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Friday, January 3, 2020


Scott Morrison has failed to develop a plan for phasing out thermal coal exports and for phasing out vehicles running on fossil fuels.

Simply claiming "you can't shut these down overnight" is a nonsense answer.

IEA - World Energy Outlook, 2019 - Thermal Coal Demise
IEA - World Energy Outlook, 2019 - Thermal Coal Demise

A plan for phasing out both thermal coal exports and vehicles running on fossil fuels is straightforward.

Australia has seen how such plans work. It implemented one in phasing out vehicles that ran on leaded petrol.
  1. Announce a date for the ban on new vehicles that use leaded petrol. 
  2. Announce a date for the ban of the supply of leaded petrol. 
The period to the date of the first ban sees a burst of investment for the supply of fuel and of vehicles to use the new energy source.

The period to the date of the second ban allows for the gradual retirement of all vehicles using the fuel being replaced, and for winding down the supply chain for that fuel.
From a paper by Troy Whitford, Fuel Mandates have a History of Success and a Lesson for Bio Fuels Implementation. Australian Policy and History, April 2010.
"In 1981, Australian state and federal transport ministers met to address pollution problems. Driving the shift towards unleaded petrol were vast environmental and health concerns.

During the 1980s, automobile associations were critical of the introduction of unleaded fuel. The RACV opposed the implementation believing it was too costly. The oil industry was cynical, too, arguing the introduction of unleaded fuel did not follow from a technological breakthrough but rather a decision by ministers. Without doubt, the position taken by oil companies, automobile associations and other stakeholders regarding unleaded fuel changed over time.

Despite opposition to unleaded fuel, the Transportation Council adopted a program to mandate unleaded petrol by 1985. The implementation policy for unleaded fuel was undertaken in stages. Initially, regulations were made calling for all new motor vehicles made after January 1986 (manufactured within Australia or imported) to meet the new fuel requirements. The policy then called for a complete phase out of leaded fuel by 2002. Prior to the national mandate, states had led the way on unleaded fuel of which NSW took the lead. The decision to mandate was essential for implementing unleaded fuel. It forced car manufacturers, oil producers and consumers to make the transition."