Although pretty well everyone agrees that the world's climate is changing, that we're heating up, and that things will indeed be very different for our descendants within a few generations, there is still argument about whether we're responsible, or if it's part of the natural cycle.
The doomsayers point to the effects of industrialisation on our atmosphere and environment generally, the naysayers suggest that we're impertinent to think that a mere human action could change the world to this degree. The doomsayers want action to reduce emissions - to generally get our act together. The naysayers say it's going to happen anyway, so there's no need - sure, we can make changes, but the environment will still get hotter.
Who's right? Don't ask me, I'm not a scientist. ;^)
But I'll still say something. I firmly believe that humans have been polluting our environment since the year dot, and that since industrial revolution, and rapid increases in population, we've been polluting far more of it. We're a pretty grotty, lazy bunch when it comes to cleaning up.
So, it seems to me that if so called "scaremongering" reduces the amount we pollute, bring on the scaremongering! Even if global warming and climate change continues, by reducing our mess, we and our descendants can still live in a better world than we'd live in if we continued on our present course.
So, let's spend money on clean, renewable energy for a start. And memo Mr Howard... any energy source that leaves behind deadly waste for thousands or millions of years, well, it's NOT clean OR green! Especially when safe storage techniques are still under development and unproven.
And it may well be true that Australia is small fry in the world of polluters - who cares? Every reduction counts. If we can prove that renewable energy is workable, we can be world leaders. Now, wouldn't *that* be something to be proud of?