Wednesday, November 06, 2013

John Howard Praises Tony Abbott's Climate Change Denialism

Stephen Harper's all-time favourite garden gnome, former Australian prime minister John Howard, has come out swinging in favour of Australia's new hard rightwinger, Tony Abbott.

John Howard has told an audience of climate sceptics in London that Tony Abbott’s defiance on global warming in the face of left-wing zealotry was the foundation of his electoral victory in September.

In a lecture at the Global Warming Policy Foundation, established by former Thatcher minister and climate sceptic Nigel Lawson, the former Australian prime minister insisted that the high tide of public support for "overzealous action" on global warming has passed.

"I am very sceptical about the possibility of a global agreement ever being reached when you look at what happened in Copenhagen," he told reporters before the speech, adding there was no real prospect of a deal between the major emitters Europe, the US and north Asia.

In the speech, titled One Religion is Enough, Howard described his own dalliances with an emissions trading scheme (ETS) as purely political and questioned the scientific consensus on climate change.

"Tony Abbott now has the great responsibility and honour of being prime minister of Australia because a little under four years ago he challenged what seemed to be a political consensus on global warming,” Howard said, describing Abbott’s stance as “courageous”.

Howard’s speech described the advocates of climate change mitigation as “alarmists” and “zealots” for whom “the cause has become a substitute religion”. He said “global warming is a quintessential public policy issue” and policymakers should not become subservient to the advice of scientists.

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