Sep 20, 2006

Grain harvest and water supplies hit by climate change

Grain harvest and water supplies hit by climate change

JOINT MEDIA RELEASE

Anthony Albanese MP

Shadow Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Water

Gavan O’Connor

Shadow Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries

20 September 2006

Australia’s 2006 grain harvest has been cut by 36% because of reduced rainfall and ongoing drought linked to climate change.

The cut in Australia’s wheat exports will cut Australia’s export income by almost $2 billion.

The Bureau of Meteorology believes that climate change is one of the main reasons for the long trend of dry weather.

Australia has just had the driest winter on record in some parts of the country, and we’ve just had the hottest and driest August in 106 years.

2005 was the hottest year on record because of climate change.

Climate change is happening and impacting on Australia’s economy and environment.

Australia is drying out quickly and with water restrictions already in place in many areas, Australia needs strong national leadership on climate change and water recycling to prevent a profound water crisis.

John Howard has been shown the evidence that climate change is making weather more extreme and cutting water supplies, but he is ignoring the inconvenient truth.

The Prime Minister is “sceptical” about climate change because he prefers ignorance to reality.

The Prime Minister’s denial over climate change may come at a significant cost for Australia.

Australia urgently needs strong leadership to support clean, renewable energy as part of national strategy to avoid dangerous climate change.

John Howard is increasingly isolated over climate change because he is wrong.

The Howard Government has independent reports and expert advice from the CSIRO stating that, if strong action is not taken, temperatures and sea levels will rise to dangerous levels.