Australian Bushfire Crisis - Page 4 - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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#15058579
There is another monster fire coming up and the wildfires break all previous records. There is no prospect of sufficient rains to put out the fires. Already 400 million tons of CO2 have been belched into the atmosphere by the wildfires. By the time this is over, more than Australia's annual CO2 emissions of 550 million tons will have been emitted by the wildfires alone. That's not going to be sequestered by new growth. Burnt forests turns from a carbon sink to a carbon source.

Australia calls for another mass evacuation as monster bushfires return

* A water bombing helicopter ditched in a dam on New South Wales South Coast on Thursday. The pilot was safe.

* Authorities have warned that the huge fires, spurred by high temperatures, wind and a three-year drought, will persist until there is substantial rainfall. The weather agency said there was no sign of that for months.

It takes a huge amount of rain to put out bushfires of this intensity and of this scale. That’s not forecast,” South Australia Fire Chief Jones told reporters.

* Weather officials in South Australia issued a severe weather warning for some parts of the state’s north.

* New South Wales fire officials warned of “extreme fire danger” in the state’s alpine region.

* Victoria state extended its disaster alert level for another two days.

* The Australian Bureau of Meteorology reported only 6% of typical annual rainfall last year, while daytime temperatures were more than 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) above normal: “Australia’s getting warmer, the fire season’s getting longer and the severity of the fire weather during that season is getting more frequent and severe.”

* New South Wales announced new funding of A$1 billion ($686 million) to rebuild.

* Mining magnate Andrew Forrest pledged A$70 million to a recovery package, including a force of more than 1,000 volunteers from the mining and agriculture sectors to help with rebuilding.

* 1,870 homes have been destroyed on the badly hit New South Wales coast.

* Moody’s Analytics said the cost of the fires could easily surpass that of deadly 2009 Black Saturday fires that destroyed 450,000 hectares of land, which cost an estimated A$4.4 billion.

* The prime minister has pledged A$2 billion ($1.4 billion) to a newly created National Bushfire Recovery Agency.

* About 100 firefighters from the United States and Canada are helping with another 140 expected in coming weeks.

* Malaysia has approved a plan to send 65 fire and rescue personnel to help. The deployment is awaiting Australian approval.

* Ecologists at the University of Sydney have estimated 1 billion animals have been killed or injured.

* The fires have emitted 400 megatonnes of carbon dioxide and produced harmful pollutants, the EU’s Copernicus monitoring program said.

* Smoke has drifted across the Pacific, affecting cities in South America, and may have reached the Antarctic, the U.N. World Meteorological Organization said.


Meanwhile, the bots and trolls keep on spreading fake news about the wildfires.
Last edited by Atlantis on 09 Jan 2020 12:45, edited 1 time in total.
#15058585
@Donald, an ideological debate about capitalism and socialism is useless for finding practical solutions for climate change. You may not be aware of this, but as a European who has seen the mess left behind by communism, I know that socialist countries and state-run economies have a terrible environmental track record, far worse than so-called capitalist countries.

The market economy is not the problem because it can be regulated any which way you want. It's the political decision to regulate or not to regulate that's the issue. Therefore, it's the imperative of the Empire that dictates your political decisions and not the market economy (aka capitalism) that's the problem.

The empire uses the market economy for window dressing, but when it loses the competition of the free market, the US uses political pressure, sanctions, and in the end, bombs, to bend the market rules so it can win. What has that got to do with the market economy? But even without that, US imperialism is indelibly wedded to the monopoly capitalism of its corporate empire, just like the British crown was wedded to the East India Company during the British Empire. The monopolies distort the market.

Empirical study shows that climate change denial originates with US fossil fuel magnates like the Koch brothers, etc., and that climate change denial is driven by

1) the American belief in small government, ie. no regulation,
2) the belief in the "American way of life", ie. unlimited wealth accumulation, and
3) the US's geopolitical objectives.

