Saturday, 8 March 2008

Political Alignment

The week before last, Brendan Nelson announced the Opposition was abandoning its support for nuclear energy in Australia. But did this announcement achieve its intended goal?

Well, it got the Opposition in the news. Not much can achieve that goal more effectively in Australia than making a policy announcement including the 'N'-word.

Ziggy Switkowski called the decision pragmatic and with this I agree. As long as there is an active pro-nuclear party; irrational arguments against the technology are able to find some purpose. Now that Australia has practically no pro-nuclear political advocates, those anti-nuclear arguments can work their course and Australia can get down to the serious business of proving aggressive emissions reduction targets are impossible without nuclear energy. I see no other way to educate the Australia public. Now that both sides of the political spectrum are aligned on nuclear power's future in Australia, we can come to our collective senses together.

Look for 'loud and proud' announcements of wind farms, solar voltaic / thermal plants, geo-thermal projects, bio-fuels plants and investments in clean coal research. But don't be surprised to learn of quietly commissioned coal stations to provide the reliable, high quality energy Australia needs to sustain itself - coupled, of course, with international scrutiny from organisations tracking the subsequent emissions.

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