Senate debates

Wednesday, 7 September 2022


Climate Change Bill 2022, Climate Change (Consequential Amendments) Bill 2022; Second Reading

8:38 pm

Photo of Malcolm RobertsMalcolm Roberts (Queensland, Pauline Hanson's One Nation Party) Share this | Hansard source

So it has come to this. The globalists' 50-year long march through the institutions has come to this. Fifty years of bribery, coercion and censorship of the few remaining honest scientists has come to this. Fifty years of inciting hatred and violence against anyone who opposes the climate change agenda—of fear based control—has come to this. Our scientists, crony corporations, political parties and mouthpiece media have failed Australia.

As a servant to the people of Queensland and Australia, I always speak up for what is right. Again today I will speak up for what is right. The Climate Change Bill 2022 seeks to exploit fear based on fraudulent science to enshrine in legislation the subjugation of everyday Australians. On many occasions now, I have sought to alert Australians to the nightmare our lives will become under net zero. Those many speeches, motions and bills have made little headway in mainstream media where dodgy journalists protect the interests of their advertisers and billionaire owners and ignore the truth. The public have been deceived into thinking that human activity is what is causing natural events and that this bill is necessary to save Australia. Instead, the truth is that Australia will need to be saved from this bill.

This is not conjecture. There's ample evidence to support this position from overseas experience of the nightmare that results from acting on fake science and feelings instead of hard, costed data. Here's a quick summary. Firstly: greening the world and growing food. According to the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, one-quarter of the increase in carbon dioxide in the last 30 years has been absorbed into plant life, leading to an increase in forest cover. This demonstrates the fertiliser effect of carbon dioxide or, as it's known, CO2. Although climate catastrophists think we can control the level of carbon dioxide in the Earth's atmosphere, Henry's law of chemistry, nature and empirical scientific evidence show that we cannot and we do not. Let's assume, though—contrary to the science and nature—that we can. If it was possible for humans to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, it would reduce the health of native forests and vegetation. Reducing CO2 would reduce crop yields, remove food from the tables of the world's hungry and require the increased use of chemical fertilisers that are made from natural gas—an irony lost on this bill's proponents.

The world is finding out, as Sri Lanka has found, that the trade-off here is between plant food and starvation. It's that simple. Forestation levels around the world have been rising since the 1980s because of the increase in CO2. Australia is currently gaining forest. Let me be clear for the benefit of the disinformation media: our continent is gaining trees, meaning the density of vegetation is improving, thanks to carbon dioxide. We're losing extent, though—much of it chopped down as part of so-called green energy construction such as building wind turbines, solar plants, access roads and transmission easements to take unreliable energy from where these things are built to where the power is needed. Thirteen thousand hectares of native vegetation is planned for destruction in North Queensland alone. I remember when greenies hugged trees, instead of chopping them down. Forests are being chopped down for biomass—woodchips! Can you believe it? Apparently woodchips are now renewable energy—oh, really!—spruiked on the BBC back in 2018 when the Drax coal plant was converted to burn trees imported from America in the name of reducing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Burning trees produces more carbon dioxide than burning coal, yet 'warmers' never let the facts get in the way of their feelings. One Nation has always supported preserving our old-growth forest because One Nation supports real environmentalism.

Let's look at ocean health. According to NASA, one-half of the increase in carbon dioxide over the last 30 years has been absorbed in the ocean carbon dioxide cycle. CO2 is sequestered in silt and in biological sinks. Seagrass, mangroves, tidal swamps and wetlands all sequester carbon dioxide and grow, improving habitat for fish breeding. CO2 is a vital ingredient in phytoplankton, the start of the marine food chain—and we are at the top of that chain. The more carbon dioxide produced from all sources and then absorbed in the ocean carbon dioxide cycle, the more phytoplankton there are, leading to an increase in marine life. Healthier seafood density supports the continued harvesting of seafood as an affordable source of protein for people. The marine carbon dioxide cycle absorbs nitrogen and phosphates coming from natural and man-made sources. Phytoplankton absorb these elements as part of their growth cycle, producing oxygen in the process. The less carbon dioxide available to be absorbed the less oxygenation and the less healthy our oceans become. These are simple facts. If you understand nature and conservation, you'll understand this. Coral is calcium carbonate—'carbon-ate'—CaCO3. Some of the CO2 sequestered in oceans has helped coral growth, most likely contributing to the record coral cover across the Great Barrier Reef announced just a few weeks ago—another inconvenient truth.

