Australia must take a leadership role on the planet-wide problem of climate change, we Aussies constantly hear from large swathes of our government, media and wanker classes.

We’ve done leadership so well before, in all manner of areas, apparently (rugby league, Aussie Rules football, and a number of other sports played almost exclusively here, but also swimming, boat people, bad-tempered actors, the list goes on…), so why can’t we just lead all the peoples of the earth to a rosy, low CO2 future, free from climate ‘extremes’ and a (thoroughly disproven, by ‘the Science’, BTW) runaway hothouse planet.

The gist is that as long as Australia ‘leads’, other countries will fall into line, you know, real simple.

Just like how Australia being peaceful has led to increased world peace, Australia being clean has led to decreasing world waste, Australia being healthy has led to better world health, the list goes on (sarcasm fully intended). 

After all, who really cares about outcomes, data and statistics, and things like effectiveness and feasibility – it’s really just the vibe of the thing… if you lead them, they will follow, planet-wide – doesn’t really matter if it makes any difference, does it?

Apart from that being as stupid as it sounds, the reality, of course, is that when it comes to the effect of CO2 on the entirety of the Earth’s atmosphere and oceans, Australia can play no direct or even indirect role in ALTERING THE PLANETARY CLIMATE.

Anyone who says otherwise is just in la la land, or a complete huckster, or both.

And no scientist will ever even make such a claim, no matter how many misleading percentages, strawman arguments and just plain fraudulent statements are thrown about by green-tinged politicians, ‘climate’ leaders and anti-human environmental activists alike (or are they all the same thing?).

And yes, I’m happy to be corrected on this, if you can find a scientist that will effectively refute the simple claim that Australia’s approach to CO2, and even ‘leadership’ on the issue, will have no noticeable impact on the Earth’s climate, even on multi-decadal timescales. Anyone, anyone??

But, while we wait, here are some simple statistics and calculations covering the last, like 150 years or so:

Global CO2 PPM and Australia (approximate)
1870 global CO2 PPM280
2022 global CO2 PPM420
Difference PPM140
Appx share for Australia between 1850 and 20221.50%
Simple Australian CO2 PPM TOTAL contributions since 18702.1
Simple Australian CO2 PPM per decade since 18700.14
2022 global CO2 if Australia had zero emissions since 1870417.9
2022 global CO2 if ONLY Australia had contributed emissions since 1870282.1

Yes, I know, tables can be confusing, right?

And, like, Australia totally produces a massive amount of Scope 3 emissions, right, and just forces the rest of the world to use our fossil fuels, especially those that would otherwise die in freezing darkness and despair… We should just stop that pesky export trade and all will be solved.

If we didn’t supply such dirty CO2-emitting energy sources, other humans would just adapt to having no reliable access to electricity, clearly, er derr…. And anyway, just get some damn solar panels and big batteries, you heathens!… Just think of our poor future Aussie children dealing with a possibly slightly warmer climate, perhaps! And then there’s all of the magical renewables jobs!! We will simply lead the world in renewables wages growth!!…

And what about if Australia used its abundant energy resources of all types, including fossil fuels, to reduce energy poverty right across the globe, improving the lives of billions of children?… You know, leading the way out of global energy poverty…

“Oh how dare you!! You can’t possibly use fossil fuels my dears, heaven forbid!!!”

But enough consideration of such complicated and nuanced aspects of reality.

Again, we here in Oz are all only really interested in the vibe of the thing, and leading the world in a general, non-binding sense.

Actually helping people and lifting billions out of poverty just doesn’t fit with that concept, does it, and pales in comparison to the warm fuzzy feeling of “helping to reduce global CO2 emissions” by consciously not helping alleviate energy poverty in the first place.

Should be our new mantra actually:

“Australia – leading most of the world (not the really poor ones) to a generally wonderful, totally less ‘extreme’ future climate, one vibe at a time”.