1) and 2) are obvious, and 3) is determined by the US's rivalry with Chine for global domination (again the Empire!). Helping China transition to modern technology and clean energy, helping 3rd world countries cope with the effects of climate change, while hampering the US's fossil fuel industry by regulation and a carbon tax is not thought to be compatible with the imperatives of the US Empire. (They aren’t even defending US interests; they are defending only their own short-term profits, because by delaying the transition to green technology they condemn the US to failure)

From its origin in the US, climate change denial has been spread to the world on the vehicle of right-wing populism.

The US is objectively one of the richest countries on the planet. The number of migrants trying to reach the US is in itself sufficient proof that even US citizen at the lowest level are still privileged compared to the newcomers.

The solution to climate change is not to hypothesize about a socialist revolution that will not and that can not take place, but to regulate the US oligarchy and the political system that prevents equal distribution of wealth in the US.

No matter which side of the political divide you are on, as an American, the imperatives of the Empire form your worldview - if you are against just as much as if you are in favour. Instead of considering practical solutions that work elsewhere, you build a capitalist straw man. By resorting to the capitalist straw man, you avoid addressing the role of the empire.
#15058599
Atlantis wrote:
Empirical study shows that climate change denial originates with US fossil fuel magnates like the Koch brothers, etc., and that climate change denial is driven by

1) the American belief in small government, ie. no regulation,
2) the belief in the "American way of life", ie. unlimited wealth accumulation, and
3) the US's geopolitical objectives.

1) and 2) are obvious, and 3) is determined by the US's rivalry with Chine for global domination (again the Empire!). Helping China transition to modern technology and clean energy, helping 3rd world countries cope with the effects of climate change, while hampering the US's fossil fuel industry by regulation and a carbon tax is not thought to be compatible with the imperatives of the US Empire. (They aren’t even defending US interests; they are defending only their own short-term profits, because by delaying the transition to green technology they condemn the US to failure)



It's called the Curse of Oil.

"The idea that resources might be more of an economic curse than a blessing began to emerge in debates in the 1950s and 1960s about the economic problems of low and middle-income countries.[3] However in 1711 The Spectator wrote "It is generally observed, that in countries of the greatest plenty there is the poorest living",[4] so this was not a completely new observation.'
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Resource_curse

The Koch brothers are a special case. They, and their billionaire friends, literally spent billions dragging the country to the far Right. The Kochs started in the 70s, but they didn't get far because their ideas were ridiculous. So, starting in the 80s, they started dozens (now over a hundred) organisations that pushed the country to the Right in a hundred different ways. Pence got brainwashed at a Koch 'school'. They even hustle Right wing Supreme Court judges with things that would get a regular judge looking for employment. You need to read Dark Money.





https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/jan/17/dark-money-review-nazi-oil-the-koch-brothers-and-a-rightwing-revolution


https://www.amazon.com/Dark-Money-History-Billionaires-Radical/dp/0307947904/ref=sr_1_1?crid=1QI4SFQSTMWDB&keywords=dark+money+jane+mayer&qid=1578579486&sprefix=dark+money%2Caps%2C146&sr=8-1
#15058626
late wrote:It's called the Curse of Oil.


It's true that the "curse of oil" plays a role in most oil producing countries, except for Norway, which proves that countries can have good governance despite the odds.

The curse of oil may also to degree impact the US because of the importance of the petrodollar; however, personally I find the concept of the Dutch disease more pertinent to the US economy. The dutch disease has plagued empires since Roman times. It's partly responsible for the de-industrialization of the US economy.

The Koch brothers are a special case.


