether the increased use of biomass energy may result in a loss of terrestrial carbon stocks and foregone future sequestration by natural vegetation. The initial loss of carbon stocks in natural vegetation cleared to grow biomass feedstocks and the foregone future removal of CO2 are not captured in energy sector emissions.”

Dependent on species, it would probably take 25 years for a single tree to store est. 400 to 544 kilograms of carbon dioxide. Eucalypts reaching 8 meters in height might store up to 1 tonne of carbon

So when one is cut down after 25 years and burnt that’s basically how much initial greenhouse gas emissions are released back into the atmosphere from the tree itself – where emissions will remain until 25 years later when hopefully another tree has survived long enough to store a similar amount of carbon.

Multiple that first tree by the up to 1.8 to 3 billion 25 year-old trees estimated to be annually required to feed Hunter Energy’s proposed Redbank Power Station fuelled by biomass and, one begins to see that biomass-generated power is not a closed system at all – it is simply one predicated on at best naked hope and at worst a complete denial of climate change realities regarding Australian native forest tree growth.

Nevertheless, the Berejiklian Coalition Government under blackmail threat by Deputy-Premier and Nationals MLA for Monaro John Barilaro, will push ahead with legislation which allows biomass logging in north east New South Wales.

Logging which would lead inevitably to the destruction of our remaining closed-cover mature native forests.

In this Barilaro will be aided and abetted by NSW Nationals MLA Chris Gulaptis and Nationals Federal MP for Page Kevin Hogan.


According to Wikipedia:

On 5 October 2013, Redbank Energy’s wholly owned subsidiary Redbank Project Pty Ltd (Redbank Project) was notified by its secured lenders of the appointment of receivers to Redbank Project, Redbank Construction Pty Ltd and the shares in Redbank Project held by Redbank Project Holdco Pty Ltd,[5] with debts of $192 million.[6]

In Oct 2014, receivers KordaMentha announced immediate closure of the Plant with its remaining assets including the turbine, generator and plant and equipment to be sold.[7]

On 17 September 2015 Redbank Energy (REL) announced that its wholly owned subsidiary, Biogreen Energy Pty Limited (Biogreen), had purchased the land, plant and equipment and water rights owned by Redbank Project for $5 million, but that it intended "to commence the work to raise the funds necessary to recommence the operation of the Redbank Power Station".[8][9]

On 25 August 2016 Redbank Energy issued the following statement to shareholders via the ASX. "In response to shareholder enquiries, Redbank Energy Limited (ASX: AEJ) (REL) wishes to provide the following market update. Unfortunately, REL will be removed from the ASX official list on 29 August 2016. The immediate catalyst for delisting will be the non-payment of the 2016/17 ASX annual listing fee, which falls due on 27 August 2016. The reason for REL not paying the 2016/17 ASX listing fee is because REL will automatically be suspended on 9 October 2016 due to continual suspension." Redbank was subsequently delisted from the close of trading on Monday, 29 August 2016 pursuant to Listing rule 17.15.[10]

On 10 April 2018, Fairfax Media announced that the power plant could be restarted in Q1 2019 to provide cheap off-the-grid power for blockchain mining applications.[11]

Financial Review, 26 May 2020:

The Redbank Power Station in NSW, formerly owned by ASX-listed Redbank Energy and its predecessors Alinta Energy and Babcock & Brown Power, is set for a comeback to the ASX-boards.

This time Redbank will be housed in a new company called Hunter Energy, which was set up by a bunch of former Australian Power & Gas execs, and acquired Redbank in 2018. (It is run by Richard Poole, a former investment banker and Cascade Coal director).

Hunter Energy has turned the dormant Redbank into a "green energy power plant", according to marketing materials in front of potential investors, able to produce enough energy to power 200,000 to 250,000 homes using waste biomass for fuel.

Hunter Energy wants to switch the plant on by the end of this year to provide what it says would be around the clock and reliable baseload power with zero net emissions….

Financial Review, 26 May 2020:

The Redbank Power Station in NSW, formerly owned by ASX-listed Redbank Energy and its predecessors Alinta Energy and Babcock & Brown Power, is set for a comeback to the ASX-boards.

This time Redbank will be housed in a new company called Hunter Energy, which was set up by a bunch of former Australian Power & Gas execs, and acquired Redbank in 2018. (It is run by Richard Poole, a former investment banker and Cascade Coal director).

Hunter Energy has turned the dormant Redbank into a "green energy power plant", according to marketing materials in front of potential investors, able to produce enough energy to power 200,000 to 250,000 homes using waste biomass for fuel.

