Carbon Tax for Cleaner Environment
Australia has seen some heavy and devastating effects of climate change over the last few months. A ten year drought almost brought the country to its knees before El Nina arrived with some long awaited rainfalls. But the relief was short lived as the rain never stopped. It was so heavy in parts of Queensland and New South Wales that hardly anything was spared from nature’s fury.
An inland tsunami was the description for the massive flood that hit Toowoomba and the valley beyond. Houses, cars and people were washed away and the scenes shown on television news reports were hard to bear. A child ripped from a rescuers arms, a toddler ripped from her pregnant mother’s arms, a thirteen year old boy telling rescuers to take his younger brother first as the waters turned and claimed his life and that of his mother, and the stories go on and are heartbreaking.
The Capital city of Brisbane was inundated and hundreds of homes and businesses went underwater as the river broke its banks. Add to that a cyclone on the coast at Tully, near Rockhampton, virtually wiped out that town and hundreds of acres of bananas. Kangaroos trying to out race floodwaters were a sight that could only be outdone by the drowning of thousands of heads of cattle as the waters raced over the border into New South Wales.
On and on the waters raced down the Darling River system and into Victoria where they caused more havoc to a state still reeling from the Black Saturday bushfires of the previous February. At that time whole townships were burnt to ashes and almost 200 people with them. Many suffered injuries as they tried to save property and livelihoods.
Super high temperatures related to climate change and, therefore, carbon pollution is affecting the world from the South Pole to Europe and from the Arctic region to the Southern Oceans. Ice melt and rising sea water are producing an unsustainable effect that we may never reverse.
The Australian government has a huge bill as infrastructure is restored, including thousands of kilometres of railway lines and roads. It is also paying massive compensation to householders and businesses to get them back on their feet. Mines were flooded out and jobs hung in the balance as the wheels of recovery slowly moved forward.
We know that is not the end of it for every year things get worse. The drought will return, the agricultural industry will struggle on and fires will ravage the countryside.
Just over a year ago the then Prime Minister of Australia, Kevin Rudd, was usurped by Julia Gillard, the first woman in the role. She took over on the promise of getting the country back on its feet and the people were screaming for something to be done on climate change.
Now things are different. Gillard is introducing a price on carbon to take effect from July 1st, 2012. But the Opposition leader, Tony Abbott, is running around trying to convince people that pricing carbon is a mistake. He is causing massive confusion among people where ignorance of the facts leads them to fear what he has labelled a Carbon Tax.
Something had to be done to stop global warming and if pricing the polluters is the best solution then we should not fear the consequences. If jobs are lost from the coal industry they will be made up for in renewable energy businesses that will inevitably take its place