The Koch brothers led the charge of the climate change deniers as far back as the 80s; however, the funding effort was joined by many others including Exxon, Mercers, etc.
#15058634
@Atlantis, where in my previous response did I advocate socialism or communism as a solution to climate change? Maybe re-read what I wrote:

@Atlantis , I agree, but Europe and other developed regions are not exempt from this pattern of behavior. The only difference is that Europe has a stronger labour movement, better regulations and a superior welfare state, but they aren't exempt from the moral paradox of capitalist wealth. Materially speaking Northern Europeans are better off than most workers in North America, which is probably why climate justice is taken more seriously in Scandinavian countries. In the Anglosphere and more specifically North America, it's a dog-eat-dog society and the market is constantly pricing everyone out with very few protections, either in terms of a social safety net, wage rates or in terms of broader political economy. Everyone I know who has had a taste of European life has found it difficult to return here. So if you think we're the privileged ones, I don't think you understand how inequality operates here and how capitalism exploits false consciousness more efficiently here than anywhere else in the world.
#15058653
Donald wrote:@Atlantis, where in my previous response did I advocate socialism or communism as a solution to climate change? Maybe re-read what I wrote:


There is always the possibility that I misunderstood what you said, but from:

Donald wrote: they aren't exempt from the moral paradox of capitalist wealth. ... the market is constantly pricing everyone out with very few protections, ... capitalism exploits false consciousness ...


I understood that you consider "capitalism" as the root cause and that the market economy will always produce the same problems as in the US because "they are not exempt from the moral paradox..." That's why I took some trouble explaining why I think that the social market economy in other countries produces better results than the neoliberal model in the US, even if both are sometimes summarized by the vague term of capitalism.

If you consider the market economy to be fundamentally flawed, you can't blame me for assuming that you advocate socialism, or like certain others here (@potemkin, et. al.,) consider that socialism is the solution to climate change and everything else.

If that is not the case, so much the better. Anyways, my argument still hold true, even if it doesn't apply to you.
#15058654
@Atlantis, Capitalism is most definitely a factor in Climate Change. Oil is a cheap substance for fuel efficiency. Until a cheaper green alternative comes along, global businesses will always find the cheapest and not best solutions to maximise profits. Nonetheless it is true that countries are trying to incentivise green and bring in laws to limit what businesses can do to make them think differently but to be frank it isn't enough. And it isn't enough because the lobbiests for big business have their fingers in power due to... wait for it... Capitalism.
#15058662
Atlantis wrote:@B0ycey, read my 2nd message on this page (page 4). I think you'll understand what I mean.


Well I agree completely with what you wrote. The market economy shouldn't dictate policy and can be regulated anyway you like. But the drive for profits out performs logic. It is profit that makes people live in denial because it costs them to think differently. It is difficult to prove and even this is perhaps merely heresay (and my opinion), but to me if profit was not a factor in an economic model, there would be no reason for any country to deny evidence and as such would invest more time in developing solutions to this problem.

The technology to reduce our dependence on oil significantly is already out there. You have to question why we are still where we are today as that is the case. And it simply comes down to cost.
#15058674
B0ycey wrote:Well I agree completely with what you wrote. The market economy shouldn't dictate policy and can be regulated anyway you like. But the drive for profits out performs logic. It is profit that makes people live in denial because it costs them to think differently. It is difficult to prove and even this is perhaps merely heresay (and my opinion), but to me if profit was not a factor in an economic model, there would be no reason for any country to deny evidence and as such would invest more time in developing solutions to this problem.

The technology to reduce our dependence on oil significantly is already out there. You have to question why we are still where we are today as that is the case. And it simply comes down to cost.


You can profit by selling fossil fuels or by selling renewable energy. There is no difference, except that those who benefit from the fossil fuel economy will suffer.

Fossil fuel producers (Opec, Russia, Australia, the US) will lose business and influence. Renewable energy is decentralized and most countries can produce their own energy. Even without climate change, to become independent of foreign energy sources is in itself a worthwhile aim.

The market can be regulate so that industry can no longer externalize costs such as environmental destruction or climate change. The price of products and services will have to include all costs including environmental impact and costs for recycling, etc. The EU's carbon tax has already started to reduce CO2 emissions in Europe.

On the other hand, the dirty heavy industry of the Comecon countries was extremely polluting even without the profit motive.
#15058676
Atlantis wrote:I understood that you consider "capitalism" as the root cause and that the market economy will always produce the same problems as in the US because "they are not exempt from the moral paradox..." That's why I took some trouble explaining why I think that the social market economy in other countries produces better results than the neoliberal model in the US, even if both are sometimes summarized by the vague term of capitalism.

