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Peter Dutton’s energy policy is a political death wish – and utterly irresponsible in the face of the climate emergency | Ian Lowe


As well as spending billions subsidising fossil fuels, we are spending billions more repairing the damage global heating is doing

Peter Dutton’s proposed energy policy, in the face of our climate emergency, is utterly irresponsible. Not just irresponsible environmentally, but also economically. Given community attitudes, it looks like the silliest political death wish in recent history.

Joëlle Gergis’s recent Quarterly Essay, Highway to Hell, was a frightening reminder of the price we are already paying for climate change. In property damage from floods and fires as well as lost agricultural production, the bills keep rolling in. As well as spending billions subsidising fossil fuels, we are spending billions more repairing the damage global heating is doing. It would be in our direct interest to be urging a rapid increase in ambition from the inadequate Paris targets. Becoming the first country in the world to weaken our response would undermine the growing impetus for a concerted program of action. We should be increasing the rate of decarbonisation, not slowing it.

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