Guest essay by Eric Worrall
WUWT recently reported how budget cuts to ARENA renewables programmes were an “existential threat” to green innovation. Now we learn that it is immoral to slash green budgets to try to contain the spiralling Aussie government debt.
Global Warming Is A Greater Moral Challenge Than Budget Repair
Australia is at a critical moment.
Cutting carbon emissions remains one of the key challenges of our time. Former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd described it as “the greatest moral challenge of our generation” and Barack Obama has stated “we will respond to the threat of climate change, knowing that the failure to do so would betray our children and future generations”.
Between 2012 and 2016, the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) supported 254 renewable energy projects across a range of technologies including new storage technology, ocean energy, solar thermal, and solar PV or enabling technologies. These projects have advanced clean technologies and brought the benefit of thousands of new jobs to every Australian state and territory.
Yet the future of ARENA is currently seriously imperilled. Scott Morrison’s Budget Savings (omnibus) bill, currently before the parliament, includes a cut of $1.3 billion to ARENA, which effectively would mean the end of ARENA.
The Prime Minister has stated that budget repair is a “moral challenge”. Yet surely the future of the planet poses an even greater moral challenge. Renewable energy is one of the best solutions to our greenhouse pollution — as well as a solution for regions that need jobs. ARENA has a critical role to play in Australia’s renewable energy future and needs to be pulled off the chopping block.
If renewables was a real business which delivered value, they could try to trade their way out of trouble – they could innovate, expand into new markets, trim costs, increase sales to restore profitability. But renewables are not a real business, they are a political fantasy, totally dependent on taxpayer handouts. So their only option when times get tough is to squeal like stuck pigs, to try to frighten politicians into maintaining the money font.