AUSTRALIA has some explaining to do. How can it be that a country with such natural environmental benefits uses so much coal, and then ensures that other countries do as well by exporting much of it to them. Not only is it the fourth largest producer, behind China, India, and the USA, but it ranks first for exports.

At almost three million square miles it’s only just smaller than Canada, or the USA, and yet the number of Australians has yet to reach twenty five million. So it’s more than thirty times larger than the UK with just a few more people than in our south eastern counties and towns.

Despite being the world’s sixth largest in area the population isn’t in the top 50 nations, and nine out of ten Aussies live within 30 miles of the coast. This isn’t surprising as much of the interior is desert, some of it very warm, and the rest is semi-arid.

With such natural advantages, for solar, tidal and wave power apart from the unlimited scope for wind turbines it is more than remiss of the Australians to produce well over ninety per cent of their energy from coal, oil and natural gas with renewables a miserable six per cent.

By comparison in 2017 the UK produced 29 per cent of its electricity from wind and solar so it’s not surprising that our CO2 production per person has dropped to just over seven tonnes while each Australian produces more than double this, at over 16 tonnes, and it’s still increasing.

There is evidence to suggest that the declining rainfall totals in the Australian south east and south west are a response to a warming world, and the current long term droughts in these areas are likely a sign of the future pattern. Indeed record temperatures have been set in seven of the last ten years.

And above all the Great Barrier Reef coral is struggling, from the warming and rising sea levels, more storms and shipping pollution.

What more evidence do the Australians need?