Alan Kohler is one of Australia’s most experienced business commentators. Alan has been a trusted source of investment advice to Australians for many years, and in 2005 he founded Eureka Report - Australia’s #1 online investment report. Along with Robert Gottliebsen and Stephen Bartholomeusz, Alan also founded Business Spectator, the popular business news and commentary website. Alan is the regular finance presenter on the ABC News and producer of the popular nightly graph (or two).
China's pledge to cap its emissions by no later than 2030 may not sound like a breakthrough, but it is promising to reduce the emissions intensity of its economy by a rate exceeding that achieved by the US shale gas boom and only matched by the collapse of the Soviet Union.
The Climate Change Authority has stuck with its recommendation that Australia reduce its emissions by 30% below 2000 levels by 2025. While the rate of reductions look steeper than other developed nations, they argue Australia's high emissions intensity means we've got a lot of catching up to do.
China's emissions per unit of GDP target suggests an emissions peak by 2027. It's pledge is being received as a positive but insufficient contribution to an international deal that has a chance of achieving 2 degree goal.
China has reconfirmed its target to peak emissions by 2030 and endeavour to do it sooner, but has also provided a more concrete target to cut the carbon emission intensity of GDP by 60% to 65%. But they may be able to do far better.
Fairfax is reporting the apparent revelation that Queensland Treasury advised the Adani Carmichael Coal Mine was unviable. But it's hardly a secret. The only way this mine will get up is if Governments bankroll it, which they might just be stupid enough to do.
With carbon pricing on the agenda at Paris, it's worth considering whether cap-and-trade or taxation is the best way to go. For most countries it will be the former - but there are likely to be exceptions.
Major business groups representing big polluters including the BCA, ESAA and AiG have teamed up with environmental activists to call for emission reduction policies that aren't simply seen as a joke by investors. Why would they care?
Energy efficiency in buildings, industry and transport would bring Australia’s emissions back to 2005 levels by 2030. Then switching to renewables in the electricity sector, and powering more sectors with that green energy, plus some land use changes and a switch to biofuel and gas in some areas, would finish the job.
The e-version of the popular seller is a major step towards mass adoption of all-electric transportation, and if Australia helps facilitate this transition it will herald a 90% reduction in fuel consumption.