Hunter Energy wants to switch the plant on by the end of this year to provide what it says would be around the clock and reliable baseload power with zero net emissions….

Echo NetDaily, 26 November 2020:

As glaciers, ice sheets, and the poles continue to melt due to the human impacts on the environment it is bordering on criminal for the Australian and NSW governments to be supporting the increase of CO2 in the atmosphere, let alone clearing and burning trees for biomass energy production.

According to studies being done on the East Antarctic Ice Sheet reported in it is becoming clear ‘that increasingly warming climate, as expected for the near future, the East Antarctic Ice Sheet could be less stable than previously thought’.

The future melting of polar ice sheets and the associated rise in global sea level as a consequence of climate change will have a substantial impact on low-elevation coastal areas.’

Yet the Federal government is promoting a gas led COVID-19 recovery, the NSW government has facilitated the approval of the Narrabri Gas Project, and the biomass Redbank Power Station near Singleton appears to be planning a reboot.

The imminent rebooting of the mothballed Redbank Power Station (near Singleton) with north-east NSW’s forests will make it Australia’s most polluting power station and an existential threat to the future of our children and wildlife,’ according to the North East Forest Alliance (NEFA).

According to NEFA Hunter Energy is currently seeking expressions of interest for timber from across north-east NSW to fuel their Redbank Power Station, with plans to restart the facility in mid-2021 fed by native forests to make it one of world’s ten biggest biomass power plants.

The claims are that it will power 200,000 homes, which was identified in 2017 North Coast Residues Report as requiring one million tonnes of biomass to be taken from north-east NSW’s forests and plantations each year, with 60 per cent of this coming from private forests,’ said NEFA spokesperson Dailan Pugh.

This is sheer madness as burning this volume will release some 1.8 million tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere each year to fuel climate heating, increased droughts, heatwaves, and more intense bushfires, while increasing forest degradation and hastening species extinctions.

The community needs to urgently speak up to stop the NSW and Commonwealth Governments from allowing this environmental disaster,’ Mr Pugh said.

NEFA have said that biomass is even more polluting than coal and releases up to 50 per cent more CO2 to generate the equivalent amounts of energy.

Then there’s all the CO2 released by machines during logging and in hauling the wood from across north-east NSW to Singleton,’ said Susie Russel from NEFA.

It will be a nightmare for rural communities with thousands of extra trucks plying narrow rural roads, crossing small deteriorating bridges, passing through peaceful villages and then roaring down the Pacific Highway to Redbank.

This will be subsidized by taxpayers under the pretense that burning trees is renewable energy as the trees will regrow and decades or centuries later take up the carbon released by burning them.

We are in a climate emergency and cannot afford to spew millions of tonnes of additional carbon into the atmosphere at a time when we need to be urgently reducing atmospheric carbon, and we need to leave our trees alive to do it as they are the only viable means of carbon capture and storage,’ Ms Russell said.

Mr Pugh continued, ‘Our suffering forest wildlife will be impacted most severely as forest degradation skyrockets with all those previously uneconomic trees taken……

NEFA have said that biomass is even more polluting than coal and releases up to 50 per cent more CO2 to generate the equivalent amounts of energy. [my yellow highlighting]

Hunter Energy, retrieved 28 December 2020:

Upon re-start, Redbank will be one of the largest green baseload renewable energy providers in NSW and the ONLY existing facility capable of providing urgently required green 24/7 baseload power, adding to grid stability.


Wednesday, 23 December 2020

Australia's unique plant species declining in population numbers faster than mammals and birds

The Conversation, excerpt, 16 December 2020:

Plants, such as WA’s Endangered Foote’s grevillea, make our landscape unique.
Andrew Crawford / WA Department of Biodiversity Conservation and Attractions

Australia’s plant species are special - 84% are found nowhere else in the world. The index shows that over about 20 years up to 2017, Australia’s threatened plant populations declined by 72%. This is faster than mammals (which declined by about a third), and birds (which declined by about half). Populations of trees, shrubs, herbs and orchids all suffered roughly similar average declines (65-75%) over the two decades.

Of the 112 species in the index, 68% are critically endangered or endangered and at risk of extinction if left unmanaged. Some 37 plant species have gone extinct since records began, though many others are likely to have been lost before scientists even knew they existed. Land clearing, changed fire regimes, grazing by livestock and feral animals, plant diseases, weeds and climate change are common causes of decline.

