Climate Change Authority loses last climate change scientist
July 5, 2017
Australian Government's peak advisory body on climate change mitigation initiatives, the Climate Change Authority, has lost its last remaining climate scientist with the completion of term of board member Professor David Karoly.
In an interview with Graham Readfearn of The Guardian, Professor Karoly of the University of Melbourne said he believed it was critically important that at least one member of the Climate Change Authority was an expert and experienced climate change scientist to provide information and interpretation of the latest climate change science publications and data.
“In my view, it can only do that with a climate change scientist as a member, to provide expert assessment of the effectiveness of proposed greenhouse gas emission reductions nationally and globally, and the projected impacts on Australia from current and future climate change,” Professor Karoly said.
According to The Guardian article, the Department of Environment and Energy has indicated that Professor Karoly will not be replaced with another climate change scientist, but the Authority will rely upon advice from the Chief Scientist.
“The Chief Scientist is an ex officio Member of the Authority and can assist on scientific matters and in providing access to the scientific community, including climate scientists,” was the Department's response to Readfearn's inquiry.
According to Readfearn, climate change scientists who were previously members of the board including Prof Clive Hamilton, Prof John Quiggin and Danny Price, resigned "out of frustration that the government was listening to rightwing anti-science advocates instead of actual expertise".
The Guardian has also published an excerpt from the recently released book by Mark Butler, the Shadow Minister for Climate Change and Energy, entitled Climate Wars, which outlines how Australia's climate change policies have unravelled over the past decade.