Australia rejects calls to phase out coal-fired power

A view of the Bayswater coal-fired power station in the Hunter Valley

It's up to world leaders who meet later this year to try understand all that's being said, such as the work of the year's two Nobel economics laureates suggesting ways to fight global warming, including a universal carbon tax.

Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack said Australia should "absolutely" continue to use and exploit its coal reserves despite the IPCC's terrible warning the world only has until 2030 to avoid climate change catastrophe.

The landmark report, released in South Korea on Monday, was compiled by a team of 91 authors from 40 countries following the 2015 Paris climate agreement, in which policymakers from around the world, including India and Pakistan, agreed to work towards limiting the global average temperature increase to 1.5°C.

"Coal does form a very important part of the Australian energy mixer and we make no apology for the fact that our focus at the moment is on getting electricity prices down", Price said.

Melissa Price, the federal Environment Minister, said the government would consider the IPCC report, saying the government "is committed to the Paris Agreement and takes its worldwide obligations seriously".

Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack.

The findings of this new report are terrifying, to say the least, and if we do not act quickly to try and reverse some of the effects of climate change we could very well all be staring in the reality of a disaster movie. Even that more modest goal is out of reach for now despite plans such as the controversial national carbon price, making buildings more energy efficient and eliminating coal as a source of electricity by 2030.

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The report has received a lukewarm response by Australia's center-right government. They serve as an example of the interconnectedness of climate change impacts, a characteristic that creates interacting, compounding negative effects.

But the data laid out by the Washington-based think tank in its study is misleading, economic and environmental experts have said.

"But high-tech nations will gain by advancing technology while the other nations will also benefit by receiving clean energy quicker".

Furthermore, if we managed to shave off that extra 0.5 of a degree, the world would still be on the way to flooded coastlines, intense droughts and heat, and the loss of many industries. Hot summers will become more frequent, and, wrote federal scientists in 2017, if carbon emissions remain high and water management systems aren't changed, chronic, long-term drought is increasingly possible by the end of the century. That means, she said, electrifying everything. "Actions need to be taken now if suffering, disruption, and conflict are to be avoided". He has also vowed to increase the burning of coal by the country.

Renewable sources like wind and hydro generated only 15.6 per cent.

But Greens M-P Adam Bandt said it is imperative that Australia abandons its coal-fired power plants.

"Australia is responsible for sending coal off to other countries and the atmosphere doesn't care where it gets burnt".

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