Vulnerable plant populations reduced to small areas can also face unique threats. For example, by the early 2000s Foote’s grevillea (Grevillea calliantha) had dwindled to just 27 wild plants on road reserves. Road maintenance activities such as mowing and weed spraying became a major threat to its survival. For other species, like the button wrinklewort, small populations can lead to inbreeding and a lack of genetic diversity.... 

Threatened plant conservation in fire-prone landscapes is challenging if a species’ relationship with fire is not known. Many Australian plant species require particular intensities or frequencies of burns for seed to be released or germinate. But since European settlement, fire patterns have been interrupted, causing many plant populations to decline. 

Three threatened native pomaderris shrubs on the NSW South Coast are a case in point. Each of them – Pomaderris adnata, P. bodalla and P. walshii – have failed to reproduce for several years and are now found only in a few locations, each with a small number of plants. 

Experimental trials recently revealed that to germinate, the seeds of these pomaderris species need exposure to hot-burning fires (or a hot oven). However they are now largely located in areas that seldom burn. This is important knowledge for conservation managers aiming to help wild populations persist.... 

A quarter of the species in the threatened plant index are orchids. Orchids make up 17% of plant species listed nationally as threatened, despite comprising just 6% of Australia’s total plant species. 

The endangered coloured spider-orchid (Caladenia colorata) is pollinated only by a single thynnine wasp, and relies on a single species of mycorrhizal fungi to germinate in the wild. 

Yet even for such a seemingly difficult species, conservation success is possible. In one project, scientists from the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria, aided by volunteers, identified sites where the wasp was still naturally present. More than 800 spider orchid plants were then propagated in a lab using the correct symbiotic fungus, then planted at four sites. These populations are now considered to be self-sustaining. 

In the case of Foote’s grevillea, a plant translocation program has established 500 plants at three new sites, dramatically improving the species’ long-term prospects.

The coloured spider orchid, found in South Australia and Victoria, is endangered. 
Noushka Reiter/Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria

Saturday, 19 December 2020

Quote of the Week


"The global transition to zero emissions has negative implications for Australia’s important coal and LNG exports. The border taxes that the EU and US will apply to carbon-intensive goods will compound the loss. Join the developed countries of the northern hemisphere on the climate and energy transition, and we gain far more from the new zero-emissions economy than we lose from the old fossil energy. Investment in the new zero-emissions economy can provide much of the stimulus required for Australia’s own movement to full employment." [Professorial research fellow at the University of Melbourne Ross Garnaut, writing in the Financial Review, 11 December 2020]

Tuesday, 15 December 2020

As we near the end of 2020 this message needs to be acted upon......



Monday, 14 December 2020

News report on U.N. climate summit to which the Bobbsey Twins, Scott Morrison and Donald Trump, were not invited


Australian PM Morrison (left) & US President Trump (right)
IMAGE: The Conversation

The Guardian, 13 December 2020:

Governments around the world should all declare a state of climate emergency until the world has reached net zero CO2 emissions, the UN secretary general, António Guterres, has told a summit of world leaders.

At least 38 countries have already declared such a state of emergency, often owing to their vulnerability to the impacts of climate breakdown, which are already being felt.

Can anybody still deny that we are facing a dramatic emergency?” Guterres said on Saturday. “I urge all others to follow.”

Declaring an emergency would require countries to step up their actions on greenhouse gas emissions urgently. An increasing number of governments have a target to reach net zero emissions by around the mid-century, but few have detailed plans on how to get there.

Many countries are also pouring money into high-CO2 activities as they strive to recover from the coronavirus crisis and recession. Guterres noted that G20 countries were spending 50% more in their stimulus packages on fossil fuels and CO2-intensive sectors than they were on low-CO2 energy.

This is unacceptable,” he told the online Climate Ambition Summit, co-hosted by the UN, the UK and France. “The trillions of dollars needed for Covid recovery is money that we are borrowing from future generations. This is a moral test. We cannot use these resources to lock in policies that burden future generations with a mountain of debt on a broken planet.”

More than 70 world leaders, civil society activists, business chiefs and city mayors are attending the Climate Ambition Summit, which marks five years since the landmark Paris climate agreement.

Under the Paris agreement, countries are bound to keep global temperature rises well below the 2C above pre-industrial levels that scientists regard as the outer limit of safety, with an aspiration to limit global heating to 1.5C, which should avoid the worst of the ravages of climate breakdown.

