Australia's climate change, wind farming, coal industry and the 'big carbon plan': Mine coal, sell coal, repeat until rich

Ingrid Muenstermann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Climate change threatens all elements of life for people around the world (Stern Review, 2006), it presents the greatest ecological, economic and social challenge of our time (CSIRO, 2009), the chance that it is natural and not manmade is less than 5%, and carbon dioxide emissions contribute to the problem. Australia's biggest export article is coal: more than 80% of Australia's electricity is produced by coal (Diesendorf, 2006a; Garnaut, 2008; United Nations Statistics Division - Environment Statistics, 2010). This indicates there is a need to consider greater use of renewable energies. The creation of more wind farms would be one way of reducing the problem. However, there is controversy and conflict regarding the development of wind farms. From a sociological point of view, Beck's (2007) risk society can be applied to concerns regarding the outcome of 'mind coal, sell coal, repeat until rich' (Pearse, 2010b). This literature review looks at issues surrounding wind energy and the coal industry by using trustworthy published research, by analysing the print media, internet postings, scientific reports, social scientists' oppinions, attitudes of philosophers, a four-Corners' television report, government data and the findings of a government inquiry. There is evidence that members of the powerful coal industry play an important part in the anti-wind farm movement in examining: who are the people gehind the scene and what are their motifs?
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)231-249
Number of pages19
JournalRural Society
Volume21
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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