If you consider the market economy to be fundamentally flawed, you can't blame me for assuming that you advocate socialism, or like certain others here (@potemkin, et. al.,) consider that socialism is the solution to climate change and everything else.

If that is not the case, so much the better. Anyways, my argument still hold true, even if it doesn't apply to you.


Europe is indistinguishable from the US and the rest of the Anglosphere where it concerns the historical connection between carbon emissions and economic development. It is part of the industrial West. It is part of the same historical-economic dynamic that enriched itself via colonialism and imperialism. Your own country, Germany, is a bigger carbon emitter than the UK, Canada or Australia and it enjoys a standard of living generated by its economic ties to the United States. You seem to think having better climate laws and a better welfare state is a German or European birthright rather than a privilege. :roll:
#15058678
Atlantis wrote:You can profit by selling fossil fuels or by selling renewable energy. There is no difference, except that those who benefit from the fossil fuel economy will suffer.


But what of the consumer? Tesla or Ford. Both American. Who sells more cars? You are of course correct that green can be profitable though. But it requires a lot of R+D and a high cost to the consumer to get that return.

Those who invest in oil get a return for little investment today. Those who invest in green pay a high price to get it tomorrow. Capitalism forces more people to think of today. Always has. Always will do. And like every cycle they will falter to the renewables when the last drop goes dry. But can we wait that long?

Even without climate change, to become independent of foreign energy sources is in itself a worthwhile aim.


Totally agree. And perhaps is the cause for the world's ills today. But if we both agree that this is beneficial, why do few nations pursue unshakling themselves? Simple. Economics.

On the other hand, the dirty heavy industry of the Comecon countries was extremely polluting even without the profit motive.


To be fair this was before climate was a big issue. And I would never promote Soviet Socialism which was authoritian anyways. Plus they were competing with America so perhaps not the best sell for another economic model being a solution for Climate Change. Having said that before the Industrial revolution, cities were clean from soot. It was the need to produce high volumes of cheap crap that caused the pollution.
#15058682
Donald wrote:Europe is indistinguishable from the US and the rest of the Anglosphere where it concerns the historical connection between carbon emissions and economic development. It is part of the industrial West. It is part of the same historical-economic dynamic that enriched itself via colonialism and imperialism. Your own country, Germany, is a bigger carbon emitter than the UK, Canada or Australia and it enjoys a standard of living generated by its economic ties to the United States. You seem to think having better climate laws and a better welfare state is a German or European birthright rather than a privilege. :roll:


On a per capita basis, the US emits twice as much CO2 and Australia three times as much as the EU, even though the US has off-shored most of its CO2 emissions together with manufacturing and is actively cheating about the methane emissions from fracking. Your life-style sucks! Moreover, while the EU is the only region that is actually reducing its emissions, the US and Australia are still denying climate change to further expand fossil fuel exploitation.

Germany never had a colonial empire and its prosperity has nothing to do with the US. In fact the US empire is a liability both economically and politically.

You are obviously delirious and incapable of dialogue. There is no point in continuing the discussion.
#15058690
Atlantis wrote:On a per capita basis, the US emits twice as much CO2 and Australia three times as much as the EU, even though the US has off-shored most of its CO2 emissions together with manufacturing and is actively cheating about the methane emissions from fracking. Your life-style sucks! Moreover, while the EU is the only region that is actually reducing its emissions, the US and Australia are still denying climate change to further expand fossil fuel exploitation.


The reality is that geographical distances between points of development in North America are much larger than they are in Europe. Not sure what that has to do with individual lifestyle, people born here have to live with the reality of urban layouts that were determined long before they were born.

Germany never had a colonial empire and its prosperity has nothing to do with the US. In fact the US empire is a liability both economically and politically.


The US is Germany's biggest trading partner and American financing was instrumental in Wirtschaftswunder. Your prosperity is absolutely married to the Americans.

You are obviously delirious and incapable of dialogue. There is no point in continuing the discussion.


Sounds like you're getting a bit triggered.
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