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Byron Shire
July 31, 2021

All aboard the Extinction Express

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David Lovejoy, Echo founder

Something has changed in the climate crisis argument.

Those who think nothing can be done, those who think nothing should be done, and those who deny there is any reason to do anything at all now have to make those arguments against the background of raging fires in the Amazon and northern boreal forests.

There is nowhere to hide if your preferred position is to continue business as usual. It means admitting a cold-blooded disregard for the consequences.

So the strategy now is not to deny, it is to glory in the destruction we are wreaking on the world. A kind of insanity has taken over the leaders of Australian parties and mining corporations. They don’t know how to run a world where the organising principle isn’t exploitation, so they have stopped trying to mitigate the problem of runaway ecological collapse and intend to aggravate it instead.

They are like those warped people who hold dinners where only endangered species are on the menu, and whose ambition is to eat the last specimen of an animal that has been driven extinct.

Those in power refuse to even consider planning the changes that need to happen quickly if we are to avoid planetary disaster; instead they are planning how to suppress public protest at their lack of action, how to evoke increasingly vicious law and order campaigns to maintain their position, and no doubt how to sneak away to prepared doomsday bunkers when the time comes.

It is impossible to trust any mainstream politician. Both major parties are supporting massive increases in coal mining, the coalition because it is owned by the fossil-fuel industry and the ALP because it has cravenly submitted to what it thinks is electoral realism. The Labor government in Queensland has even embraced the Joh Bjelke-Petersen model of lies and propaganda to demonise those who protest against its support for Adani.

We have already seen greedy and malevolent males with a sense of entitlement, control of the media, and the levers of power sneering at school children when they protest against the destruction of their future. It will get worse now the gloves are off.


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28 COMMENTS

  1. Its always those in power to blame ?
    Obsessed with government’s inaction on Global warming… thats all you ever hear !! Hold those
    Conservative governments to account…have you ever looked into the mirror, thought to yourself with the light on , off course using base load power !! …what iam i doing to minimise my carbon footprint on earth??
    Do you drive a car ? Have you a iron roof ? Use your computer? Watch television? Eat with utensils?
    Ride your bike ? Fly on holidays? Cook your food?
    The list is endless ….all whilst connected to coal
    And base load power… true ?? As i have stated in a previous article that the echo kindly reviewed…that iam starting a petition online ..its called the Paris Agreement for individuals to sign ..its a contract absolutely binding…once you sign thats it !!! Just as the government has sign the Paris Agreement ..and keeping its promise…unlike the namesake France who will not meet its targets!! One of many !!..so David are you and the echo team up for the Challenge??? Sign onto the agreement?? For mother earth..remember this is a team effort..governments are fulfilling the Paris Agreement obligations…now its the individuals turn
    “ELIMINATE COAL FROM YOUR EVERY DAY LIVES”
    This will be life changing, a sense of fulfillment
    Now lets see how serious we all are about Global Warming as individuals?? Will be onsite very soon for all to sign onto ..
    Any takers ??

    • Any takers? I’m up for that.
      You seem to be implying it will take sacrifice and denial but nothing could be further from the truth. For instance I have a solar powered energy efficient home which also charges my EV. I have all the power I want, very comfy thanks, and no utilities or fuel bills. Fossil fuels can’t hope to match the economics of renewables. We have a lot to thank fossil fuels for, they’ve really helped accelerate civilisation, but so did steam. Like all prior technologies inevitably they are superseded by better tech and renewables plus storage generation is already at, or below, price parity with fossil fuel generation. We’re rapidly approaching the end of the fossil fuel age, we’ve got something better.
      Vale fossil fuels.

      • With all due respect robin !! Energy efficient home thats a start !! Thats more than most are doing !! However once again those protesters worldwide are hypocrites in the very first order . Talk the talk robin
        Walk the walk ..honestly when have you ever heard protesters admit we as individuals are just as responsible?? with the addiction to coal in their every day lives ..including yours ..and mine !! i do say this with all due respect robin ..start the elimination process
        It really will take us back to the stone ages …but we have no choice…

    • Your claim that governments are fulfilling their Paris targets is completely false. Of all the countries on earth only two tiny ones, Morocco and the Gambia, are close to doing so. Australia is nowhere near meeting its targets. It’s fiddling the books using credits from a decade ago to make it look like it is. And even if all the other countries keep to their self imposed targets it will result in a planet 3 to 4 degrees hotter, not the 2 degrees worst case scenario of the Paris agreement. It’s a nonsense to think this crisis can be dealt with on the individual level. Did we fight the World Wars as individuals or as countries? Each person did their bit but commanded and co-ordinated by government. The point of the protests is that we have criminally negligent governments guilty of a gross dereliction of duty in failing to take the proper precautions to protect those whom they are sworn, above all else, to protect and serve. In approving more coal mines they are committing crimes against humanity. Future generations, if there are any, will judge them mercilessly. How much individual action would it take to compensate for just one day of burning coal from any of these mines? Of course we can all do more as individuals but claiming that it will be sufficient is utterly wrong.

