COMMENT: Even sceptics should look for a solution

Bleached and dying coral at the Great Barrier Reef. Picture: Taylor Simpkins

Bleached and dying coral at the Great Barrier Reef. Picture: Taylor Simpkins

A sceptic is a person inclined to question or doubt accepted opinions or beliefs.

Sceptics are a valuable part of social, intellectual and technological progress, but what if you are a sceptic of progress itself?

If you are sceptical of new ideas, should you offer an alternative approach? Or is faith in the status-quo a fair stance to take?

When money and political power is involved it can be difficult to decipher whether someone’s beliefs are for the greater good, or purely an individual agenda.

When it comes to our geography, our environment and our climate, the fact it is constantly changing is not argued.

A climate change sceptic is not then in doubt our climates change, they doubt whether us as humans are accelerating the rise in the amount of carbon dioxide in the earth’s atmosphere.

They appear to see an agenda in creating a world and lifestyles that produce fewer carbon emissions.

When Tony Abbott cut the Climate Commission, he said it was part of streamlining processes and avoiding duplication of services, handing the job to the Bureau of Meteorology. This reasoning appears on face value as purely process based, and void of his personal opinion on the science and research behind the commission.

Why then, was funding not injected into the bureau? And why did post-coup leader Malcolm Turnbull sack hundreds of climate scientists?

Even if you are sceptical of whether we humans are hastening a changing atmosphere, wouldn’t you want to back science to find out whether we are or we aren’t? 

It seems like a win-win situation for humanity, believers fund the science they believe in and non-believers fund the science to look into the possible cause of any changes. Yet, it appears science in general has become a political pawn in Australia – sacrificed by one side for potential advantage and used with intent to attack new avenues by the other.

The Climate Commission soon became a crowd-funded entity called the Climate Council, and this week it offered local council the opportunity to join its ‘Cities Power Partnership’.

Debate by councillors in regard to the motion shows even on a community level our leaders don’t think we must learn more about our planet and the way we can preserve what we have for future generations.