Let's look at the third point: greening the earth mitigates temperatures. A new study reported on NASA's website shows increased vegetation during the current 'greening earth period', as NASA calls it, and that has a strong cooling effect on the land due to increased efficiency of water vapour transfer to the atmosphere. Without this, the world would be hotter; instead it is slightly cooler. Increasing carbon dioxide—plant food—fertilises our forests, increasing transpiration and leading to more water vapour transfer which, in turn, cools the earth. Earth's history shows periods of increased temperature cause increased evaporation from oceans, and that water vapour transfer further cools the Earth. We have a beautiful, self-correcting ecosystem that has maintained the Earth at a liveable temperature range for millennia—fact! This climate change bill is based on self-interest, arrogance, hubris and deceit, risking a natural ecosystem that will protect us from any variability in atmospheric gases, and always has protected us.

Next, renewable power is a fairytale. Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could get all our energy from the sun and wind for free? Oh, yes, that is the extent of the thought processes of many Greens and teal voters. But they're missing the obvious problem. Solar panels, wind turbines, transmission lines through the middle of nowhere, battery backups and access roads are not free. The direct loss of natural habitat from wind and solar is significantly greater than from any other form of power.

Four megawatts of wind or solar generation is needed to replace each one megawatt of coal, hydro and nuclear. To explain with an example, the New South Wales government's own website on wind power mentions their 850 megawatts of wind turbine capacity generating just—wait for it—1,941 gigawatt hours of power annually. With a coal or nuclear plant of that size, their 850 megawatts running 24/7 would generate 7,440 gigawatts hours per year. The actual wind turbine output of 1,941 gigawatts hours represents just 26 per cent of rated capacity for the wind turbine. What a joke these things are, and solar is far worse.

Let's look at battery backup. The Australian Energy Market Operator, AEMO, recently assessed the battery requirement for a net zero grid stability at 60 gigawatt hours. Power going into a battery loses 20 per cent in resistance, meaning 72 gigawatt hours of generation will be needed to produce just 60 gigawatt hours of output. Batteries cost $1.5 million per megawatt hour, meaning batteries for short-term grid stability will require an investment in excess of $100 billion every 10 years, which is as long as these bloody things last. This is just the start! Germany experienced an eight per cent reduction in output from wind and solar in the first half of 2021 owing to poor weather. No battery can keep the lights on during a sustained period of wet weather such as Australia has had these past two years. Blackouts will be normal.

For those who want 2050 net zero, nuclear is the only way to do net zero. Other countries who descended into renewable hell ahead of us are being forced to rethink to save their economies. South Korea has given up; it's announced a move away from wind and solar to nuclear. Germany will extend its last three nuclear power plants until base-load power can be restored from gas that produces carbon dioxide. Last week the UK government announced a huge new 3,200 megawatt nuclear plant. Nuclear plants across the world will grow 26 per cent through to 2050. Australia can supply the world with reliable safe coal for many lifetimes. Instead the world is going nuclear simply because wind and solar supply reliable base-load power and coal has been demonised. If this climate change bill passes, Australia will be forced to make this decision for nuclear power. Those who vote for this climate change bill, you are voting for nuclear power!

Let's look at the insane power bills that will destroy the Australia we know. Last week in Britain, the household energy cap increased from $21.60 to $60.20—it's tripled in just one year, and you're doing this! How can people afford that? We cannot! Commercial power has risen 600 per cent in one year. Widespread business closures are now likely. A glance at the graph of UK GDP shows that UK citizens are less wealthy now than back in 2007. The correlation of GDP stagnation with the retirement of affordable base-load power and the switch to wind and solar is undeniable.