However, the commitments to reduce emissions that countries made at Paris were insufficient, and would result in catastrophic heating of more than3C. The agreement contains a ratchet mechanism by which nations must update their commitments every five years. The first deadline is now looming, on 31 December, and at Saturday’s summit world leaders are supposed to come forward with strengthened plans, called nationallydetermined contributions (NDCs), to cut emissions by 2030.

The UK has come forward with a goal of cutting emissions by 68% by 2030 compared with 1990 levels. The EU on Friday confirmed its pledge of a 55% cut by 2030.

Many other countries, including China, Japan and South Korea, have come forward with longer-term goals of reaching net zero emissions by 2050 or 2060…..

The Morrison Government position on climate change mitigation, as explained by Juice Media:

Wednesday, 9 December 2020

IUCN report finds climate change is a threat to 69 per cent of Australia's 16 World Heritage sites, including the Great Barrier Reef, more than double the global trend of 33 per cent


ABC News, 4 December 2020:

Mark Graham takes hope from pockets of Gondwana rainforests regenerating after the bushfires.(Supplied: Drew Hopper)

Ecologist Mark Graham has studied Australia's Gondwana rainforests for decades and, after years of drought and bushfires, says things have never looked so dire.

"To bear witness to the loss of some of these ecosystems . . . it's a very upsetting thing to observe," he said.

The International Union for the Conservation of Nature [IUCN] this week rated Gondwana rainforests a "significant concern". In 2017 the same report rated the forests as "good, with some concern".

The IUCN is the official advisor on nature to the UNESCO World Heritage Committee.

The report also found climate change was a threat to 69 per cent of Australia's 16 World Heritage sites, including the Great Barrier Reef, more than double the global trend of 33 per cent.

Nightcap National Park, in northern NSW, is one of the Gondwana rainforests devastated by fire a year ago.(Supplied: Darcy Grant)

Burnt rainforests 'still suffering'

The Gondwana subtropical rainforests stretch from the Hunter region in NSW to south-east Queensland and were entered on the World Heritage List in 1986, with extensions in 1994.

The 41 national parks and reserves ranging from 10 hectares to 102,712 hectares contain more than 200 rare or threatened plant species and have been compared with the Galapagos Islands in terms of global importance.

Mark Graham said more than a year after major bushfires, some parts of the rainforests were still suffering.

"There are definitely [some of] these really ancient forests that have burnt, and a year or more on there's very little, if any, life in them," he said.

"Thankfully, in some of our fire grounds, there is recovery occurring."

'Other threats increasing'

Mr Graham said the real concern now was more fires that might further reduce the size of the rainforests.

The IUCN report points out that while management has so far been effective in addressing challenges, further management responses will be required to address increasing threats, particularly those posed by bushfires as well as invasive species, pathogens, and climate change.

"There is wide recognition that considerable conservation actions will be required," the report says

"However, there is the lingering prospect that the catastrophe is a clear sign of the impact of climate change on weather patterns, and that these changes will not be reversed easily."…….

The Sydney Morning Herald, 6 December 2020:

The 3 billion animals estimated to have been killed, injured or seen their habitat destroyed by the summer fires is now understood to have included 143 million mammals, 181 million birds, 51 million frogs and 2.46 billion reptiles.

The toll includes an estimated 40 million possums and gliders caught in the path of fires; more than 36 million antechinuses, dunnarts, and other insectivorous marsupials; 5.5 million bettongs, bandicoots, quokkas, and potoroos; 5 million kangaroos and wallabies; 1.1 million wombats and 114,000 echidnas.

It is believed 60,000 koalas were killed, injured or lost habitat, with the worst losses on Kangaroo Island where 40,000 were killed or harmed in some way.

About 11,000 koalas were hit in Victoria and 8000 in NSW according to a new report into the impact of the fires on native wildlife, which confirms an earlier overall estimate but provides far more detail about the losses.

Professor Chris Dickman of the University of Sydney, who oversaw the research on behalf of the Worldwide Fund for Nature Australia, said the impact on reptiles was so high because they live in such great densities in some of the worst affected areas, with small lizards such as skinks reaching densities of 1800 per hectare.

Researchers mapped the path of the 15,000 fires over 11.46 million hectares of the total 19 million hectares that burnt over the summer, and married it with existing data about animal densities in the areas hit.

They did not directly estimate numbers of animals killed because research about how different animals may survive fires is limited, and the factors that contribute to impact are varied. For example some species can flee faster and others are more resilient at surviving later in a burnt landscape.....

