Monday, July 16, 2012

Australia’s controversial and contentious Carbon Tax.

Australia has a “Carbon Tax” since July 1; a tax our Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, and her deputy promised the Australian people before the election “they wouldn’t have under a government she would lead.” As a consequence, the Australian public has become cynical about politicians taken to lying, and think that they are all untrustworthy.

Julia Gillard is now touring Australia, trying to explain the tax and its “benefits,” but few, if any, believe anything she says. This has become a very contentious and controversial issue in Australia. Following is a must read article on this subject, giving you the other side of the debate and some facts on coal combustion and Carbon dioxide. I published this as it may be of interest to the Australian community; the opinion expressed is not necessarily that of the blogger.

And here is an interesting video and three minutes puts carbon dioxide into perspective. Click here. - Werner

 Is Coal Dirty?
Some Facts on Coal Combustion. By Viv. Forbes assisted by volunteer editors.Carbon Sense": 15 July 2012
A print-ready copy of this issue of "Carbon Sense" and the full article can be downloaded from:

Please spread this email around. We are winning the war about Man-made Global Warming.
But about half of the population still think that the carbon tax will do some good. Why? It is all about "cleaning up dirty coal energy".
The seeds of public concern were sewn with Penny Wong's Machiavellian linking of "carbon" and "pollution". She was assisted by the gross stupidity of the coal industry leadership in promoting nonsense like carbon sequestration as a "clean coal" option. The public naturally assumed "if they need to spend billions to produce "clean coal", obviously we are now using "dirty coal". This generation of coal industry leaders is more culpable than the greens – they should have known better – they have betrayed their shareholders, their employees and the nation.
The whole "dirty coal" program was assisted by the continual portrayal by alarmist media and government propagandists of power station cooling towers belching "pollution". As carbon dioxide is an invisible gas, this is clearly a lie. What is seen are clouds of water vapour with no more pollution potential than wispy white cumulus clouds or boiling dark nimbus thunder-heads.
The climax of this all was a letter published in the Queensland Times of Ipswich, a town founded on coal mining, describing carbon dioxide as "one of many lethal pollutants released by coal combustion".

What are the facts on coal combustion?

When we burn any carbon fuel such as coal, oil, wood, gas, grass, candle sticks, cardboard or cow manure, it produces several gases. Burning a typical Australian thermal coal in air would produce mainly nitrogen (68%), carbon dioxide (21%), water vapour (7%), oxygen (1%), argon (1%) and ash (2%).

So 98% by weight of coal combustion products (the first five) are natural gases merely being recycled to the atmosphere from whence they came. None are toxic. All are invisible except for water vapour. To describe carbon dioxide as a "lethal air pollutant" is an irresponsible lie – it is surprising to see such rubbish in print. Carbon dioxide is the most important and essential atmospheric plant food, without which there would be no plants, no herbivores (which live on plants), and no carnivores (which live on herbivores).

Our coal is simply another form of trees and plants that grew in Australian soils in a previous era. Ash is unburnt mineral matter that comes naturally from the soil and should go back there. Almost all of the ash is now captured in modern coal fired power stations, but is released freely in bush fires, barbeques, wood stoves, cow manure cookers and open air cremations.

Soot is a product of incomplete combustion and is not produced in modern, well-designed power stations.
It is no more dangerous than burnt toast. It is true that some coals can produce some SOX (oxides of sulphur) and NOX (oxides of nitrogen) but these are caught in modern filters and cleaners. Only small traces enter the air. They could be annoying, and would be dangerous if concentrated in city air, but EVERY normal component of coal is an essential plant nutrient, and far from being invariably toxic, is often in short supply in the broader environment. Anyone who raises crops or animals often needs to supplement soils, pastures or animal feeds with nitrogen, sulphur, phosphorus, calcium, magnesium, copper, zinc and selenium to name a few.

 The few coal combustion products that are genuinely toxic, such as mercury, occur rarely and in tiny quantities. If present, special filters are used to ensure they are not released. Australian coals are generally very low in mercury, indeed lower than in the average earth environment. Naturally occurring rocks containing mercury (as found at Cinnabar in Queensland), dental amalgams and the new "green" fluoro light bulbs represent a far greater mercury danger. 

In Earth's long history, today's level of atmospheric carbon dioxide is very low and the green world will benefit greatly from any additional carbon dioxide we add to the atmosphere. That is why nurserymen add carbon dioxide to their greenhouses. Australia's tax on carbon dioxide now applies to big power stations, rubbish tips, steel works, cement plants, refineries and coal mines. But many of them have been given exemptions or compensation packages. Naturally they will pass all net costs onto consumers, but our government says that most voters will be compensated and will feel no pain. So it all looks like achieving a net nothing.

Carbon dioxide is produced whenever animal or vegetable matter is burnt, digested or rots. So when do we start taxing the big-time emitters such as termites? There are trillions of them quietly munching their way through timber, dead trees and grass. Then we have all the rice paddies, swamps and wetlands emitting that other dastardly natural gas, the Will-o-the-Wisp, methane. And who is going to chase India's 280 million sacred cows with gas collection bags?  For the full article, go to the link at the beginning of this article.

Here is a detailed report on coal combustion products:

Carbon and Carbon Dioxide – Clearing up the Confusion:

Clearing the smog of Beijing with “Coal by Wire”:

My thought for today: - Werner
“Government big enough to supply everything you need is big enough to take everything you have. The course of history shows us that as a government grows, liberty decreases.” ? Thomas Jefferson


Activist said...

No doubt we are being conned. The video explains it very clearly.

Anonymous said...

Julia Gillard DID promise a price on carbon, in the same sentence as a matter of fact. It is the propoganda machine that made it a lie, not her. Abbott used a Goeball technique. Thought you may recognise that. If not then how is it worse than what she did promise? You want a politicsn to stick by theri word when a better offer comes up?Is it not us first? In fact far better off then what she promised and far far far better off than Liberal policy of Direct Action as both agree that CO2 needs reducing. Why admit politicians lie but then believe Abbott? She did not lie. He did.