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Should NSF become a part of the next election debate?

Posted: Tue Apr 24, 2007 12:07 pm
by duane
Everyone is now aware of the scientific and anecdotal evidence for climate change and global warning.

Here in Australia, we are witnessing the drying up of the great Murray Darling Basin system, which up to this time has supplied nearly 70% of our food and fibre.

The Prime Minister's announcement that unless we get more rain into the MDB, 55,000 farmers will no longer be able to draw on water for agriculture. And the PM's response "we need to pray for rain".

The PM may not realise that it does'nt rain on deserts. The MDB has been drained and this loss of water in the whole system has meant that we have heated the surrounding landscape. That, together, with the removal of vast areas of natural vegetation, have been the two most important reasons for the calamitous situation we find ourselves in. We could potentially be witnessing the decline of civilisation as we know it.

And while Nero fiddles, Rome burns.

Peter Andrews has had a very simple message to restore the balance in the landscape, which can potentially be one solution to climate change and global warming. It is the one thing that has been missing from all the models on climate change and the one solution that can give us the greatest chance to turn things around. We keep forgetting the enormous importance of the water cycle and vegetation. Professor Wilhem Ripl claims this in his paper "Memorandum on Climate Change" and talks about the role of water cycles and plants have on moderating both local climate and global climates. He fully endorses what Peter Andrews has been saying.

We can surely all remember making a glass terrarium, filling it with charcoal, potting medium and plants, watering it and then putting the lid on it. It self-sustained itself, recycling both its water and nutrients. On a bigger scale, regions and countries and their landscapes operated on the same basis. Take the plants out of the terrarium and soon the whole thing dries up and desertifies. The broader landscape is no different to the terrarium only the scale is different.

The Australian continent went thru a similiar climate change aeons ago, as we are going thru today, when it broke away from Gondwanaland and lost its connection to all the rivers that connected it to Antartica. This left three great floodplains without any water supply and Nature needed to evolve a new landscape that contained the most unique efficient water and nutrient cycles on Earth, that provided settlers when they first arrived here 200 years ago with between 4,000 and 20,000 year old carbons in the soils. Today those same soils have between 2-4 years of carbon in them.

We will soon be publishing the Proceedings of the 1st International Workshop on Natural Sequence Farming on the website.
The findings and the papers offer solutions to our vexed questions.

I would implore everyone to keep the website in their favourites and view often.

The issues that confront us all are way above politics and political manipulations. Inclusivity and innovative solutions will be the beacon that shines forth and gives us the path to sustainability for current and future generations.

Posted: Sun May 20, 2007 2:50 am
by Angela Helleren
To quote duane -

The issues that confront us all are way above politics and political manipulations. Inclusivity and innovative solutions will be the beacon that shines forth and gives us the path to sustainability for current and future generations.

Sadly, we all have a bad habit of putting some things on the backburner until forced to act, often creating a much larger or more difficult task.

In this respect Politicans generally are no different. So we can't afford to wait for the political machine to compute the cost of doing nothing against, the cost to their popularity.

They need to be re educated in balancing the books.

Short term gains should not be at the expense of Australia's long term interests, financial or social, as both depend on a sustainable environment to meet full potential.

Saving a penny today may cost pounds tomorrow. (yes I'm old enough to remember the old currency :oops: )

While the Government has been stowing away our taxes, many have been calling for improvements to infrastructure, but one doesn't need to be a builder to know how important it is to have a stable base for any project to stand the test of time.

Posted: Mon May 21, 2007 11:12 am
by duane
Hi Angela,

Now is the time for action. It's the females in life who are the real achievers and get things done.

I would really love to see them become a real force as change agents in our society.

The time for talking is over....we ALL need to act NOW.

Posted: Wed Aug 22, 2007 11:20 am
by duane
In his four point plan for the future vision of the country if the PM Howard is re-elected he has said the priority No.3 will be to secure our water and reign in climate change.

Perhaps the NSF message is getting thru??

Posted: Tue Oct 09, 2007 9:22 am
by duane
Climate strategy a disaster: study

By Marian Wilkinson, Environment Editor
Courtesy of SMH September 28, 2007

THE Howard Government's strategy to deal with climate change - including support for "aspirational" goals rather than binding targets - could lead to catastrophic consequences in Australia, a study has found.

These include a threefold increase in heat-related deaths, the collapse of crop yields and a serious decline in river flows.

The scientific report, commissioned by the conservation group WWF, will be released today, as the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Alexander Downer, and the Environment Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, join ministers from the main polluting economies in Washington to discuss climate change negotiations.

The head of WWF, Greg Bourne, criticised the Government yesterday over its support for "aspirational" goals to reduce emissions. It promoted the goals at the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation meeting that resulted in the Sydney Declaration.

"The Australian Government continues to tinker while Rome burns," Mr Bourne said. "This report proves that it is contrary to the national interest for the Australian Government to negotiate any deal which is not intended to cut global emissions in half."

The report, Dangerous Aspirations: Beyond 3degreesC Warming in Australia, was written by Barrie Pittock, the former head of the CSIRO's Climate Impacts Group. Dr Pittock analysed a report by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics, released during APEC, that found that even with new technologies, greenhouse emissions were still projected to rise 60 per cent above 1990 levels by 2050 if deep cuts are not made. Dr Pittock said the latest report of the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change found this level of emissions would lead to a global temperature rise of between 3.2 and 4.9 degrees.

"On an even more serious note, such a rise in temperature would almost certainly trigger an unstoppable climate tipping point," Dr Pittock said. This is the point where climate change reaches a point of instability, causing the changes to magnify.

Mr Downer told the Washington meeting last night, that the APEC Sydney Declaration "shows that collective progress is possible" over climate change.

Australia backs the US President, George Bush, in pressing for a long-term "aspirational" goal to cut greenhouse gases that brings in developing nations, especially China and India. China and Europe support binding targets for developed countries to cut emissions.

Mr Downer told the meeting Australia would set its own long-term goal to cut emissions next year.

He said Australia was aware that climate change could threaten ecosystems such as the Great Barrier Reef and agriculture, and Australia had a responsibility to reduce its emissions. While Mr Downer did not explicitly support binding targets for developed countries, he said all major economies should support actions to mitigate climate change and these should include "measurable" actions by developing countries.