German households are so desperate for heating, firewood is now being hoarded and woodchips are back in commercial use. Seriously, what's next? Is whale oil going to make a comeback? Despite $250 billion spent on solar and wind so far, and $250 billion still to come, Germany is planning for blackouts next winter. Ten per cent of German industry is threatened with closure and 40 per cent is under financial pressure. No wonder Prime Minister Anthony Albanese is holding a jobs summit concurrent with the climate change bill. Here's One Nation's submission to the jobs summit: stop destroying affordable, reliable coal power.

The mouthpiece media are blaming the war in Ukraine for the gas shortage in Europe, deliberately avoiding the real question: how did energy-independent nations lose their energy independence and become reliant on Russian gas? Wind and solar did that. Is this empirical proof that wind and solar are unable to sustain base-load power, or is it just stupidity in shutting down base-load power before replacements were built? The answer is both. With unrealistic and unnecessary time lines now embedded in the Climate Change Bill, Australia is about to walk the same path which has brought the rest of the world, especially the UK, Germany and Texas, only misery.

Let's look at costs. Wind and solar are only cost effective to build and operate if the cost is offset with taxpayer subsidies. Australian subsidies for wind and solar currently total $13 billion every year. Reuters reported last week that Australia will need about 40 times the total generation capacity of today's National Electricity Market to achieve net zero. This includes 1,900 gigawatts of solar and 174 gigawatts of wind—not megawatts, gigawatts. How is that even possible? It's not. As a comparison, Liddell coal plant is two gigawatts and at full capacity can supply five per cent of our current energy needs. Charging electric vehicles is a large part of this huge increase in power generation needed to reach net zero. The $20 billion cost of rewiring and upgrading the national energy grid to allow for the charging of electric cars dwarfs the total value of the National Electricity Market, which is only $11 billion in sales. What will that do to power prices? There is no costing in the Climate Change Bill because the costings are coming out at insane amounts of money. I have a second reading amendment to this bill to introduce a cost-benefit analysis for every government decision. Surely that is just prudent economic management.

On blackouts, last week AEMO announced its latest 10-year outlook for the National Electricity Market, which warned of reliability gaps affecting New South Wales from 2025 and affecting Victoria, Queensland and South Australia from 2030. Gaps, in this context, means structural backouts—not enough generation to meet demand. Today we know there will be backouts in 2025 and even worse blackouts in 2030. What is the government's plan to stop the blackouts we know are coming due to coal plant closures? There's no plan, because the Climate Change Bill is not about increasing energy output; its aim is forcing a reduction in energy consumption. They want us to use less energy.

The Climate Change Bill is about control. The only way to achieve any partial or long-term stability under net zero is to use smart meters to restrict energy use. Germany and America have already started that rollout. The South Australian government has announced the rollout of smart meters. Smart meters allow the energy operator or government to go in and turn off any appliance in your home that is connected to the fuse box—air conditioners, the hot water service, lights and power circuits can be switched off remotely. This is not intended as an emergency measure. It will be normal under net zero. Big Brother will reach into your home and decide for you what appliances you can use and when. In what used to be a free country, this is terrifying.

To the Greens and teal supporters who voted on the basis of feelings, not facts, I say you have been deceived. The experience of countries ahead of us on the net zero slippery slope has seen the destruction of small and medium business, the decimation of the middle class and intrusive government control. You will have less, and elite billionaires will have more. We are paying for our own enslavement.

It's time to vote against creating a world where native vegetation, crop yields, the marine environment and the entire biosphere, the beautiful biosphere, is being damaged through an absurd attempt to reduce carbon dioxide. Nature's essential trace gas is essential for all life on the planet. It's time to vote against a world where hunger and poverty will increase by design as a means of control. Have some decency. Vote against the Climate Change Bill 2022. Take a stand. We have one flag, we are one community, we are one nation. We are proud and grateful carbon based life forms.


No comments