      • Stephen i do respect all opinions, always will ..however you mention temperatures..most scientists are predicting global warming will rise by 1.5 degrees in the next decade and this will have a catastrophic effect..maybe you can explain this Because knowone can including scientists worldwide including the Australian climate council !!! Not 1 reasonable response or explanation !! 2000 years ago in the Roman Warm period the temperatures were 1.5 Degrees warmer than the present day Temperatures why Stephen ?? They say that grapes could have been grown in the UK during those times …now i asked what were the contributing factors for such Global Warming?? 2000 years ago?? No fossil fuels..no huge population’s considering that most scientists in the world are predicting dire consequences if the temperatures rise another 1.5 Degrees..how did those civilization’s survive Stephen???

        • They don’t specifically reference the Roman warm period but recent studies show conclusively that the world as a whole, as opposed to localised warming or cooling, has never warmed this quickly and on the same continuing upward trajectory as it is now. You could follow this link and then follow the included links to the studies mentioned but I doubt you will as I suspect you are too wedded to your contrarian stance. You didn’t address any of my points so I can only conclude you were unable to do so. Not much point in engaging with you as you clearly do not inhabit a fact based reality.

          https://www.theguardian.com/science/2019/jul/24/scientific-consensus-on-humans-causing-global-warming-passes-99

    • Well, I wonder just how you live your life?? I’m up for any way I can to reduce my load on the planet. I work very hard to walk the walk to match the way I talk the talk. I’m not living in a cave and I have no desire to. I like to be part of a functioning society, but I can absolutely guarantee that my environmental footprint is way smaller than the “average Joe Blow” because I think carefully about the choices I make to minimise my impact. I still live what I consider to be very well and it is absolutely possible to do that in a very environmentally friendly way. It’s all about what one’s priorities are… in fact, with my low consumption lifestyle, I’m probably happier and healthier than many of my high consumption peers. How about you?

    • Yo Burrow, we may be connected to coal but RE is increasing and Coal reducing all the time in Australia. We at 20% renewables in the electricity sector. Regarding your offer of “Any Takers”…Imma signing up here and now. I try to live eco friendly and I have rooftop solar panels ( since 2008 ) – I am a net energy exporter to the Energy Grid so please enjoy using some of my ‘Green Electrons’ when you switch on your TV. For transport, I’ve never owned a car, use my pushbike ( short trips ) and public transport ( longer trips ). Air travel, only flown once in the last 12 years to attend a funeral. On the wider issue of living more eco friendly I can offer the following about myself. I have a small suburban property with a garden and I grow tomatoes each season – all my neighbours love ‘their local tomato grower’ ( yours truly ) delivering fresh home grown tomatoes each year and a spinoff benefit is that it builds neighbour friendship and relations. I have planted native plants to create a habitat for the pollinators to visit and do their business with my tomatoes each year. My yard habitat is a refuge for lizards, birds and bees. Fruit bats and a possum visit my backyard Lemon-scented gum tree. The neighbours love it seeing the ‘natural world’ closeup and personal. All green waste from my property is reused as mulch around the yard or turned to compost for my tomato plants – I’ve never put a Green Lid ( green waste ) Wheely Bin out for council to collect. I have rainwater tanks and rarely have had to use tap / drinking water in the yard. I am mindful of what I buy, I don’t buy ‘stuff’ for the sake of it. Whatever can be kept for reuse or can be recycled I do it and so I have minimal ‘garbage’ to put out for collection each week. It takes a little bit of initial fore-thought to get oneself into the right mindset of things but soon it becomes automatic and voila the rewards appear. Burrow old son, try it for yourself.

  2. Thanks David. The lolly-bag of ‘all-sorts’ are
    a disgrace – ethic-less in the extreme. They
    may not carry guns but their tongues just so
    happen to be lethal weapons that slip on
    through parliament & law courts high or low.
    Orwell was right. We need one eye on the
    Media & the other on the Sparrow. Many of
    us won’t back down.

  3. Scotty Morrison refused to help fight the Amazon fires as it is not in our region but will send warships to the middle east . Go figure !

    • The Pacific Islands ARE in our region but ScoNO wasn’t much help recently at The Pacific Islands Leaders Forum – more Aussie Coalmines and Coal Exports as The Pacific Island Nations face an ongoing existential threat.

      • What threat Joachim?? Those islands are in fact growing in size !! Just more propaganda..to extract
        More money out of The Australian tax papers for something that dos not exist…and if they are unsuccessful in with the Australian Government
        They are more than happy to reach out to china
        For financial help .. hypocrites ..look the world has gone mad with this climate change nonsense…the world needs to chill out …

    • Overpopulation and greed are what is driving the climate crisis. When oh when will “they” realise that the earth is finite!