Thursday, 3 December 2020

Individuals and communities in New South Wales are feeling the emotional and social stress of two horror years in a row


One can hear the stress, fatigue, sadness, helplessness and sometimes despair behind a great many of the tweets and posts on Australian social media - especially from those living in regional areas around the country.

One NSW Labor MP recently observed to me that so many people are now in a dark place.

So sadly, this article comes as no surprise…..

The Daily Telegraph, 1 December 2020:

It was thrust into the national spotlight when 33 people tragically lost their lives in last year’s deadly bushfires. But the NSW south coast holds another unenviable title — the suicide capital of NSW.

In a grim reminder of the mental health battle facing our state, the area from Bateman’s Bay to the Victorian border lost 68 people to suicide between 2015 and 2019.

This is compared to the 33 lives lost to the bushfires which ravaged the region from September 2019 through to January 2020.

Analysis of Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) data reveals the south coast has a suicide rate of 21.5 per 100,000 people — the highest rate in NSW and an increase on the previous year.

Taree, Inverell, Yass and the Clarence Valley are the next worst affected. “We are seeing in the coastal regions the cumulative effects of the bushfires, social dislocation and the consequent effects of further trauma through COVID-19,” Professor Ian Hickie of the University of Sydney’s Brain and Mind Centre said. “These are the areas where there are already economic impacts, disruption and now there are additional effects. We talk about this idea of stacked distress.” The figures also reveal a yawning gap between suicide rates in the bush and Sydney, where the overwhelming majority of mental health professionals live.

Gosford and Wyong on the Central Coast are the second and third-worst areas in Greater Sydney, behind the Sydney CBD which has a suicide rate of 14.6 deaths per 100,000 people.

Yet there are 27 other rural and regional locations with a higher suicide rate. Youth mental health expert Professor Patrick McGorry said the statistics “are so shocking — it’s like a war zone”.

There’s more than 15,500 people who have died in that five-year period (nationwide). If the cause of death were something different — like drownings or car accidents — it would be in people’s faces and on the front page,” he said.

Lifeline: 13 11 14

[my yellow highlighting]

By January 2019 drought affected 99.8 per cent of New South Wales and most of the state was still experiencing drought in January 2020.

The devastating 2019-20 bushfire season commenced early in regional New South Wales. The Clarence Valley fires started at the beginning of June 2019.

The COVID-19 pandemic reached New South Wales on 15 January 2020 and first appeared in the NSW Northern Rivers region on or about 16 March 2020. 

In New South Wales in October 2020 unemployment stood at 6.5% and the number of people in the state who were unemployed for periods ranging from up to 4 weeks to 52 weeks and under 104 weeks rose by 148,300 individuals between October 2019 and October 2020.

By July 2020 the employment growth rate stood at 0.0% to -2.4% across the NSW Northern Rivers region.

Fire, drought, fear of infection, public health orders and economic recession significantly affected how coastal communities have lived their lives in the last two years.

According to the federal Australian Institute of Health and Wellbeing:

The newly established New South Wales Suicide Monitoring System, launched by the NSW Government on 9 November 2020, reported 673 suspected suicides in NSW from 1 January to 30 September 2020. This is similar to the 672 suspected suicides reported for the same period in 2019 (NSW Ministry of Health 2020). Three-quarters of suspected suicides in 2020 were among males and more than half of all suspected suicides occurred among those aged between 25 and 55 (NSW Ministry of Health 2020).

Again, according to the same source, in New South Wales in 2018 there were a total 899 deaths registered as suicide and in 2019 at total of 937 deaths registered as suicide.


The number of registered deaths in 2019 exceeded the 22 year high of 1997 which saw 935 deaths registered as suicide.

The rate of NSW ambulance attendances for mental heath issues in 2019 was 114.3 persons per 100,000 population.

In 2018-2019 a total of 297 males and 388 females were hospitalised for self-harm on the NSW North Coast.

The rate of NSW Northern Rivers hospitalisations for self-harm by females in 2018-2019 ranged from Tweed Valley 181.5 persons per 100,000 population, Clarence Valley 128.3 persons, Richmond Valley-Hinterland 169.6 persons, and Richmond Valley-Coastal 104.2 persons. There are as yet no published figures for 2020.

Tuesday, 24 November 2020

Erosion continues along Byron Bay coastline in 2020


Byron Bay storm erosion 31 July 2020 from BluecoastConsultingEngineers on Vimeo.

