Abbott govt funds dodgy climate researcher, Bjorn Lomborg, while cutting back genuine science

UWA was approached by the federal government” [ to host Bjorn Borg’s Centre, with govt funding]

In an email to supporters of the Climate Council on Friday, former Australian of the Year Tim Flannery said it was “extraordinary” that the government had abolished the Climate Commission “which was composed of Australia’s best climate scientists, economists and energy experts” on the basis of lack of funding only to find the money to “import a politically-motivated think tank to work in the same space.”

“Mr Lomborg’s views have no credibility in the scientific community,” Professor Flannery wrote. 

Abbott-fiddling-global-warmBjorn Lomborg centre: leaked documents cast doubt on Abbott government claims, The Age April 23, 2015 Lisa Cox, Matthew Knott It was the Abbott government’s original idea for the University of Western Australia to host a think tank created by the “sceptical environmentalist” Bjorn Lomborg, according to leaked talking points.

The government will provide $4 million over four years to bring Dr Lomborg’s Copenhagen Consensus Centre methodology to Australia at a new centre within the University of Western Australia (UWA) business school.

In the talking points, obtained by Fairfax Media, UWA says it does not plan to spend any money on the centre and that it believes government funding will largely cover its cost. The government has previously stated that UWA would also contribute to the centre and that the government is contributing only a third of its estimated cost.

While Dr Lomborg accepts the science of human-induced climate change, he is a controversial figure because he has argued that the risks of climate change have been overstated and it is more important to tackle problems such as malaria.

He has campaigned against the Kyoto Protocol and the use of carbon pricing as a solution to cut carbon emissions, instead favouring investments in research and development

Since the centre was announced, there has been speculation, including among university staff members, about how the centre was conceived and how it came to be funded.

Last week a spokesman for Education Minister Christopher Pyne said: “The government is contributing around a third of the total cost of the centre based on a proposal put forward by the University of Western Australia and Dr Lomborg’s organisation.”

But in talking points circulated to UWA staff members, David Harrison, UWA’ s head of corporate and government affairs, provides a suggested answer to any students or colleagues to the question: “How did the Australia Consensus Centre come to UWA?”

“UWA was approached by the federal government,” the talking points state……..

Fairfax Media understands that government ministers, following discussions with Dr Lomborg, had the idea of bringing his methodology to Australia and approached UWA about hosting the centre. The university then submitted a proposal to the government that was accepted.

Dr Lomborg has links to some of the government’s most senior figures. ……..

The establishment of the centre comes as the UWA has moved to axe other research facilities and academic staff in the sciences……..

In an email to supporters of the Climate Council on Friday, former Australian of the Year Tim Flannery said it was “extraordinary” that the government had abolished the Climate Commission “which was composed of Australia’s best climate scientists, economists and energy experts” on the basis of lack of funding only to find the money to “import a politically-motivated think tank to work in the same space.”

“Mr Lomborg’s views have no credibility in the scientific community,” Professor Flannery wrote.

“His message hasn’t varied at all in the last decade and he still believes we shouldn’t take any steps to mitigate climate change. When someone is unwilling to adapt their view on the basis of new science or information, it’s usually a sign those views are politically motivated.”http://www.theage.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/bjorn-lomborg-centre-leaked-documents-cast-doubt-on-abbott-government-claims-20150423-1mqfnn.html

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