Emissions trading legislation, such as the “Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme” (CPRS) bill that is currently before parliament, rests upon the assumption that human greenhouse emissions, especially carbon dioxide, (i) are pollutants, and (ii) are causing dangerous global warming. Neither of these assumptions is supported by empirical evidence, and both have been under scientific challenge for many years by a large body of qualified and independent scientists.
Cognisant of these facts, Senator Steve Fielding has posed three direct questions to the Minister for Climate Change, Senator Penny Wong, in order to clarify whether or not evidence exists that human carbon dioxide emissions are causing dangerous global warming, as alleged by the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
The Minister’s replies to the Fielding questions drew heavily on IPCC arguments and advice. Parliament, in preparing to implement policy based upon the advice of an international political agency, has not hitherto had available to it a due diligence scientific assessment of the adequacy of the IPCC recommendations (Professor Garnaut’s extensive report being an economic and not a scientific analysis). As independent scientists, and at the request of Senator Fielding, we provide preliminary scientific due diligence in this document.
Our conclusions are (i) that whilst recent increases in greenhouse gases play a minor radiative role in global climate, no strong evidence exists that human carbon dioxide emissions are causing, or are likely to cause, dangerous global warming; (ii) that it is unwise for government environmental policy to be set based upon monopoly advice, and especially so when that monopoly is represented by an international political (not scientific) agency; and (iii) that the results of implementing emissions trading legislation will be so costly, troublingly regressive, socially divisive and environmentally ineffective that Parliament should defer consideration of the CPRS bill and institute a fully independent Royal Commission of enquiry into the evidence for and against a dangerous human influence on climate. We add, with respect to (iii), that the scientific community is now so polarised on the controversial issue of dangerous global warming that proper due diligence on the matter can only be achieved where competent scientific witnesses are cross-examined under oath and under strict rules of evidence.
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Note that one relevant paper has not been released into the public domain. It is the Minister’s personal letter to Senator Fielding on June 18th, which accompanied her written departmental replies to his questions. A number of the points made in that letter are analysed in Section D of the Due Diligence Report.