Climate change is real: Abbott
FEDERAL Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has declared climate change is real after being attacked for telling a community forum that the science wasn’t settled.
Mr Abbott on Monday said: ‘‘ whether carbon dioxide is quite the environmental villain that some people make it out to be is not yet proven’’.
He infamously declared in 2009 the science was ‘‘ crap’’ but has since stated he accepts humans are contributing to global warming.
Yesterday ,the Liberal leader stated that ‘‘ climate change is real’’.
‘‘ Humanity is making a contribution,’’ Mr Abbott told Adelaide radio.
‘‘ It’s important to have a strong and effective policy to bring emissions down and that is what we’re doing.’’
Climate Change Minister Greg Combet said Mr Abbott’s comments at the forum demonstrated he ‘‘ clearly doesn’t accept the climate science’’.
While the political biffo continued unabated, Canberra academic Frank Jotzo gave a tick of approval to the federal government’s plan for pricing carbon.
‘‘ Starting with a fixed price and later moving to cap-andtrade allows an orderly tran- sition from allocating costs and risks to government . . . to allocating price and investment risks to major emitting businesses over time,’’ the Australian National University researcher wrote yesterday. Prime Minister Julia Gillard made it clear on Monday night she’d have preferred to go straight to an emissions trading scheme but couldn’t due to the ‘‘ minority parliament’’.
Ms Gillard told ABC TV she’d been forced to ‘‘ walk away’’ from her pledge not to introduce a carbon tax.
But Mr Abbott said her performance was worthy of Walt Disney. ‘‘ This excuse, ‘ The Greens made me do it’, just doesn’t wash,’’ he said.
The Opposition Leader said Ms Gillard knew the minor party would probably hold the balance of power in the Senate when she made her original promise before the federal election.
Mr Combet’s office yesterday was spruiking the results of an Essential Poll that found support for pricing carbon jumped from 38 to 54 per cent when people were told low and middle-income earners would be compensated for price rises.