  4. Individuals must reduce their reliance on coal and oil.
    It’s easy to make a difference.
    My house has injected 1kWh per day of surplus into the grid since 2009 with only a 1kW system.
    I’ve not used any gas since then, as induction cooking is brilliant.
    Ride a pushbike where possible.
    Don’t fly or go on f..cking cruises.

    But where this crazy LNP government has really failed, is in not orchestrating the national power connection infrastructure to allow ALL renewable generation to be produced ANYWHERE and be deliverable EVERYWHERE.

    The government has also failed to educate itself and its people, in the urgent need to act ASAP to avert catastrophic runaway heat input to the weather system.

    It’s utterly dumbfounding that we as a “smart species”, have allowed such a rampant suicidal scenario to unfold with so much real science available for all to heed.

    The 18th of May was a shocking wake-up call, as to how perilously uneducated we have chosen to be, and what we voted for !!
    .
    We adulate so many science heroes of the past that have given us such an amazing life through documenting facts that inventors have applied to make this phenomenal high-tech world.
    And so many have died in wars, trying to protect it all for us.

    But then our careless thoughtless generation comes along and actually votes to help destroy life on Earth, by advancing the overheating of everything that helped us exist in the first place.

    Utterly crazy thoughtless disrespect for life.

    • I find your figures, Tim, hard to believe. 1kWh system, solar presumably, with batteries or your fridge wouldn’t work at night, and 1kWh goes into the grid. You might be a professional, would have to be to afford it all and an invection cooker, but your maths is crook. And who is going to recycle your components when they’re done? China I guess, at the cost of our government.

      • Robot, please do catchup. ‘Reclaim PV’ is a company in South Australia that PV systems and they been around since 2014.

    • Tim, all well said. Well done with your solar effort! Amazing that you can still export with a relatively small rooftop solar system capacity.

    • Runaway heat ! Catastrophic…?? Where did that info come from ? IPCC the propaganda champions
      Renewables currently supply 2 percent of the worlds energy , and most reputable scientists
      Are predicting that even in the next 30 years that renewables will only supply the world with 20 to 30 percent fact !! So where is the shortfall going to come from ?? France supplies its nation with 70 percent nuclear.. why cant Australia??

  5. It’s easy to see how religion starts. In the absence of old-style spiritualist religions, the new one based around natural climate change becomes the new dogma. I guess young Pippi Longstockings from Sweden will be their next guru – remember what happened to Joan of Arc though, same age, same obsessiveness.

  6. Thank you, David Lovejoy, for your excellent letter.

    We do not need a growing economy.
    Due to the tremendous breadth of the human niche, the human economy grows at the competitive exclusion of nonhuman species. If we can control our numbers and our consumption, we can all thrive.
    We need an education system that teaches the skills needed for frugal healthy living,
    and critical thinking to resist the insidious persuasions of a marketing industry running amok.
    We need a taxation system that generously supports such education.
    A life that is healthy and rich physically, socially, emotionally and intellectually need not cost the Earth.

    “To know that you have enough is to be rich.” ~ Lao Tzu

  7. Bravo David Lovejoy! Absolutely hits the nail on the head. “A kind of insanity has taken over the leaders of Australian parties and mining corporations. They don’t know how to run a world where the organising principle isn’t exploitation, so they have stopped trying to mitigate the problem of runaway ecological collapse and intend to aggravate it instead.
    Those in power refuse to even consider planning the changes that need to happen quickly if we are to avoid planetary disaster; instead they are planning how to suppress public protest at their lack of action, how to evoke increasingly vicious law and order campaigns to maintain their position, and no doubt how to sneak away to prepared doomsday bunkers when the time comes.”

  8. Exactly so David. Among your respondents, persons reponding in the kindly and guilty way, “I’ll reduce my power use” are fine,but hypocrisy arguments are foolish.
    However, the key point in power/ resources/ greenhouse gas/ work is that at least 50% is wasted on compounding interest payments, rentier charges, waste and war. Its huge, out economies are being sucked up into the coffers of a tiny elite mainly in the finance work. If we restructured finances the whole coal/ minerals/ war impost on our politics and natural world shrink. Sure we need to individually use less, but its not the main problem now. Its Big Business and Finance. the FIRE sectors (Finance, Insurance, Real Estate including Minerals) against human survival

  9. Plant trees, join a herbicide free land care group.

    Nimbin Land care is wanting help in herbicide free removal of seedling bananas which Rous Council, with a grant, are going to spray with Glyphosate, already banned in many countries.

    Same is happening in Byron Shire. Huge tracts of camphor are poisoned. Camphor hosts many insects, butterflies and birds.

    Why poison which then leeches into our creeks. Drinking water?

    Start real action locally. not talk talk with-out doing the walk.

  10. ‘While the number of fires in 2019 is indeed 80% higher than in 2018, it’s just 7% higher than the average over the last 10 years ago.’ source Forbes

  11. Fire is fire as water is water. A belief
    is just that. Only the believer needs
    to rethink the unthinkable & that’s
    what we’ve got now.

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