Thursday, 1 November 2007

Australian Emissions - one of the world's worst

As reported in The Age.

Between 1994 and 2004 Australia was the ninth largest contributor to increases in global emissions linked to climate change. We managed to bang out a 38% increase while many are struggling to achieve targets below 1990 levels. [Those countries who are meeting their goals all rely on the atom for at least part of their energy portfolio.]

The report, Growth and CO2 Emissions: How do different countries fare?, released in October, examined the trends among the world's 70 biggest producers of greenhouse gases. Australia was almost unique in being a developed country whose emissions are not only very high but growing rapidly.

In carbon-dioxide alone, Australia ranks 6th in the world per-person. If everyone on the planet strove to be like us, our situation would quickly become quite dire.

Switzerland, Sweden and France, which are as rich as Australia or richer, all produce only a third as much carbon dioxide per head as Australia. All rely heavily on nuclear and hydro power for their electricity.

Hydro is essentially fully exploited in Australia. That leaves nuclear.

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