Echo NetDaily, 18 November 2020:

The state government is set to install sand bags at Clarkes Beach to protect the Beach Byron Bay cafe and Whites Cottage from the coastal erosion that has decimated the popular strip.

But it says the bags are just a temporary measure to give the building owners time to ‘reconfigure’ their premises, and that the cafe owner has been told to prepare for ‘future retreat’.

Management strategies were discussed at an urgent meeting held last month by the various state and local agencies who have responsibility for the Clarkes Beach area, including Council, Crown Lands and the Environment Department.

Clarkes has been severely affected by erosion over the past 12 to 18 months, with tonnes of sand stripped away exposing a rock shelf beneath. The beach is littered with uprooted pandanus trees, and the eroded dune line is now within metres of the Beach Byron Bay cafe.

There has also been further exposure of Aboriginal middens……

Representatives from a number of the agencies also expressed their views about the causes of the erosion; most were generally in agreement. This included an expert from the NSW Environment Department’s Sciences Group, who said the erosion was owing to a general reduction in the frequency of southerly swells, which played an important role in bringing sand to Clarkes Beach and Main Beach.

At the same time, there was an increase in the frequency of east and/or north east swells – patterns that have the effect of taking sand away from the beaches.

The net result over time is that the shoreline is undergoing a long-term trend of landward recession…’ the expert reportedly told the meeting.

Shoreline recession will also be influenced by sea level rise. An erosion period is occurring at the moment with no way to estimate when it will end. History tells us that the shorelines will eventually accrete [gather more sand]; however, when this will occur there is no way to know’.

[my yellow highlighting]

The Guardian, 20 October 2020:

Australia’s famous Byron Bay beach has been closed to swimmers and surfers as authorities carry out emergency sandbagging to prevent further damaging erosion.

Escalating erosion at Main Beach and Clarkes Beach in the northern New South Wales town has left a drop of several metres from the top of crumbling dunes down to the beach.

Max Pendergast, a 77-year-old local who has lived and surfed at Byron Bay his whole life, told Guardian Australia he had never seen the beaches in a worse condition.

I’ve been through quite a few big cyclones, I’ve seen the sea come over the six-metre high dunes, but what’s happening now is an etching away of the beach,” he said.

It looks pretty ugly right now, because a lot of the beach is just gone. It’s very bad.”

Pendergast said he noticed the beach deteriorate significantly over the past six months, and said he was concerned that if erosion continued waves would threaten units and the road along the beachfront.

Not that long ago it was beautiful white sand all the way down to the water, but now it’s just rock, it really has eaten it away......

Thursday, 5 November 2020

AUSTRALIA: the 13th Climate of the Nation annual research report was published in October 2020

The Australia Institute released its Climate of the Nation 2020 annual research report this month.

This is the third year the Institute has published this research, the ten years previous to 2018 the survey was published by the Climate Institute.

The quantitative survey was conducted on the YouGov Galaxy Online Omnibus between 14 July and 22 July 2020 and the sample comprised 1,998 Australians aged 18 years and older distributed throughout Australia.

While the qualitative survey comprised of four online focus groups were carried out on 31 August and 1 September 2020. The groups were conducted over Zoom with 21 participants in total. The target group was female swing voters from the federal electorates of Lindsay and Macquarie in NSW, and Lilley and Petrie in Queensland who believe in human caused climate change.

Key Findings In "Climate of the Nation 2020":

80% of Australians think we are already experiencing the impact of climate change

82% of Australians are concerned that climate change will result in more bushfires

83% of Australians support a phase-out of coalfired power stations

79% of Australians rank solar in their top three preferred energy sources

40x is the factor by which Australians overestimate gas industry employment

45x is the factor by which Australians overestimate the oil and gas industry’s contribution to Commonwealth revenue

65% of Australians support the introduction of a levy on Australia’s fossil fuel exports to help pay for climate disasters

65% of Australians think the Australian Government should stop new coal mines

71% think Australia should be a world leader in finding solutions to climate change

72% of Australians believe mining companies should be liable for any land or water contamination caused by fracking

74% of Australians believe governments should plan to phase out coal mining and transition to other industries

68% of Australians support a national target for net zero emissions by 2050

77% of Australians agree tackling climate change creates opportunities in clean energy for new jobs and investment

75% of Australians would consider reducing electricity during times of high demand if they were paid to do so

12% of Australians would prefer Australia’s economic recovery to be primarily powered by gas, compared to 59% who prefer it to be powered by investment in renewables

The Australia Institute: Climate of the Nation 2020 research report by clarencegirl on Scribd